I discovered the hobby of Geocaching two years ago while at a NCCE conference. I soon borrowed some GPS units from our ESD and did some more exploring. Erik and I went to Zion National Park for Spring Break that year. I had brought along information on several caches in the area. We had a great time exploring that beautiful area with GPS in hand. We definitely went to places we wouldn't have gone if we were not geocaching. In fact, in a rented car, we probably went places we shouldn't have gone. I remember one of the finds was up on this mesa overlooking Zion Canyon. It had been raining and there was a beautiful rainbow. Since then, I have purchased my own GPS and have had fun searching out treasures. When I went to Honduras and Denmark and Norway the summer before last, it was fun to track my points and watch the elevation. Didn't do any geocaching along the way though. (That would have been cool.) Last Christmas I introduced the hobby to my nephews. Since then, they have become true geocachers. They have logged over 125 finds. It is a great thing for them to do as a family. That is another thing that I really love about this hobby is that it is such a neat way to be together as a family. Last May, I again borrowed the GPS units from the ESD. I hid a whole series of caches downtown. My class walked down and in groups, spent the day geocaching. They loved this fieldtrip more than any other we took. It cost nothing and it was pouring down rain most of the time. Students had to use clues, directions and teamwork to find what they were looking for. Lots of great problem solving. My new class this year came in asking when they would get to go geocaching. I haven't done any geocaching since summer. When I went to Texas to see my nephews, we went out again. We checked on the caches we had hidden and found new ones. When I was on my way to the airport, my nephew told me that geocaching is a lot more fun with me than with his dad. I told him that he should treasure that time with his dad, but I was also pleased that he treasured the time with me as well. When I got back to Washington, I had to do some more caching. Yesterday Roswell and I went out in the rain and the wind and found 6 new caches. What a fun way to get outside, see new things and use your brain.
One neat idea I had for the classroom is to send out a Travel Bug. I thought that we could make it a Heifer Bug. We could put info about Heifer on the Bug. The kids could track his travels on Google Earth.