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High Spirits and High Ropes

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WinShape 2016 was an experience to remember. WinShape Camp, located at Berry College in Rome, Georgia, is a retreat where students can really get to know each other. This year at WinShape, things were changed up a little bit. On the first day, all of the grades were split, but on the second day, they all interacted with one another.

WinShape always gives a special theme to each grade. Sixth grade’s theme was Community, seventh grade’s theme was Teamwork, and eighth grade’s theme was Leadership. WinShape encourages these qualities in the students through activities that require talking to one another, helping each other, and being a leader.

In sixth grade, they completed multiple different ropes courses where some of the students had to help pull the other students up the course. Sixth grader Simon said, “My favorite ropes course was the tower.” The tower consisted of three ropes courses that required some students to hold up the climbers. The sixth graders really created a sense of community when they had to trust that their fellow students would hold them up.

The seventh graders participated in a scavenger hunt where they had to work together to find clues to solve a word puzzle. 7th grader Luly said, “My favorite part was getting to learn my teammates and teacher better.” Although they lost their way many times and suffered from the excruciating heat, they had a lot of fun working together.

The eighth graders ziplined and practiced leadership. Eighth grader Lindsey said, “My favorite zipline was “The Flight of the Phoenix” where you had to climb a tower to reach the zipline. There was a pretty view of the campus, and there were also some horses.” She enjoyed how one of the students had to take the lead in the countdown before her friend and she jumped off the ledge.

At the end of the day, the students went up to the cabins to meet their cabin mates. Eighth grader Lindsey said, “My favorite part of the cabins was finally getting to sleep!” When night fell, the students gathered around the campfire, and the Student Vestry led the students in camp songs and prayer. After that, the students, tired and happy, returned to their cabins. Mr. Schwartz described his favorite part: “I loved getting to tell the people in my cabin stories about dog’s with opposable thumbs.”

On the second day of WinShape, the cabin groups got together and played field games. Some of the field games included walking through a rope maze and crab tag. After the field games, the students went to a smaller field with multiple different sections. Each section was a different activity. Eighth grader Celie said, “I loved the marshmallow game because I got to eat a marshmallow!” Some of the others games included passing balls and stacking cups, and each of the activities embraced all of the qualities that each grade was trying to achieve.

Overall, everyone had a great time at WinShape. Many of the students said they loved all of the activities. Seventh grader Luly summed it up, “The past two years I have gone to WinShape were a lot of fun. I can’t wait to go one more year.”

Many of the students agree with Luly; they can’t wait for another year at WinShape.


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High Spirits and High Ropes