Educational

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Race to the Sky has two educational trunks that are used around race time in local schools.  They contain a miniature sled, harnesses, ganglines, dog boots, dog jacket, snow hook, a collar, a video on the vet check,, the movie Call of the Wild 3D (race is viewed in the movie and race footage is in movie), and other items that dog mushers use including a gangline (or towline) that the students can use to “pretend” they are a dog team, headlight, wrist wrap and educational book.  We keep them in Helena and, for now, they cannot be transported by mail because the cost is prohibited.  They are large trunks and have been damaged in the past in shipment.

An educational booklet is available by e-mail info@racetothesky.org but we are hopeful it will be loaded onto the website.  It is 40 pages and has photos, games, crossword puzzles, stories and artwork.  The book discusses teamwork and gives students science, math, social studies and writing assignments to go along with Race to the Sky.  It is geared toward kindergarten – middle school students.  It has been used by many schools and is free to use.  It is copyrighted and may not be used without the express consent of the author (Pam Beckstrom).  Please e-mail info@racetothesky.org if you would like a copy e-mailed to you.  It is a large pdf file!

Racing teams may also be available for school visits on Friday morning (same day as 300 vet check).  School visits are on a first come, first serve basis starting at 9 a.m. and usually last about 45-60 minutes at the most.  We book early for school visits.  Contact info@racetothesky.org for more information.

If you have any questions about the booklet or are located in Helena, would like to book a musher visit or would like to schedule one of the trunks, please e-mail info@racetothesky.org or contact our race manager at sdeveraux2@gmail.com.

Students are encouraged to come to the vet check and schedule a time with one of our International Sled Dog Vets.  Each year, we have several schools bus students to the vet check to watch the sled dogs get their physicals before running the 300 mile race.  Everyone is welcome at the vet check, starts, checkpoints and the finish, including awards ceremonies.

School visits are the highlight of the year for many schools around Helena.  Mushers, over the years, have done school visits in every elementary school in Helena, both traditional and nontraditional, several preschools, junior high schools and even a college course or two.  The schools use the Race to the Sky Educational Book (written by Pam Beckstrom) as their basis to teach the students about teamwork.  They quickly realize they are only a good as their weakest link.

The musher talks about his specific breed of dog, their athletic ability, how they are trained and taken care of, and what their goal is for Race to the Sky.  We encourage the students to think about questions they would like to ask the dog musher.  Dog mushers are very proud of their dogs and the training they have received.  Every dog is as different as every student and most students end up with their “favorite” dog.   The Race flies in International Sled Dog Veterinarians to give each dog a thorough physical before they can run Race to the Sky and to assist during the race. The 300 mile race is challenging and the veterinarians want to know that the dog is ready for such terrain.