In front of Christy Procida, her son and current sophomore Luca, former student Seth Kelly and sophomores Chardonnay Needler, Allison Zhang, Emily Hayes and Blake Lincoln take a group picture during their field trip to Sutter's Fort.

(Photo used by permission of Christy Procida)
In front of Christy Procida, her son and current sophomore Luca, former student Seth Kelly and sophomores Chardonnay Needler, Allison Zhang, Emily Hayes and Blake Lincoln on their 2010-11 field trip to Sutter’s Fort.

On the annual trip to Sutter’s Fort, not all the students will be 11 years old. Some will be 16 or 17.

That’s because high schoolers from the general and AP chemistry classes will be joining the fourth graders on the trip, Feb. 28-March 1.

The fourth-grade class has only 24 students, so it needs more volunteers in addition to parents, said Brooke Wells, head of high school.

Fourth-grade teacher Pamela Livesey said that the high schoolers will “enhance the experience for the kids” because “the little kids really like the idea of having the big kids come with them.”

Livesey said she hopes to have the chemistry students work some of the booths with the parent volunteers.

She also plans on having the older students dress up as pioneers like the fourth graders. Costumes will be provided by the fourth-grade teachers.

The fourth-grade class and parent volunteers take their annual picture outside of the fort's historical main office.

(Photo used by permission of Christy Procida)
The fourth-grade class and parent volunteers take their annual picture outside of the fort’s historical main office in 2010-11.

In addition, sophomore Mehdi Lacombe said that chemistry teacher Victoria Conner told the chemistry students that they may help make soap at the fort.

While the high-school students will dress up, they will not sleep over like the fourth-graders.

Sophomore Luca Procida said that he’s excited to be returning to the fort and not disappointed about not spending the night, even though it was one of the most memorable parts of the trip when he was a fourth grader.

“I remember that we had a night-time hunt for bears and robbers with the night-watchers, who were some of the dads of people in our class; I enjoyed that,” Procida said.

“We also got to sleep in tents at a place that we really hadn’t spent the night at before, and so that was really fun. For a little kid it was a foreign experience.”

Terry Harvago, father of former middle-school student Hank and current eighth grader Charlie, and Andrew Sackheim, father of sophomore Benett, teach fourth graders to make and brand wooden boxes at a station in Sutter's Fort.

(Photo used by permission of Christy Procida)
Terry Harvego, father of former student Hank and current eighth grader Charlie, and Andrew Sackheim, father of sophomore Benett, teach the 2010-11 fourth graders to make and brand wooden boxes at a station in Sutter’s Fort.

Procida said that he’s most looking forward to making candles and visiting the blacksmith.

Junior Carlos Nuñez also remembers the night time experience best.

“They woke us up in the middle of the night and took us to wherever, a grave or something, and a giant bear jumped out,” Nuñez said.

“But then (my group) had hot chocolate and went back to sleep; it was kind of like a dream.”

By David Situ

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