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The Milton Measure

Class II Retreat Doesn’t Get Cancelled This Year, Juniors Bond

by Charis Palandjian on Friday, April 14th, 2017

Two weekends ago, the junior class headed to Camp Bournedale in Plymouth, MA for the annual Class II retreat, better known as C2R. The purpose of this trip is to strengthen the class’s sense of identity, develop its leadership skills, and ultimately help juniors become successful senior models for the school.

A committee consisting of the Class II Deans, Class Representatives, and various junior volunteers planned the weekend, organizing all of the activities and groups. The class was divided into sixteen groups known as colored teams, in which each included an advisor and ten to eleven students. Made up of people who would not typically socialize together as well as those with existing relationships, the groups were created with the goal of creating and strengthening friendships between the members of the soon-to-be senior class.

The buses departed from school at 5:00pm on Saturday, April 1st and arrived at the scenic summer camp in Plymouth an hour later. Students brought their bags to their assigned cabins, which were all gender-separated and varied in size. Most students shared their traditional wood cabins with eight to ten other students. After settling in for the night, students went to dinner, and then attended the keynote speaker, Mike Webber, who has previously spoken at C2R about what it means to be a leader.

Webber spoke about “silent leadership,” highlighting that being a leader does not necessarily mean running for head monitor or for captain of a sports team. Leadership can just mean sitting with new people at lunch or engaging with those around you in a different capacity. Webber also did a few exercises with the audience to show how easy it is to influence a crowd, as well as to demonstrate how people subconsciously calculate risk before they act. The speaker was generally met with positive reviews.

Dylan Volman (II), who was on the planning committee for C2R, says that “Webber was awesome. The stuff he said about high school social dynamics was very true… he felt very real and he understood a lot about high school kids.” Caroline McCarthy (II) said she “learned about what it means to lead and that just because someone has a title doesn’t mean they’re capable of handling it, and on the flip side that someone without a title has great potential to lead.”

Following the keynote speaker, there was a bonfire, s’mores, ice cream bar, and a dance, in which people hung out with friends and relaxed. After these fun night activities, all students returned back to their cabins. The cabin groupings helped people who generally do not spend much time together to get to know each other. Juniors reported staying up late talking, saying they truly bonded with others and made new friends.

On Sunday, the class was split up into its colored groups for different activities and competitions. Teams rotated through four stations: group discussion, lawn games, a Project Adventure-type team building activity, and a series of minute-to-win-it competitions. They also received breaks for snack and lunch in between. The lawn games ranged from spikeball to volleyball to kayaking, while the team building activities involved picking up tennis balls with string and arranging ropes into squares while blindfolded.

Kalaria Okali (II) described that these “activities helped to bring [her] group together and really helped [them] get to know each other in a light-hearted, spirited setting.” She went on to say that “the project adventure activity, in which [her group] had to get over a 10-foot-tall wooden wall, really underscored the process of working together and bouncing ideas off of each other.” Natalie Wamester (II) said that her favorite part of C2R was “the freer station/activities like the lawn games because you get the chance to be with people you don’t normally hang out with and get to socialize in a less structured setting.”

Throughout the weekend, George Luo (II) and Leo Jin (II) filmed some of the C2R activities to create a video of the many memories of the weekend — the end result was presented to the whole school. Typically, students perform a dance at assembly after returning from C2R, but the planning committee believed the video would be a beneficial change.

Upon reflecting on the weekend, Coach Stone, one of the Class Deans for the junior class, explained that “the class did a really good job of expanding their social circles while strengthening the bonds of their current friendships.” He also said that “many folks got outside their comfort zone at C2R, and we see that trend continuing since we’ve returned,” especially from the “much more positive feel in the entire class gatherings.” Overall, the Class of 2018 benefitted greatly from the C2R experience and hopes to become successful leaders in the Milton community.


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Posted by Charis Palandjian on Apr 14 2017. Filed under Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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