Check back for the latest posts about life, academics, culture, and great stories from The Outdoor Academy. Subscribe to our blog’s RSS feed and get our news sent directly to you as we post it.

 (You might need to install a browser extension or plugin to read the RSS feed directly from your browser.)
NOV. 19, 2013

Giving Day Approaches

Bookmark and Share

At The Outdoor Academy we enjoy joking around quite a bit, but there is one thing that we take very seriously: Giving Day. The last full day of the semester is Giving Day. During one of our first meetings together in September as a new community, each person, students and faculty alike, drew a name from a bowl. This represented the person that would receive a very special, individualized, hand-crafted gift from you. Once we pulled the name of our giving day recipient from the jar and burned it onto our minds, it is tradition to then eat that piece of paper so that no one will ever have a chance of finding out who it is. This mission is top secret!

As I sat there chewing on my piece of paper, I began to feel very anxious about that distant date. I am one who is very artistically challenged. Gifts that people have made in the past include knitted scarves or hats, pictures with homemade frames, carved stools or spoons, and hooks made at the forge. What in the world was I going to make? I decided I would focus my efforts on getting to know my person and perhaps the perfect gift idea would reveal itself in the process. Who is it, you ask? That’s classified information.


That once distant date is now fast approaching. Many of the students’ choice periods and free time is spent crafting that special creation. Around campus you can see stained glass projects, yarn destined to be hats and scarves, and wooden spoons that started from a block of wood. Some days you can even smell the forge. Everyone has been busy learning a new skill or perfecting a natural gift. I cannot wait to see what everyone has made for each other, but this comes with the sad realization that the end of semester 37 is also fast approaching. However, I am thankful for the few remaining weeks we have with these students.

Jen Hilterman
Math Teacher