February 2012 Archives


Summer Camps are not ordinary places. Some might say they are the most extraordinary places on earth. Over the years I have had the privilege of visiting a lot of camps and meeting even more camp professionals. Camp counselors are a unique breed who are willing to give their all to a younger generation, but behind each camp staff is the camp's leadership. They are the people who work tirelessly all year long to make sure that the camp can be the backdrop for extraordinary possibilities. At least the good ones do. When you come across a truly remarkable camp you can bet that the directors of that camp have put their life's sweat and blood into that camp.

Here's an inquiry we get once in a while here at High 5 that always, always puts up a big red flag:

"We'd like to bring our students for a day on your challenge course. We're only interested in the high elements."

See the problem? What this communicates to us is that the group is looking for a thrill experience, as opposed to an educational one, and it may or not be something we want to provide, given our approach to adventure learning.


We're reaching out to our friends in the state of Massachusetts to let you know of a few developments from the MA Department of Public Safety (DPS).

While the DPS has not exercised the right to perform their inspections in the nearly 5 years since the legislation was passed, we have recently been informed via the Association for Challenge Course Technology (ACCT) that state inspectors from the Massachusetts DPS has visited and performed inspections at two or more high schools in the past month. These inspections included a review of all paperwork, a cursory look at equipment and a visual inspection of the challenge course. All 6 state inspectors were present at both inspections.

What does this mean for you? If you operate a belayed challenge course or climbing

Be more creative this year!

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Want to be more creative in 2012?

Well, here are twelve suggestions that you can start using right now to push your creative potential to the limit. I do caution you though, these suggestions may go against what you understand to be acceptable behavior. But, if you're serious about your next masterpiece than giddy up and get going!

1. Talk to yourself out loud and record it. My iPhone has become one of the most valuable creative tools I own. I can record in-the-moment thoughts, record voice memos, take photos and share thoughts from almost anywhere inspirations hits.

831466591_84988ea553_m.jpg2. Doodle when you're thinking. Doodling is grossly misunderstood and enormously powerful.

Recent Comments

  • Rachel Sampson: I would like to try this but can't find where read more
  • Jen Ottinger: Hi Ryan! Great words to live by. read more
  • markcollardinc: Ryan, I saw Michelle Cummings present this exercise earlier this read more
  • markcollardinc: Ditto! We - Ryan, Nate and me - all reading read more
  • markcollardinc: Hey Ryan, why is this activity called Ubuntu CIRCLE when read more
  • higherbeing: Love it! read more
  • Wes: Hi Ryan. I am currently looking into establishing a physics read more
  • Ryan McCormick: Thanks Nate, I love this activity and find useful in read more
  • Nate Folan: Right on Ryan! This activity is very effective. Thanks for read more
  • Ryan McCormick: Well, it depends on the size of the group. With read more