Our sixth and seventh grade students just returned from Barrier Island at the Saint Christopher Camp and Conference Center on Seabrook Island south of Charleston. We had a great time learning about God’s creation, especially as it relates to the geography and ecology of the coastal area of South Carolina. While there, we enjoyed nearly one mile of beach, 100 acres of salt marsh, 200 acres of undisturbed maritime forest, freshwater ponds, and a freshwater swamp called a slough. The students and chaperones lived together, ate together family style, served one another, played together, and learned together.
This year our class activities included walking through the maritime forest, visiting the slough, learning how barrier islands change and evolve due to erosion and sand re-deposition, and a trip through the salt marsh to our mud bath in the mud pit. We also learned about succession in ecosystems and how that affects animals and plants. We got to hold snakes and turtles, we got to examine fish in the aquarium classroom, and we even got to pet an alligator!
We caught jelly fish and crabs and little bait fish using a seine net. While we were seining, a flock of pelicans and a group of sharks put on an aerial show for us just off shore as they were attacking the schools of bait fish in the estuary. We expected to see the pelicans diving into the water, but it was a thrill to see the sharks flying out of the water.
We took a class on orienteering including the proper use of a compass to take directional bearings from landmarks and maps. Every student was successful in following the compass to find the treasure chest full of candy. In our free time we played a lot of 4 square. It was a great trip. Be sure to check out some pictures from the trip below!