Week 4 | Fox Walkers at Fairhaven | Raccoon Touch and Firemaking

Rainy season is upon us!  We welcomed back the Fox Walkers (after a two-week hiatus from class due to our Ireland travels) with the task of assisting us mentors in getting a fire going.  With a bit of effort (and the help of some char-cloth and Douglas Fir pitch), we were able to sustain a sweet little fire in the grill.  We even enjoyed roasting apples on sticks over the fire on Tuesday, which was a warm and delicious treat.  Fire-making will continue to be an important part of the curriculum in the upcoming cold months, with a focus on mentoring the Fox Walkers on how to locate and identify dry materials, how to build a fire structure, and how to practice safety around fire.  It’s nice to stay warm out there!

Our theme for the week was "Raccoon Touch”.  Pat and I shared a story and puppet show about Moon Bird and Running Deer’s dog named Coony.  In this tale, Coony shape-shifted into a raccoon and showed Moon Bird and Running Deer how to use their sense of touch to deepen their nature awareness skills.  

On Thursday, the Fox Walkers explored their own sense of Raccoon Touch during an activity called Meet-a-Tree.  In this game, one “raccoon” is masked (aka blindfolded) while another leads him/her to a tree.  The masked raccoon gets to know the tree by using his/her hands to feel up and down the tree and notice the tree’s distinguishing features via touch.  The masked raccoon is then led back to the starting point and his/her blindfold is taken off.  He/she is then given the task of finding the exact tree that they “met” with their hands.  This is such a sweet awareness game, which Pat and I have found to be quite engaging for the Fox Walkers.  They love to blindfold one another and lead their friends to trees!

In addition to exploring our Raccoon Touch, it was truly such a joy to get back into the rhythm of our days together.  We gravitated once again to our favorite spots— “Blast-Off Hill", “Squirrel Den”, and “Forest Home”— and acquainted ourselves with a new favorite spot (which we have yet to give a name to).  This spot is the steep hill on the edge of the big soccer field near the entrance to the park, and it is the perfect hill for rolling down!  I sense that we will be visiting this epic hill, as it’s a great place for letting out big energy!

Pat and I are grateful for another wonderful week with the Fox Walkers, and we look forward to the adventures that lie ahead this week!