NaNoWriMo and Field Trip Update

The field trip was great! We’re already talking about doing it again next year. I hope it becomes a tradition for the fifth grade students at my school.  There were two other schools there at the same time we were there. One was a group of Muslim girls from Sacramento; they’ve been going there for eight years. And I think one of the teachers from the other school said they’d been going there for seven years.

It was a great experience. I learned a lot about watersheds – and I hope my students did too. The people at the Marin Headlands Institute were awesome. The Field Science Educator with my group, Casey, did a great job. Jen, our coordinator, was attentive and helpful. And everyone was pleased with the food.

As a vegan, I can count on just about any restaurant having pasta with marinara sauce. I’ve had it everywhere – and then some. I must say the marinara sauce I had in the dining hall at the Marin Headlands Institute was probably the best I’ve ever had.

While I enjoyed the visit to the pond to collect samples of macroinvertebrates, the night hike to the beach to listen to the waves with “animal” ears was great. And only superseded by digging in the sand to find bioluminescent plankton. That was really cool!

I did get some writing done. The students were to stay in their bunks quietly until 6:45 a.m. I woke up earlier than that, slipped out of the dormitory and headed over to the Owl’s Roost around 5 a.m. or so, my usual wake-up time. The Owl’s Roost was the room set aside for adults, a little child-free sanctuary. There was a little kitchen just down the hall with coffee, and comfy chairs in the roost itself. I wrote both mornings we were there.

On the first, I only wrote 1,485 words. To win NaNoWriMo and reach 50K, you should write 1,667 words per day. On Wednesday, I wrote in the morning again at the Owl’s Roost, and then again in the afternoon after arriving back at home: 1,701 words.

On Thursday, I only wrote 1,535 words. The good news that day was that I had a smartboard installed in my classroom. The bad news was that they installed it over my whiteboard, which I wanted moved to another wall. And since I haven’t received any training yet, I had to jump in real quick to be ready to teach on Friday. I didn’t even use it on Thursday itself. The students had a couple of tests, and we took it easy after the field trip, plus we had some grade level planning time.

Again, I didn’t write at all Friday morning, still familiarizing myself with the software for the smartboard, and planning some lessons. But this afternoon and evening, I put on my new fedora, my writing hat, and cranked out 2,022 words. I am now at 6,743 words, just slightly ahead of my word goal of 6,667.

2 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo and Field Trip Update

  1. Sounds like an absolutely fabulous trip…and I love “the Owl’s Roost” — I want one of those! 🙂

    And…we have SmartBoards in our conference rooms at work…you like it once you’ve learned it. It’s just to the “smartboard installers” weren’t smart enough to move the old one.

    Keep on writin’!
    ~ Paula


    • The field trip was great. The Owl’s Roost was a nice haven. There was another dad there, along with me, who was also an early riser. We were always there early in the mornings before the boys were awake.

      I’m quickly adapting to my smartboard. I like it. I’ll like it even more when I feel like I’m using it to its potential.


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