Dog Sled Runner Visits MSP
Posted on 03/21/2019
MSP students with alaskan racing dogsPlainville resident and dog sled runner, Joan Kaczmarczyk, visited the Middle School of Plainville on March 14th to speak with sixth graders about the care and training of sled dogs and the sport of sled racing. Students are involved with a unit of study in English Language Arts classes and read Gary Paulsen’s Woodsong where they learned of Paulsen’s experiences running his dogs in the Iditarod.
During the unit, each student chose a musher to follow in this year's Iditarod race and searched daily to see their musher's position. They read daily blogs and viewed photos and videos which were sent from the race, and they were able to track their musher's progress by GPS through the Iditarod's website.
Ms. Kaczmarczyk was an excellent source of information for students. Her presentation included an explanation of the features of the dog sled, a 'meet and greet' with her six Alaskan Huskies by the sixth graders and an informational study of the sled the musher uses during the Iditarod.
Even with milder temperatures, students were able to see two of the dogs run the sled on the little snow that remained. The program ended with a question and answer session in the auditorium with Joan to further students' understanding of the care and treatment of sled dogs.
In addition, sixth grade students and faculty raised and donated $400 for Ms. Kaczmarczyk to donate to her favorite sled dog charity in Fairbanks, Alaska.