Last week at Hawk Circle, after joining our hearts and minds with thanksgiving and having our snack, there was some curiosity about the plan for the day! I had all of my bandanas out, which can only mean a couple of things – games or blindfolds!
One girl asked, “Are we doing a drum stalk?” Chloe asked what this was and Imogen explained the day that we did our first drum stalk together – a blindfolded test where participants follow the sound of a drum with no use of their eyesight.
I told them that we were not doing that but something similar – a string stalk! I had shown up early to tie a route of yarn in the forest. Here’s how it works. Each girl is blindfolded and places their hand on the string. One by one, they find their way to the end of the route using just their sense of touch.
I reminded the group about Fox Walking, a technique of stepping softly so that before placing one’s foot and weight down, we check to make sure the ground is safe and stable to step. It is also a method of traveling quietly, but in this scenario, it is more for safety, as when we are blindfolded, we never know where we could be stepping!
Pointing down the trail, I asked the girls to look for the orange string. They quickly found it and we got ready for the stalk. After each girl was blindfolded and settled with one hand on the string, I framed the activity. I encouraged each girl to really feel their bodies, their feet on the ground, and the way the string feels in their hand. This is our guide, so it’s important to be connected to our bodies and the string in order to safely make it to the end.
One by one, the Hawks traveled slowly and stepped carefully down the route. It was quite challenging (trust me, I tried it myself before the girls arrived!) as it was at a slight decline and traveled underneath a huge log that had a bit of the ground washed out beneath it.
After each girl finally made it to the end, We went around and shared our experiences. I asked, “how did that go for you? What did you feel?” Many expressed feeling a bit afraid, unsure of themselves. Then I asked, “How did you feel once you made it to the end?” Unanimously, the group felt accomplished and excited! It was a huge deal to make it to the end of the route and each girl felt very proud of herself for achieving something that was so challenging and scary in the moment. I am so proud of each of the girls!!
After an intense beginning to the day, we spent time wandering and playing in the woods. We played on rocks and connected with each other on a more personal level through the play and wandering.
Thanks for reading and I look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow!
Arielle and Melissa