Be a Cabin Leader for Science Camp

Danee' Julien

The San Joaquin County Outdoor Education Program is a special and valuable educational and social experience for students. For over 58 years the program, most people know as “Science Camp,” has been serving 5th and 6th graders. While using California’s science content standards, the program is able to supply great hand-on experience through tide pool, forest, and marsh ecology.

The cabin leaders or ‘counselors’ are a big part of the program. Being a cabin leader isn’t always for everybody because it comes with a lot of responsibilities and expectations. Leaders are responsible for a cabin group of 8-12 students and as Ms. Earnest explained you must, “enforce the rules of the camp with the students.” Some of the basic rules she told me about consisted of, “Staying on the trail, no fighting, keep the sticks on the ground, and stay with your group.” Cabin Leaders have to accompany their cabin groups at instructional and non-instructional times of the day. Ms. Earnest described that leaders must be a “role model,” for the students by having, “appropriate behavior and language.” What’s expected of the cabin leaders to show is, “enthusiasm and excitement during the activities.”

Be prepared to go hiking, play games with the kids, tell camp stories, go to the beach, picnic, critter hunt, go to the sea lab, and more. Ms. Earnest also listed some things that would be necessary to bring with you for the camp such as:

  • Pillow
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Hygiene Products
  • Two Pairs of Shoes (comfortable)
  • Undergarments
  • Appropriate Clothing for the Woods

The district has not yet provided a calendar for when this years Science Camp is, but any juniors or seniors who are looking into being a Science Camp counselor can go to Ms. Earnest for all the information. She also provides a packet with everything you need to sign and know. When I spoke with Mrs. Earnest she explained that in order to be eligible you need, “good grades, attendance, and behavior.” Even if you’ve already been she gives you the chance to go “twice a year.”