Last week, our middle school Bobcats experienced Lake Tahoe School’s first ever Winterim trips. Winterim aims to provide opportunities for students to experience the world outside the classroom, provide service to communities in need, expand students’ world views, explore new adventures, learn about new cultures, and create memories to last a lifetime. Considered an integral part of the Lake Tahoe School curriculum, each middle school grade had the opportunity to explore Costa Rica, Washington DC, or the Tahoe Basin.

Eighth Grade Trip to Costa Rica

The eighth-grade trip to Costa Rica was an immersive experience that allowed students to learn about the country’s culture, environment, and people. The trip started with a full day of climbing, rappelling, and other gravity-defying challenges in the Cloud Forest. Despite the weather not playing nice, the students persevered and completed every challenge with pride.

The following day, students participated in a service project on a coffee farm. After learning about sustainable farming practices and the importance of natural fertilizers, they worked together to spread fertilizer throughout the farm rows to ensure healthy crops. In the afternoon, they met local high school students and learned about their daily lives, sharing stories and finding commonalities.

The next day was another successful workday on the coffee farm, followed by a visit to a nearby waterfall and a chance to experience a traditional “Cafecito” with local families. After the third day spent on the coffee farm, the students visited Manuel Antonio National Park, where they were met by knowledgeable naturalists who helped them spot and view local wildlife, including sloths and monkeys. They enjoyed lunch with a view of the ocean and ended the day with a beautiful sunset at the beach.

Eighth graders spent their last morning on the coast in Dominical surfing! Each and every student successfully rode a wave to the shore. Some even looked like experts by the end! Overall, through many highs and a few lows of the trip, all Eighth Grade Bobcats returned from their travels as better people and better friends with many unforgettable adventures. Each and every experience in Costa Rica was an opportunity to learn and grow with a clear vision on what it means to make Tahoe a more sustainable place to live.

Seventh Grade Trip to Washington DC

The seventh-grade trip to Washington D.C. provided a chance for students to learn about the history and culture of the United States. The first day was spent getting to know each other and participating in orientation activities after a long travel day. On the second day, they visited several national memorials, including those dedicated to FDR, MLK, Jefferson, and Iwo Jima, as well as the Arlington National Cemetery. They ended the day with dinner at the Pentagon City Mall.

The following day was spent at the National Museum of American History and the National Air and Space Museum, where students learned about the history of the country’s scientific and technological achievements. On the next day, they visited the United States Capitol Building, the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian, and war memorials. The following day was spent at the Mall and the National History Museum before heading to a Washington Capitals hockey game! A tour of the International Spy Museum was one of the many highlights of the trip to be enjoyed before heading back home.

Sixth Grade Local Adventures

The sixth-grade students at LTS had a memorable week full of exciting activities that challenged them to step out of their comfort zones and experience new things. The first day of the Winterim week kicked off with an Engineering Challenge Project led by Mr. Pandola. They participated in a fun-filled competition where they had to design and build structures using different materials. The students then enjoyed a movie at the Incline Theater, and ended the day with a refreshing swimming session at the IVGID Rec Center.

The students headed to Tahoe City for a Winter Sports Day with Coach Jon on Tuesday. They participated in various snow activities such as skiing, snowboarding, and sledding. The following day, the students participated in a community service project at FISH in Carson City. Later in the day, they visited the Nevada State Museum or took a tour of the Capitol building. The students enjoyed a delicious sushi lunch and later attended the Reno Taiko Tsurunkai presentation in Duffield Hall.

On Thursday, students had the exciting opportunity to attend the NCAA Basketball Tournament in Sacramento, and even appeared on the big screen! On Friday, the students participated in indoor rock/wall climbing at High Altitude Fitness in Truckee. They visited the Donner Museum, where they learned about the history of the Donner Party. The day ended with a fun-filled bowling session at Incline Bowl.

Overall, educational trips are an invaluable learning experience for middle schoolers. Whether exploring the natural wonders of Costa Rica, delving into the history and politics of Washington DC, or experiencing the beauty of Lake Tahoe, these trips offer a chance for students to learn, grow, and broaden their horizons.