"This is the best cake I've ever tasted," Grace exclaimed. Doubtful. I had eaten a piece of the same cake. There was no frosting. It was dry. It was burnt on the bottom. What made the cake taste so glorious to Grace is that she and her fellow Rivermont Upper School classmates made the cake
themselves . . . from scratch. And when I say from scratch, I mean they gathered the wood, started a fire without the aid of matches, and kept the fire sustained long enough to bake a cake over the flame. Impressive.
During the week at Camp Manito-Wish near Boulder Junction, Wisconsin, Rivermont Upper School students learn what it takes to be a leader and a follower through a series of exercises, activities, and conversations. The training emphasizes listening to others, drawing upon available resources, stretching your boundaries, and demonstrating respect. As students interact with one another in the idyllic setting of the Northwoods, they learn lessons that could never be replicated in the classroom.
At Rivermont, we believe in the education of the whole child, and Camp Manito-Wish is an environment where, alongside Intellect, the pillars of Character and Creativity are reinforced. Next week our Rivermont students will embark on the long journey northward. There they will climb trees, paddle canoes, and perhaps even bake a cake. The students will return weary but changed, because they will have accomplished something that they never knew they were capable of achieving.