Hi! We are the Hill to Harbor Corps, a Youth Conservation Corps with the National Parks of Boston. This summer we will facilitate Hill to Harbor Discovery Camps with local YMCA branches. We teach the campers about the history of the national and state parks within the city of Boston through field trips to our sites. Our hope for the summer is to have youth answer the essential question “What can parks do for people and what can people do for parks?”.
We just finished the first of five weeks of the program, introduction week. During the week we visited four YMCA summer camps Wang, Huntington, Parkway, and East Boston, introducing them to the four expeditions we will take together this summer. We started by introducing ourselves and what the Hill to Harbor Discovery Camps are. Next, we led team building activities including a Buddy Bison toss, brainstormed a team name, and created group norms to build team chemistry. After, we tested their knowledge on parks they are familiar with through a four-corner game. We made signs to go in each corner representing the different types of parks – national, state, both, or neither.
During these activities there were a lot of memorable moments. With so many campers in a loud, crowded gym there was a lot of energy and excitement. Our team stuck together to adapt our plans when needed in order to finish out the week strong. It was a week filled with ups and downs but overall, we learned a lot about how working with younger children differs greatly from working with older audiences.
“A park is a place for a community to come together to do stuff” – John, Huntington YMCA