Grade 6 had a wonderful, adventurous trip to Loowit (Mt. St. Helens) in mid-October. The trip was tied into their Geology block, in which students studied the science of the forces of the earth and how they affect the landscape around us, as well as minerals, rocks and the ways humans use them. Volcanology was a part of our block, and students learned about the eruption of Loowit in 1980, then visited the mountain, viewing the devastation and regrowth. We journeyed through Ape Caves (a 1.5 mile underground lava tube) with headlamps and lots of bravery! We also camped beside the Toutle River, visited several visitors centers, and hiked at the foot of the mountain in the misty fall rain. This was a challenging, adventurous, and exciting trip—a rite of passage in many ways for the students.

—Ashley Mullen-Umlauf, Grade 6 Teacher

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