Forest Folk School Features Intergenerational Learning Experience

Tom Colbert (left), his son, Darius, and his father, Brian of Vestaburg, PA, recently worked together to make an intergenerational dream come true: building a canoe that will be a family treasure for years to come.

Tom Colbert, his father, Brian Colbert and his son, Darius, all of Vestaburg, PA, had an experience of a lifetime when they contacted the Forest Folk School to see if it would be possible for them to “build a canoe” together that would become a family “treasure” for years to come. After consultation with Forest Folk School personnel, a plan was put in place to secure a canoe building kit, then schedule approximately 100 hours during the month of June for Tom and his family to work with “Sparky” the Forest Folk School’s resident canoe building instructor. While the initial process of learning the procedures of canoe building was time consuming, the personal bonding that occurred among the Colbert family members, along with Sparky, was incredible. As an observer, it was clear to witness the camaraderie of the group, working as a team for several hours, laughing, joking, learning, and enjoying each other’s company, as well as their special time together. Mutual care, respect and lots of fun was definitely evidenced throughout the 100 hours of work the guys pursued and the greatest outcome was the beautiful canoe they had created!

As the originator of the idea to build a canoe together, Tom stated, “I relish the time I get to spend with my dad and son and to be able to build such a wonderful canoe with them is truly a God-send! I have enjoyed the instruction from Sparky and the staff at the Folk School and look forward to other projects they offer.” Brian, (Tom’s father), who had recently retired, was excited at the thought of completing a project such as building a canoe with his son and grandson! The beauty of intergenerational learning is that the family bonding which occurs is immeasurable and can happen right here at the Forest Folk School!

Brian Colbert, his grandson Darius , and son, Tom, stood by the “almost finished” canoe, awaiting the time for the maiden voyage of their now known “2016 Colbert Canoe!”

If you and/or your family members are interested in pursuing a project such as the Colberts achieved, please contact the Forest Folk School, 814.931.8748 for further information. Various sizes of canoe kits are available and can be built under the tutelage of Sparky, our resident “boat builder.”