Ironwood Maine Web Update

Looking back on the past few months, my breath is nearly taken away at the thought of all of the unique opportunities we’ve had on this campus. Directly due to the efforts of our Ironwood team, we have made a constant stride to not only engage our students with character and cultural developing activities, we have also made a noticeable effort to improve and enhance these enrichment programs and activities. This week proves no different, as our campus was engaged in a variety of activities that sparked several cultural and regional learning moments.

Throughout the week, Frye students took time to learn about forest management. As you can imagine, responsible use of our forest, particularly in Maine, is a vital aspect of survival for this region. On Monday students had the opportunity to learn about both wildfires and prescribed burning, with an educational documentary. Later in the week, students put this information to work by clearing out down and dead underbrush. They have also spent a considerable amount time removing old stumps to clear a field for recreational purposes in the future.

Students also took the time to reconstruct and maintain walkingtrails around campus. There was a need to remove invasive species from the paths, to spread more crushed stone, replace wooden bridges and even the special treat of wild raspberries harvesting along the way! Trail construction is a great way to benefit from the wonders of the woods. This method limits the impact by directed travel and also offers safe space to enjoy hikes without heavy impact to insects, animals and plants.

A few regional cultural events took place off campus for our Farmhouse students. First, a trip to the Maritime museum in Searsport. During the trip to the museum, students learned about the various ways the oceans provided a sustainable way of life for Maine families. There were several exhibits on the historical architecture of ships and a few real-life relics of historic boats that spent their life-time on the open sea.

On Thursday, Students had the privilege of attending a lecture and presentation at the Farnsworth Art Museum. Three, nationally acclaimed, regional artists spoke about their work, backgrounds, and concepts of sculpture. Afterwards, the students were able to meander through the exhibit to view the pieces and even had a chance to create some sketches of their own.

Here on the farm, we are a long way from so many of the common cultural diversities found throughout the world.  We live a fairly simple life, with traditional core values and priority driven principles. Yet, we realize the importance to contemplate new and unfamiliar lifestyles and perspectives. We hope that sharing alternative approaches to life with our students will spark some creativity and curiosity in relation to their own lives.  All of these amazing young people are certainly getting better at living life outside of their comfort zones.

We hope you have a restful weekend and thank you for putting your trust in Ironwood.