The kennel is my safe haven and home. I have come to be relaxed here as a retired sled dog…but I remember back when I was young. I played, ran, howled, was very curious and investigated everything. Sometimes I found myself in the wrong place at the wrong time. Recently the kennel kids were outside playing a game. I happened to overhear them holler, “Now, here’s the rules.” Rules…they are everywhere even here where I live!
Where have your students been exposed to “rules”? Perhaps at home, in the classroom, at your school, within the community, on a sport’s team, etc. Have students share various rules from these places with one another.
Why do people and organizations create rules? What is the process of establishing rules/laws within our country? This would be a great opportunity for your classroom to delve into the legislative process of our government. How are laws introduced, debated or amended, voted upon and signed into action? Who are some of the important people involved within the process?
The Iditarod Sled Dog Race has its own set of rules. Your students can explore and read the Official Iditarod Race Rules for 2018. Look for the age requirement, dates for submitting entry forms, mandatory stops, sled requirements, mandatory equipment, maximum and minimum number of dogs, rules for passing, use of electronic devices, drop bags, awards that can be earned during the race, etc. Divide the class into small groups and assign each group a specific rule or rules to read, discuss and present to the rest of the class.
How many of you have heard of the Junior Iditarod for young adults ages 14-17? This race is usually run the weekend before the Iditarod Sled Dog Race and is a 150 mile race from Willow to Yentna, stay overnight for a 10 hour mandatory layover, and return the next morning to Willow. Get onto the Junior Iditarod website to have your students explore the Junior Iditarod 2018 Rules for that race. Once again, divide rules up for students to read, discuss and share. Look for the same types of items explored within the Official Iditarod Rules…age requirement, dates for submitting entry forms, mandatory stops, sled requirements, mandatory equipment, maximum and minimum number of dogs, etc.
Now take the information from both sets of rules and create a Venn diagram comparing/contrasting the two sets. Have your students articulate their observations.
Add an additional element to this compare/contrast activity. Have students identify their favorite sport and investigate its rules. Compare/contrast those rules to the Iditarod Sled Dog Race rules and/or the Junior Iditarod Race.
Teachers….one additional assignment for you! Have you ever thought of being a Teacher on the Trail™ for Iditarod? Check out the rules and application process for applying to be the next Teacher on the Trail™.
Well, time for me to return to the dog lot and see what the children are up to now. Perhaps the new puppies need a few ideas from me on the “rules” of the kennel. I know one that needs to be enforced at all times…..rest time for Sled Dog Ed!!!!
~Sled Dog Ed