The morning begins slowly as we ease into our first day.
We head down to feed the compost to the chickens – they love having us here, because they get bagels…
Monday’s special because it the day we begin – we learn what the project is going to be, and we set to work. And so we gather ’round to hear what we’ll spend the week working on – our masterpiece to-be.
This week, we’ll be building a giant jungle gym, spanning the barn, filled with sub-projects – anything the kids want to build. Minds set to work, cogs spin…
The structure team takes a look at the beam and triangles in the barn roof for inspiration. Michael, Ludmila, Tekuru, and Dora all pitch in ideas.
Pete, one of our collaborators, works with the elevator team: Emma, Lilah, Joey – the excitedly brainstorm.
Gretchen and Isabella want to build a swing – and so they make their ideas a reality. Megan and Kaiden look on.
The structure team builds beams.
Joey tests out the plywood bottom for the elevator.
A team works on a balance beam – to be hung above a still theoretical giant net.
Within the hour, the barn is full of the sound of drills – construction has begun.
Whittling breaks are encourages whenever the tinkerers feel they need one. Isabella takes advantage of that.
The structural beams are going up.
The “zip – line” team works on a wheeled cart that rolls down a track above the ground, with a gondola hanging from the bottom.
Portrait of a Tinkerer: Gretchen, grinning.
Emma and Pete screw the elevator “cabin” together.
Tekuru’s first imaginings of the jungle gym.
After lunch, we gather as a group to reframe the problem – shifting the goals from a triangular tower to two rectangular ones, so the zip – line can span the middle.
Isabella and Ludmilla are building a climbing wall.
Portrait of a Tinkerer – Marco proudly shows off his bandage – he nicked his thumb whittling this morning.
A pointy stick holder. This group has taken pointy sticks to the next level.
The walls for tower two, beginning to go up – it’s getting bigger!
The walls for tower one are coming together too. Michael’s been among the hard workers on that team.
Kaiden screws the walls of tower two in.
The zip-line team discusses. This tight group has a lot of design challenges and finicky bits to think through, and have been attaching the problems as they come up with tremendous patience and persistence .
Portrait of a Tinkerer: Emma pauses her task to glance over.
Portrait of a Tinkerer: Lydia, determined.
Lilah grabs a hammer.
Portrait of a Tinkerer: Isabella, wistful.
Makai, whittling – he, along with the rest of this group, filled with avid whittlerers, are getting good at the craft.
Joey and the elevator team work out a clever solution for creating the hugely long braid they’re working on.
Ryker and Isabella, heading towards the barn together.
Gretchen and Tree. She’s found her niche, climbing up to help attach the pulley system for the elevator test.
Megan tries… and it works. Sort-of. Its a bit “awkward” to ride in, reports Emma. And so it’s back to the barn to tinker with the problem.
Portrait of a Tinkerer: Michael at work.
Portrait of a Tinkerer: Kaiden helps out.
Isabellla’s contracting a miniature village, built out of wood scraps carefully decorated with sharpie.
Aiden tries out the first floor of the first tower. Success!
After a great day in the barn – we have two tower each almost complete to the first floor, we head in for dinner.
Then, it’s time to hit the tire swings.
Tekuru is an developing artist – she lays down on the floor of the first story to draw.
The partially completed deck inspires a group of painter.
We have a jungle gym. It’s begun – the chaos, the huge, ambitious goal of a project that reaches into the sky – or at least the rafters. This team can do it- their energy soars, and the week is just beginning. Let’s build it big!