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 Week of Nature: Scouting, Sunrises, and Waterfalls

​A group of 15 fourth- and fifth-graders who will be attending Camp Cuyamaca next year received scholarships March 20 because of their creative and well-written essays about positive experience they've had outdoors.

To celebrate nature, outdoor education and these creative students, we're going to feature three of their essays each day this week. Here are three more:

Lucas Carlson
Hanson Elementary School
Ramona Unified School District

To earn my arrow of light, I went on a scout camp out.  My dad and I drove to Dos Picos Park, and we saw plants and trees everywhere!  My dad, my scout group, my scout leader, and I were there.  My scout group and I went to a huge pile of rocks, which they called "winter."  It was pretty easy to get up, if you knew how to.  There were loose rocks everywhere, so I was careful not to slip.

It was so much fun climbing the rocks and we found a second pile of rocks, too.  We also had fun riding our bikes, and we were careful to not ride into trees, but I almost did.  We put glow sticks in our spokes, and played cops and robbers.  After that we made macaroni, and rode our bikes more.  Finally, we settled down, made s'mores, and talked around the campfire.  What made the trip fun was playing around with my scout group.

Going to sixth grade camp to me would be similar to my scout camp out.  It will be alike, but we won't be in tents.  At sixth grade camp, we will eat, sleep, and learn like the scout camp out, too.  Two of the differences are, we will be in dorm rooms, and camp will last a week.  I would love to go to sixth grade camp and learn about plants, wildlife, and many other things.  I hope to be able to come and enjoy camp.


Kaila Espiritu
Rancho San Diego Elementary School
Cajon Valley Union School District

Ha! Ha! Ha!  I was playing tag with my two cousins and sister when I heard water rushing down something.  Crunch! Crunch!  I was walking over the green leaves that fell from the tall tree that was as tall as a skyscraper.  I moved the bendy branches out of my way.  It was so beautiful.  It was prettier than Miss USA.  A waterfall!  I had never seen a waterfall as pretty as this one.  Crunch! Crunch!  I turned around as fast as a roadrunner.

"What are you doing?" asked Nina, my oldest cousin.

"I want to climb it", I said.

"The waterfall or the tree?" Nina asked.

"The waterfall!"  I answered.

"Ok!  Come on," Nina said.

We started walking to the waterfall.  My sister and other cousin tagged along.  I kept my shoes on and stepped on a rock with the greenest moss on it I've ever seen.  My sister slipped and her foot hit the clear, fresh, blue water that was as blue as the clear blue sky.  I heard the water rushing over the rocks.  We started to go up but it wasn't very steep.  As I kept getting higher I started to smell the clear fresh water, it smelled cleaner than Febreze.

Yay!  Yay!  I made it to the top.  I was as wet as a fish but I made it!  It was so beautiful.

I want to go to the Outdoor Education Program because I want to learn how waterfalls form and all about nature.  When I'm in nature I connect with my inner spirit and I want to connect with it at the Outdoor Education Program.


Olivia Ley
Pepper Drive Elementary School
Santee School District

My favorite outdoor memories are when my family and I go camping.  My family camps every October and has been doing it for thirty years.  We go to Los Coyotes Indian Reservation.  But sometimes we go to Indian Flats Reservation.  I love the feeling of the nature all around me.

There is one time I will always remember.  It was last October.  My uncle and I woke up before everyone else.  We made sure to be quiet and we got in his truck.  He had a small red truck.

We drove up a mountain trail.  There were trees everywhere.  We were going on our morning drive and hike because that is when a lot of the animals come out.  There were birds chirping.  We stopped and got out of the truck.

We saw deer up on a nearby hill.  The air was chilly and moist.  But we could not see any other animals so we kept driving.  We were about to go around a curve.  We drove around the curve and that's when it happened.  Far out there was a big hill and behind it, was the Salton Sea.  And the best part was when we watched the sun rise behind the hill. The sun made the sea sparkle.  It was very beautiful.

The reason I want to go to sixth grade camp is because I want to experience and learn more about the outdoors and nature.