Category Archives: MST@MSU

MST@MSU | Days 7 and 8

This weekend was quite a long one for camp, so I’ll quickly recap the main events: Camp Highfields and the dance on Saturday, and Field Games on Sunday. I’ll include a few other details, but since I’m a day behind (and waking up in five hours), I’m going fast.

My team for Camp Highfields was pretty good. We had a few strong leaders, some good ideas, and an ability to talk to each other to work a problem. Unfortunately, the team also talked a little too much without reaching a consensus, which slowed us down out there. They were also pretty easily distracted, especially when it came to using parts of nature to help them finish the challenge. We made it through most of the challenges, and only couldn’t complete two of them due to time and our general inability to work together.

Later that night, we had the MST Dance. I had a great time, and was able to convince a few people that seemed like they weren’t enjoying themselves to actually go out there and try, and I think they had a good time. I was just dancing and checking up on the kids and dancing some more and talking, but it was great. The only downside (not a real downside though) was that I was one of the only people not picked to dance during the snowball portion of the slow dance. Mel and I just watched from the front of the room as everyone else danced, but since I was enjoying not dancing at that point, I didn’t mind.

On Sunday, I woke up then slept in the laundry room for two hours before Field Games started. Mel had a list of ten events ready to go, plus all of the necessary supplies for the games. She even got supplies for some warpaint, so I mixed up the green portion then painted a palm print on my face. I went downstairs, gathered the Green Team in the front of Shaw, and painted on their own warpaint. Once we were all set, we walked around the side of Shaw to the back to get ready for the games.

We started off pretty average, but then a dead last finish in Pulse almost beat us. My team was down, and they seemed like they weren’t having fun from losing and doing quite poorly. I tried to lift their spirits, but it wouldn’t be until two second-place finishes in the next two games did they finally start to chipper up. I helped Troy and Darin with the Balloon Launch, followed by me being tied to a tree as Santa wearing a bikini. After the games were done, and the shaving cream fight died down, we corralled them inside to shower and get ready for dinner.

All of the staff was so tired, so we pushed back some of the nightly schedule so that we could finish our meeting sooner and get to bed, but due to some late night shenanigans, I’m still up pretty late and will be feeling it all tomorrow. Here’s to Monday!

MST@MSU | Day 6

I had this morning off, so this should be a shorter post than the rest. I skipped running and woke up at 0930 to the sounds of construction right outside my window. The construction started there. I thought about going to bed, but figured that since I was already up (and the noise wasn’t stopping), I should just shower and get ready for the day. So, that’s what I did. Mel and I talked after in the Lobby while we waited for Steph (who also had the morning off) to get up and the morning classes to return.

Lunch was fine, especially with the mounds of food and the mug of coffee I consumed. After, I took the Astronomy kids over to BPS. We would be doing the Walk the Solar System project today due to rescheduling, which I was pretty excited about. We started at the front of BPS (after they drew their planets/dwarf planets) with the Sun. Each student said their facts about their object as we stuck it in the ground, after pacing out the distance from the previous planet. We ran out of campus right around Neptune, so Pluto and Eris had to be described without actually walking out their scale distance. We picked up the planets as we walked back, then did a quick scaling for distances between galaxies right away.

Once that was over, I took Basketball again over to the courts. One kid was feeling a little poorly soon after warm-ups, so he sat out for much of the clinic. They worked on offense and some rebounding, followed by two scrimmages. It was pretty hot out, and without much wind, so most of the students were pretty lethargic. Myself and a few of the other RAs talked about how all of the kids just drank soda all day and weren’t getting enough water, so hopefully they’ve learned for next week.

We got back to Shaw, and Red went to the Dairy Store for winning the scavenger hunt earlier in the week. Soon after, we took them into dinner, where we ate fairly quickly before heading outside to handle the Secret Pal revelation ceremony. It went pretty well, with enough Troy antics to keep everyone (primarily the RAs) entertained. Once that was done, we broke into a few different groups for the movie (which ended up being canceled), the computer lab, and just regular lounge/lobby activities.

Around 2100, we started shipping kids out to the MSU Observatory, with me going with the first wave. Basically Troy and Steph were constantly cycling between the Observatory and Shaw either bringing kids there or taking them back. I got to see a lot of cool stuff while there (three planets, some globular clusters, the Moon, etc.) while the kids did whatever they wanted. It was pretty cool, though I could tell that by the end that things were getting a little dicey, so I was glad when I finally got back with the last group right around midnight.

We got all of the kids in their rooms and with the lights off, then held a quick meeting to talk about Highfields and the dance tomorrow. It should be very interesting…

MST@MSU | Day 5

I ran this morning, alongside eight girls and two boys. The numbers seem to be remaining steady, but I’ll need to see how they hold up tomorrow (when Troy is leading) and at the start of next week when kids begin to drop off for more sleep. I know one kid will run every day, but that’s not the point. After showering, I had to handle a quick roommate dispute, but that didn’t really ruin the morning. Breakfast went fine as well, as did the color groups beforehand.

I took Nuclear Astrophysics to class today, but due to not sleeping much the night before, I knew that I should just get comfortable on the couch, and that I did. Soon after falling asleep, I had a dream that my class was standing around me, trying to decide if they should wake me up. It almost felt like I wasn’t sleeping and it was actually happening, so I woke myself up, and of course it wasn’t actually happening. This repeated again, and again, but on the third time I recognized it and slipped into a lucid dream. I remember the people in my dream telling me that it wasn’t a dream, but I just ignored it. It was pretty cool, but I even woke myself up from that early. I fell asleep again, then Zach Constan woke me up at the end of class.

I walked them back for lunch, with Zach tagging along to answer some more questions, but the highlight was the return of the ever-elusive FRENCH ROAST! I even texted everyone to tell them, but they thought that I was just saying it and didn’t mean that the caf had, until they arrived, of course. I ate, then got ready to take Astronomy over to class for the “Walk the Solar System” day. This had, however, been rescheduled for tomorrow due to the shoddy forecast, so I’ll be going to Astronomy again tomorrow to walk it, which I’m actually pretty excited about. They went through studying about the planets, particularly Mars, which was fun to watch.

After, I took the Basketball clinic over to IM East. Things went well, with me filling in for a kid during an ending drill after the kid started feeling a little sick, but he got better by the end. It was very hot and humid, but that did decrease slightly at the end following the severe weather alarms. We walked backed at the end of the clinic, but got caught in the rain before we could make it back to Shaw. My front was pretty wet, but so was basically every other person’s in the camp. We went through free time before color groups pre-dinner.

I ate a lot, and the RAs decided on the class schedule for tomorrow during dinner since we were planning on being both out late at the East Lansing Film Festival that night and up late picking groups for Camp Highfields on Saturday. It ended up that the movie was cancelled due to more rain moving through, so that just helped us cover more things in our nightly meeting. During free time, I was in the computer lounge as well as ferrying kids back and forth between there and Shaw. Once that two-hour excursion was over, I stood outside with some of the Astronomy kids while they took the first datapoints of their camp-long moon project.

It was here that things started getting interesting, with meetings with a few students, patrolling of the corridors, moving a student to a different room, a full hall meeting, and various other events on the boys’ floor. Once everything was taken care of, around 2030 or so, we finally started off our meeting with a joke about Darin getting fired. Our meeting lasted really long, since we recounted the various stories from the day, other happenings with the office, looking at some video clips, and creating the Highfields teams, plus the standard amount of goofing around.

All in a day’s work. It’s just weird to think about the fact that we’re already almost at the midpoint of camp. These last days have just flown by…