Our final week in Arizona was spent in Tucson and then traveling to the border to hike and learn with Tohono O'odham tribal members. Classes focused on the history of immigration policy in the US, soil health in the desert, and the tribe's ongoing relationship with the political boundary between the US and Mexico. Enjoy this window into Mountain Classroom!
The Mountain Classroom group spent last week alone in the hills nearby Cascabel, AZ. It was a unique opportunity to be on solo for four nights on a beautiful stretch of desert preserved by the Cascabel Conservation Association. We prepared for our introspection by studying neurons and the quantifiable benefits of mindfulness, reading Herman Hesse's Siddhartha set 2500 years ago, and discussing traditional Lakota ceremonies as written about by Albert White Hat in Zuya.
Bahia de Kino in Sonora, Mexico was home to Mountain Classroom for the past week. These videos will give you a taste of our adventures as we spent our time in the water developing kayaking skills, snorkeling, and admiring dolphins and sea lions! Our reading for classes was varied and focused on the local Comcaac tribe, wild foods, diabetes in Mexico, and Steinbeck's The Pearl. Now we are heading out of communication for the next week on solo at the Cascabel Conservation Association.
Proctor Academy's Mountain Classroom program transitioned back from Winter Break into the cacti-filled desert. Our first days were spent studying Wilderness First Aid in Arizona's beautiful Lost Dutchman State Park. Read more about their first week back below!
On our way out of Mississippi we stopped In Jackson to meet with lawyers at the Southern Poverty Law Center whose work focuses on the school-to-prison pipeline. Our next stop was in Bayou Sorrel, Louisiana where we spent the day with the Atchafalaya Basinkeeper and Greg Guirard, a local legend who salvages old cypress logs. To finish up our time in the Southeast we ate lunch in New Orleans' French Market and chatted with William Most, a local civil rights lawyer. Enjoy Jon's reflection on our time in the Southeast!
John Ruskey and Mark "River" Peoples from the Quapaw Canoe Company showed us to an amazing week of paddling that Grayson '18 and Matt '17 have documented below. In our class time we explored James Kilgore's Understanding Mass Incarceration, Richard Grant's Dispatches from Pluto, and a nutritional analysis of prison diets. which allowed us to get to know the prison system through multiple lenses. Enjoy this second update from Mountain Classroom's first three weeks of the term!