The great PLP 9 retreat

Carefully walking across a rickety bridge about 10 meters in the air all I could think about was how I’m going to get to the next plank of wood. I gripped onto the only other person who was feeling the same amount of fear. Melissa looked at me with fear but she still smiled. She nodded. Bellow I could hear encouragement from my classmates. I took a deep breath and then stepped.


You may think that’s a line from a book or movie or something, but no. That’s an experience that I had when I was doing the high ropes with my friend Melissa in loon lake.


Before I start I should probably explain what loon lake is. Loon lake is a retreat. It’s normally used by UBC students or work groups. Our school had hired a group of people called Pinnacle Pursuits. PLP wanted to further bond the PLP 9 class and create a team. Which is something that I’ll write about later.

We started off the trip by getting introduced to the leader of the program that was leading us, Jonoh. He took us to the field on the property. We were introduced to the other leaders. Brandon and ….. We started off with a bit of an icebreaker. We were divided into half and were tasked with recreating certain items with our bodies.



It was actually really fun and it really introduced us to the next part of our week. We went to our cabins and got all sorted out before we had dinner.


Over the next couple days we had a lot of Jonoh sessions where we learned about building a team. We learned that at the moment we were a group not a team. A group is a bunch of people gathered together and a team is a bunch of people who work together and are bonded together. He said that we were well on our way to becoming a team but we would need to listen to him. We were given booklets that had worksheets in them that we would work on over the next week



The second day we learned a bit about emotional intelligence and how it’s more important than intellectual intelligence. We also talked about our PLP 9 norms. We talked about how they influence us and how we can use them in interacting. 


This part of the trip was interesting but some of the best memories were from the activities. We were split into groups called our animal groups. And we were sent to activities depending on our group. I actually really liked my animal group. Our first group activity was rock climbing. I was preettyyy confident in my abilities but then Jack told me that I should do the hardest one. Under the pressure I eventually said yes. Bigggg mistake. I ended up not finishing it. We had lunch and then we did low ropes. 


One of things we had been learning about was building a team. We learnt a lot about how to keep our emotions in check and what our strengths were. We did a quiz to figure out our specific type of leader.



Now what I’d say was one of the most fun parts and the part where I felt most like a team were the team challenges.


We were divided into our animal groups and then divided again into groups of four. We were assigned a color (ours was blue) and then we were set off into the challenges.



The first challenge was some sort of land skiing. We all had to be really coordinated to do this but my group was kinda just trying our best to move. And we ended up getting second place in that challenge!



There were a couple more challenges and then at dinner the rankings were announced. We all thought that we did poorly but we ended up getting 2nd overall! It was such a fun experience and we really bonded.



I won’t go into many more fine details because this blog post is already too long.


On the last day we were asked to create a goal to carry on something that we learned at loon lake. I decided to make mine about continuing on talking to people that I don’t normally talk to. By the end of loon lake I was sitting with people at lunch that I would have never sat with. Which for me is a step. 


We also had to create a mini exhibition for the parents to showcase our learning at loon lake. We were divided into different groups and we were given a section of what we learned. The sections were: clear communication, social awareness, leadership, internal talk and emotional intelligence. 


I think that this trip was soooo incredibly helpful with PLP and I’m so happy I got to go. 


(Shout out to my bestie Brandon, don’t listen to Jack he doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Ur def gonna get Cara! Just ask her for her phone number. Me and the girls are rooting for you.)





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