Today the group got together for the start of a 4-week session on wilderness survival. We have such wonderful parents in this group, many of whom have volunteered to share their knowledge on the subject. Today everyone got together to learn a little bit about basic wilderness safety, and to put together a survival kit. In the next 3 weeks we will also be lashing together forts in the woods, learning basic orienteering, and practicing how to safely start a fire and gather edible plants from the woods. Really, there is nothing more fun for a group of 6 - 12 year old boys than this.
The kits that the boys put together were inexpensive, basic kits, with the idea that pieces can be replaced with better quality items as the boys get older, and can be added to as their needs change (at this point, the likelihood of any of them finding themselves alone in the woods is rather slim!!) We did make sure to cover basic safety information, though that could be helpful in an emergency - the importance of staying in one place, the priority of shelter and water over food, different ways to signal for help, etc.
Our kits included:
-fire starters (made from cotton balls and Vaseline!!)
-trail marking tape
-pocket knife or all-in-one-tool
-wire for making a snare
-first aid kit- band-aids, alcohol wipes, compress
-needle and thread
- a serrated metal line for cutting wood
-piece of sandpaper
-water treatment pills
-empty tin can
Everything even fit into a small lunch-sized bag!!
Of course, once the survival kits were finished, the boys all headed off into the park to 'practice'...