Day 4 Building (and playing) and the Ethno-Botanist

         The howler monkeys were loud as ever this morning. Luckily we had earplugs. Breakfast was as normal, except for the fact that they had quesadillas! After breakfast, we went straight to the project. At the elementary school, we started setting up for the kids. They loved it! We taught them how to play volleyball, tetherball, and basketball. They worked on soccer with Matthew, Clara, and Ella.
          When we came back, we rested, and then we went to some families’ houses for lunch. We were at the same house. They served us spaghetti and rice. They also had pineapple juice and homemade plantain chips. Then we got a tour of the farm. They had all sorts of animals and fruits like pigs and plantains.

         Then, we went to the ethno botany class where we saw all sorts of Costa Rican plants like star fruit, and we all got our own coconuts filled with water and coconut meat. The ethno-botanist even gave us homemade ice cream!

       When we got back, there was a massive storm starting, there were loud cracks with racks of thunder and lightning, and the power went out. The boys sat around and talked while the girls sat in the one room with power (though it was off) reading and praying. Dinner was good, and they had power back in the kitchen. We performed skits in the dining hall and had our anchor session too. Then we went to bed.
By Henry Gaudet and Annie Marks

Day 3 Build and Ziplining!

Today we ate a delicious breakfast. We went to the Chilamate Elementary School, and it started off when they had recess, and I played soccer with most of the boys there. Then I started at the playground with Adger threading the rope through the wood holes so the little kids were safer on the play structure. I also picked weeds with Dhru and Charlotte then I swept the platforms on the playground with Dhru and Adger.

After we were done with work we had a popsicle party with the sixth graders at the school. The flavors were grape and tutti fruiti. We played with them. We played soccer, jump rope, and basketball. We headed back and have down time. After lunch we headed to the ziplining place. There we zipped through the rain forest and shopped in the store.
On the zip lines we went on trails and on wires. We were taught to break on the wires before we stopped and where to keep our hands and feet. Then the teachers ordered us up into a line that we would be going on to zipline. We went fast and slow. Also we got a little wet because of the rain, but it felt really good because we were hot. After we finished off in the rainforest for zip lining the teachers gave us a surprise by bringing us to an ice cream shop where there were many different flavors to chose from. I was especially thankful, because the teachers were kind enough to pay for every piece of ice cream that we had. I really enjoyed it.
By Clara Ellis, Reed Millner, and Dhru Lalaji

Building day 2 and farming!

​We started off the day by going to the worksite, Chilamate Elementary School. First, we played an intense game off soccer with the school kids. Then we spilt up to work on cleaning up the playground, painting lines for the basketball court, painting equipment, and mixing cement for tetherball poles.
​Afterwards we went to an organic, sustainable farm. For lunch we had chicken, rice, beans, plantains, pasta salad, picadillo, and to drink we had strawberry juice and orchata. Don Daniel told us his story about how and why he started his organic, sustainable farm.


​After lunch we went to go have a tour of the farm. First we fed the pigs, and then we made compost. Next, we harvestedpeppercorn.

Then we all tried the peppercorn. It was so spicy!!!Will broke the peppercorn eating record. He ate 16!!! We harvested a bucketful. Afterwards we got to see Don Daniel’s vanilla plants. Finally, we went back and had a snack. For snack we had delicious pancakes and coffee or sugar cane water. Then we headed back to the eco-retreat for the night.


By: Matthew Wells, Morgan Goldstrom, and Reita Maguire


Rainforest hike and day 1 at the school

Today we went on a hike in the jungle! We saw so many insects, animals, and plants. My favorite thing we saw was the howler monkeys, because they were so cute. One of the scariest things we saw was the bullet ant, the bullet ant has the most powerful insect sting in the world. There were some cool plants too. For example, “hot lips” are a flower that looks just like bright red lips. I also enjoyed learning about the “monkey brush,”, which isa plant that has little spikes around its exterior so that the monkeys can brush themselves. 
Next, we went to the Chilamate school and got to play soccer and basket ball. the children only spoke Spanish, so we got to practice our Spanish with them. The kids were in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade and they were so cute. 
After that, we cleaned the playground. We swept, raked, and pick out the cilantro plants. I actually found it kind of fun!


by Carly Cannon, Mary Ellis Irvin, and Jaxon-Praise Perez