Fifth Graders Set a Course for Adventure on Discovery Day
Discovery Day activities included reading and nautical knot tying, all within the 38'x 10' deck area.
On December 20, 26 fifth graders and one intrepid teacher set sail for a day of adventure without even leaving their classroom. Mr. Nolt’s class spent the day aboard a simulation of the Discovery, one of three ships that made the voyage from England to North America in 1606. Passengers of the Discovery went on to found the colony of Jamestown.
Students spent the day in a 38’ x 10’ area of the classroom, which is the same size as the Discovery’s deck. In addition to their normal reading, math, and social studies lessons, students tried out 17th century activities like mapmaking and knot tying. Apart from recess and library book exchange, the class stayed onboard for the day.
A highlight was a historically-accurate snack of pea porridge, oatmeal, apples, dried beef, hardtack, tuna, and smoked herring. Many students were surprised to learn that they enjoyed the new foods, with many going back for seconds of peas and herring. They were, however, happy to go to lunch in the cafeteria.
This year’s fifth graders are not the first L-S students to experience Discovery Day. According to Mr. Nolt, the activity was taught years ago at Hans Herr by (now retired) teachers Janet Kline and Tom Gehr, and maybe others. Now Discovery Day is back to inform a new generation of students about the lives of some of our nation’s first pioneers.
Students had mixed reactions to 17th century pea porridge.
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