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Ranger's Apprentice Day Camp Idea List

The goal with Ranger's Apprentice Training Camp is a straightforward one: bring the books to life. Since your kids are such huge Ranger's Apprentice fans and have basically memorized the books you may find it more useful to create an environment, with engaging backstories, that run parallel to the stories in John Flanagan's books without copying the books themselves. This approach allows your campers to become their own Apprentice/Ranger characters within the world of Araluen, without worrying about who gets to play the part of their favorite book character. Camper participation in the story is what makes this whole idea work. Your Apprentices will get to have adventures and go on missions as their own story unfolds over the course of their camp session. There are a wide variety of Ranger skills you can teach; all of them are right out of the books. This is what we've decided to offer our Apprentices ­ feel free to come up with your own ideas. Tracking humans and animals Camouflage Covert Movement Orienteering Archery Double Scabbard fighting technique Plant identification/Medicinal/Edible plants Field First Aid Rock Climbing Handtohand combat training Observation tactics Diplomacy Araluen Battle School/Temujai/Ariddi/Skandian military tactics

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A story driven day camp provides ample opportunities to learn and utilize critical lateral problem solving skills. The story invites campers to use creative play and teamwork to win the day. An effective story arc should last all five days of your camp. This continuity of storyline will allow you to get your campers involved in what's happening to/around them. We favor a whole learning approach to the camp experience. We try to make meaningful connections between history, mythology, folklore, literature, art, music, science, sports, current events, language and rampant creativity. Don't hesitate to use the following resources in your area. They are perfect fits for adding atmosphere and depth to your immersive camping experience. Investigate what's available in your region. High School/College Acting Departments (Utilize their costume, prop, set design and makeup folks too) The Local S.C.A. Groups/Renaissance Faire performers (A great place to get costumed villains, Knights/Royalty) (Great for period musicians too) (Many Renn. Faires employ fight/stunt coordinators ­ use them) Historical Reenactment Societies (Great for Temujai/Ariddi/Skandian Warriors & encampments) Martial arts instructors (Teach different cultural fighting techniques ­ Temujai/Arridi) (Double Scabbard technique ­ Eskrima works for this really well) (Remember safety, safety, SAFETY!) Safety training weapons are easily made of PVC pipe/foam insulation/duct tape. Nothing dresses up your camp like involving a bunch of Renn Faire and historical reenactment groups. They can bring tents and props and costumed people, appropriate to the period, to create an entire medieval village setting for your story to inhabit. Contact them early and tell them what you are doing. Many of these amazing people are looking for another opportunity to get back into costume and entertain your campers. They'll love being a part of your camp story and they'll love that it's a program based on children's literature!

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Everything you'll be doing for your Apprentices can be wrapped around your camp's story. Your campers should feel as if they are in a different place and time, struggling against an opponent who has them up against the rails. As they learn a new useful skill, write in a way for them to go out and use it to stop the villain(s). Each day a new mission/assignment presents you with some amazing teachable moments and heart pounding action. If you utilize a stunt/fight coordinator have them train your actors to choreograph believable fights. Your Apprentices can witness these spectacular fights during the week. Bring in other cultures from The Ranger's Apprentice books. It will add depth and provide some additional teachable moments about these cultures and the parts they play in your camp story. For instance you could have a Temujai/Scandian/Arridi performer put on a display of combat tactics. Have these folks involved in your camp story with vital roles to play. Your Apprentices will love it. A quick note on story creation. We have discovered over the years that a good engaging story is one that promotes a tiny bit of competitive divisiveness between fife groups but ultimately unifies them in purpose and spirit. Your counselors will have the ultimate responsibility of driving the story home to your campers. It will be up to them to both build Fife pride, establish their groups unique characteristics and then lead the campers into an understanding that a unified camp (teamwork) is the only way to stop the villain and save the kingdom. If the campers feel as though they have arrived at this understanding on their own the realization is far more profound. As a camp director, surround yourself with welltrained, passionate storytellers who know the ins and outs of The Ranger's Apprentice books. Let them help you plan the story. The potential for creating a dynamic and engaging storyline is increased dramatically by having these people help out with the planning. Good luck!

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Microsoft Word - Ranger's Resource List.docx