Day 50: Outdoor Ed Game Inventing

Matt and I invented a game today! The activity is for Discovery, the outdoor ed and leadership program I work with. We’re going caving with a group of kids in a few weeks and want to introduce them to the utter darkness inside a cave. The activity we came up with combines darkness, expedition tasks, and teamwork. We call it…

Kim’s Scavenger Hunt

(based on Kim’s Game)


A large room inside Howard’s Waterfall Cave in NW Georgia. Source: Southeastern Cave Conservancy


Assemble the materials necessary to complete an expedition-related task, such as building a fire, cooking dinner, doing bat research, or going caving. Do it with increasing levels of challenge.


  • Cyalume light stick
  • Batteries
  • Bundle of kindling
  • Matches or lighter
  • Tennis, soccer, and other balls
  • Hula hoops
  • Rope of different lengths and diameters
  • Rocks of different types and sizes
  • Sticks of different sizes and shapes
  • Cooking utensils
  • Caving headlamp
  • Caving helmet
  • Utility pants
  • Hiking boots
  • Notebook
  • Pen/pencil
  • Camera
  • Ruler
  • Field guide book
  • Blindfolds for every group member
  • Notecards with task names pre-written on them (build a fire, cook dinner, do bat research, and go caving)


Indoors is perfect. Alternately, outdoors field will also work.

Round 1: Sighted

  1. Observe the room for 1-2 minutes with no agenda.
  2. Split the students into groups of 2-4, get silent.
  3. Your group receives your task card (build a fire, cook dinner, do bat research, or go caving). No talking!
  4. Assemble all necessary gear to do your task.
  5. Debrief on the process.

Round 2: Blind

  1. Separate back into your groups, get silent.
  2. Your group receives a new task card (build a fire, cook dinner, do bat research, or go caving). No talking!
  3. Everyone puts on a blindfold.
  4. Instructors distribute the materials around the room AFTER blindfolds go on.
  5. Go! Assemble all necessary gear to do your new task.
  6. Take off your blindfolds and rate your task completion. Look around, did you miss anything? Did you include unnecessary stuff?
  7. Debrief on the process — the goal of this debrief is to identify ways to improve the process.

Round 3: Blind, Again

Repeat Round 2 with another task, this time using task improvements they brainstormed.


Day 44: Finally Feeling Caught Up

Friday, 14 October 2016

I got a little underwater the last month and didn’t post a single picture. Here are a selection from Day 20 through Day 44 of school.

A few highlights:

  • students trying to convert metric units via King Henry Died By Drinking Chocolate Milk but not knowing what to do when they encounter the mega prefix, so tacking it on at the front incorrectly
  • teaching a complete 2-week long outdoor ed and leadership course called Discovery — including a backpacking trip to Pine Mountain Trail south of Atlanta
  • observing Ally Week, National Coming Out Day, and attending Atlanta Pride to support my LGBT students
  • setting things on fire with parabolic mirrors
  • learning the law of reflection and applying it to the mirror maze quiz (that picture below astonishes me because the laser light looks fake)
  • just getting started on refraction and several students are already noticing the critical angle


After we built the musical instruments (spending 3-4 class days on it) I felt like I was playing catch-up, a feeling I didn’t shake till this past Friday.