On Monday the 15th we were given a tour of the CAT campus. However, it was only a two hour tour and and when we had finished I felt there was still so much more to see and explore. Our tour guide Joe was great and very informative and not a very technical level, which was great for someone like myself. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to keep up or understand some of the technology but this site brings it to the basics. I really enjoyed learning how a composting toilet works, learning about how the site began to where it is now with more of a wildlife variety than seen in a very long time. I thought the hydraulic lift was very cool as well. Such a simple idea that should be so easy to incorporate into so many similiar forms of transportation. I also enjoyed hiking to the top of the mountain to see the windmills and the surrounding area. It's absoloutly beautiful here. After finished our tour with Joe it was time for lunch at the local cafe which has served us a fantastic meal every day that we have stayed with them. After this we than met with Renny to volunteer to help build a lift for helping the kids to get firewood to the cabins easier. We talked about his ideas and than we all brain stormed on the simplist way to build the project. A new group cooked dinner and it was to bed for another night and a very quick day. So far I think what I'm enjoying most about CAT is that it's really geared torward children. As a future educator I would love to be able to have my students experience such a unique, hands on learning environment. I was really surprised to learn that even the cabins are child friendly. That's very exciting for someone like myself with an up and coming career in this very similiar field.
Tuesday the 16th we woke up and started immediatly on Renny's lift four girls went to town, the guys worked on the lift, and Amber and myself helped Charlie build a box to put the firewood in. Even with 5 people missing from the group there were still quite a few of us working on the project with not alot of space so after a few hours Amber and I headed to lunch a little early to explore the CAT store. After lunch we had a very interesting lecture about ecological footprinting with Deirdre. I learned how and what goes into calculating your ecological footprint and found lots of materials that I could utlize in my own classroom. I really enjoyed the short videos that she had shared with us escpecially "Wake up and Freak Out". I really enjoyed sitting in a lecture directed torward a younger audience. First of all I was able to follow the entire lecture and second of all I walked away with great ideas for a future classroom. AFter this I explored the education exhibits which were very cool, I escpecially liked the solar heating exhibit and the difference between a rural and urban house. And I also enjoyed the peices of turbine that they had recycled into exhibits if not to learn anything else but the shear size of them. After this it was back to the cabin for dinner and bed.