LONDONDERRY — Sixth-graders at Londonderry Middle School learned team-building skills last week as they constructed mushing sleds and raced around a course in the school's athletic fields in a mock Iditarod. The course was taught by the Browne Center for Innovative Learning, an affiliate of the University of New Hampshire.
In addition to the Iditarod race, the students also participated in "Shackleton's Journey" and "March of the Penguins."
In "Shackleton's Journey," students worked on prioritizing what supplies they'd need to survive a shipwreck.
"March of the Penguins" required students to work together to put golf ball "penguin eggs" safely into a nest using a ring tied to a dozen strings. If they dropped the egg, they had 10 seconds to recoup.
This is the third year Londonderry Middle School has used the Browne Center for team-building programs. In the fall, the sixth-graders spent one day at the Center's Challenge Course, where they learned how to cooperate and build trust while engaging in different games and rope-climbing courses.
The students are teamed randomly for the activities. Since the three elementary schools feed into one middle school, it helps the sixth-graders to mix with new classmates.
Previously, the students took overnight trips at Camp Sargent, but it was deemed too costly by the School Board in 2005.
A third activity with Browne Center is planned for later in the school year.