Five-year-olds in Canterbury’s Trailblazers summer program got the chance to do something other kids only dream about Thursday – one by one, they climbed into the bowels of a whale.
The whale, named Nile, was inflatable. It was a humpback, and from the inside, students could see his ribs, heart, lungs and blowhole.
Nile belongs to Canterbury graduate Cynde McInnis, who has worked with Cape Ann Whale Watch from Gloucester, Mass., as lead naturalist and education coordinator for the past 18 years. She usually works with students in Massachusetts, but tries to provide presentations to children in Fort Wayne when she’s in town.
As students crouched inside the whale, McInnis talked about their mating, breathing and eating. She said whales can weight up to 90,000 pounds – or the equivalent of 12 elephants. When they breathe, she said, the air can shoot out at 100 miles per hour.
Before the students crawled into the whale, they saw a slideshow from which they learned about tooth and baleen whales found off the coast of Massachusetts. At the end of the presentation, they were able to touch artifacts such as baleen, teeth and krill.
Trailblazers is a one-week camp for 5-year-olds that runs from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The camp has a different theme each day, and on Thursday, it was oceans and water fun. The camp is one of several of Canterbury’s summer programs.
Sunjana Nalamolu, 5, held a lantern while she was inside the whale, and peppered McInnis with questions about how they feed and treat their young.
“It looks like a real whale,” she said afterward. “You feel like you are in their tummy. I wish I was a baby whale.”
•Thurgood Marshall Leadership Academy will accept applications for grades kindergarten through eight until 3 p.m. Saturday. Immediately after the deadline, a lottery will be run for any grades in which applications exceed available slots. Applications will be taken after Saturday for any available slots. Students will be placed on a waiting list for grades that are full. Applications are also available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Urban League, Monday through Friday. The Urban League’s address is 2135 S. Hanna St.
•The Cornerstone Youth Center will offer a program to local teens called The Force to give youth in grades seven through 12 soft skills training for the workforce. The program will run from July 9-13 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Cornerstone Youth Center at 19819 Monroeville Road. Interested youth can contact Cornerstone at 623-3972 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
•Memorial Park Middle School’s after-school science team members Olivia Rusk, Michael Rowlett, Ben Tarr and Sylvia Rust finished second in a three-way tie at the national eCYBERMISSION contest this summer in Washington, D.C
•Jeffrey Holbrook, Alyssa Gingerich, Colene Smart, Eden Aker, Kalene Winn, Brooke Jones, Mattew Todd, Mariah Cowans, Drake Atchley, Gabriel Crowder, Matthew Krueger, Danica Forbes, Loruel Nierman, Jason Zwick, Kayla Brunner, Courtney Fender and Ashton Draper are Ivy Tech Choice Scholarship recipients.
•JT Carman, a Leo Junior Senior High School graduate, has been chosen as a 2012 Finalist for the National Merit Scholarship,
•As part of the free college preparation program provided for adult students through the College of Professional Studies, a computer basics course will be offered four times at Blue Jacket Inc., 2826 S. Calhoun St. The course covers basics of computer use such as how to access and navigate the Internet, how to use email, and an introduction to basic applications such as word processing and spreadsheet software. The two-session course will meet from noon to 1:45 p.m. July 12-13, and July 26-27. The course is free, including textbooks and materials, and open to any adult based on space availability. To register, call 888-832-4742. For more information on the free college prep program, visit www.IndianaTech.edu/CPS.