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Kerrie Craske- Teacher & Learner

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." -Nelson Mandela

Category

Learning Project

Summary of Learning: Being an Archer

Who knew you could learn archery online… and be relatively successful with it! I have truly enjoyed my learning project experience and it is something I will continue on in the future.

My 4 key learning’s:

  • Be patient and reflective- To begin I was not seeing much progress. I began to be reflective on how much I was achieving, especially because archery was a new sport to me. I learned that success will only come with practice.
  • There is always room for growth- Archery is such a great sport for improving on. It allows you to continue to challenge yourself, whether it is increasing distance, draw weight, target size, or purpose of sport. You can never get bored of archery!
  • Seek sources online and offline- I never knew technology could be so helpful in teaching me about archery skills. I found endless resources including manuals, YouTube instructional videos, articles, podcasts, and archery safety guides just to name a few. It was also beneficial to meet with sources offline to help give verbal guidance and feedback at the exact time of learning.
  • Use additional technology to aid in your learning– Doing this project has taught me how to use other aspects of technology. This includes blogging about my progress in a creative and engaging way, using my digital camera, and developing YouTube videos on iMovie.

What I Achieved:

 I am happy to say that I achieved many of my goals from the beginning of my learning project that I had set out for myself.

  • Knowing about different types of bows- the most suitable bow for me was a simple compound bow- I still have the opportunity to add a release aid and sights.
  • Understanding proper shooting form and the steps to shooting an arrow- see my tutorial video here.
  • Learning about the different components of the bow from Hunters Safety and Youtube.
  • Hitting different targets at different ranges 
  • Being safe
  • Consulting with a longtime archer to hear perspectives.

The goals I would still like to achieve are:

  • Participating in an archery event (I hope to attend a 3D archery shoot close to my hometown this summer)
  • Adding a sight/release aid to my compound bow and increasing the draw weight.
  • Increasing my distance past 15 yards.
  • Talking and meeting with other archery professionals.

Growth:

I put together a little video to show my growth and progress over the course of my learning project. Check it out!

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Link to video  

Recommendations for Learning Online:

  • Youtube was best online resource for learning a sport, but be selective! Some videos I found were so long and irrelevant. It’s important to find good followers like Howcast.
  • Articles were eye opening and helped me understand my learning experience better. They gave me different perspectives, and kept me up to date on the newest archery topics. Feedly was a great online tool in helping me find these articles. I also followed some archery accounts on Twitter.
  • “Other” resources like guides and manuals were great in guiding me in what to do. I really enjoyed my Saskatchewan Hunter’s Safety section of archery which walked me through step-to-step procedures. You have to be willing to search up anything and EXPLORE the web!

 

How to Achieve Archery Success

Do you know the steps to archery success? This week I wanted to learn a little bit more about them to make sure I was being successful and following the correct steps when shooting the bow. I found a variety of steps online. The Archer, who I follow on Feedly demonstrated 10 basic steps to archery. NASP talks about 11 archery steps that you need to take in order to be successful. I decided I would combine different parts of each.

This week I challenged myself with creating a “how to” video to demonstrate to others the 11 steps to archery success. I have never done a video like this before and felt a little bit out of my comfort zone, but it was great practice. I learned that I need to take more time to explain things! I forgot one really important message in my video though, when aiming at the target, your dominant eye must be open, and your non-dominant eye must be closed! In order to know which eye is dominant, check out my previous blog post.Screen Shot 2016-04-04 at 7.42.02 AM

Follow this link to watch my quick guide to archery success.

If the video doesn’t make much sense to you, I’ve created my own manual guide that explains what each of the steps mean.

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What are your experiences in creating a “how to” video? Did you find it difficult, fun, or a great learning experience?

An Archer’s Perspective

I am only a beginning archer. I know I have much more to learn and I have so much opportunity for growth. I thought it would be interesting to hear a perspective from an archer that has been shooting for a long time. I decided to talk with a friend Bailey Steciuk. She began shooting at young age of 3 (with rubber arrows), and has now been doing the sport for 15 years.

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Bailey Steciuk

These were some aspects of archery that I wanted to discover from a passionate archer:

  1. What has been the most rewarding thing about archery?

A: I really like the opportunities to travel to different places. Being on Team Canada was pretty great too. Team Canada is the top 16 shooters from all of Canada in grades 4-12. Another great feeling is having younger children look up to me and want to shoot like me when they get older.

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Bailey shooting for Team Canada at NASP World Tournament.
  1. What has been your biggest challenge?

A: Probably nerves… I guess the only way to overcome them is with more practice and experience in competitions.

  1. How do you continue to find interest in the sport and challenge yourself?

A: I constantly increase my goals, always trying to do better than the time before. In archery competitions, I aim for a higher score each time.

  1. Do you think archery has helped you in other areas of your life?

A: Math. Especially when I was younger, it really helped me with my adding when I had to add up scores. Its also helped me concentrate and focus a lot more. Archery has taught me dedication and commitment.

  1. Is archery an inclusive sport? Why would you recommend it to others?

A: Everyone can do archery. I would recommend it to others because of the experiences it provides. You can travel to a lot of places, and meet new people who are interested in the same thing as you. Archery is an easy sport to get in to and it’s relatively inexpensive.

Due to Bailey succeeding in a variety of events, I thought it would be interesting to see if her identity showed up online. Based off of my research, I learned another way we can form our positive digital identities- through our hobbies, interests and sports that we participate in. This is great for students to understand. Bailey has already begun her positive digital identity online before graduating. Check it out here:

This week I have learned that archery is a sport that provides numerous opportunities beyond just shooting a bow. Archery is a sport that you can constantly set goals and improve on. Archery is great for people to develop social interaction, travel to different places, and build commitment and concentration.

Out on the Range

Lately I have been focusing on hitting a target in archery. I wanted to expand on this by shooting at different ranges. This week I shot at a range of 10 yards and 15 yards. I hope to get my target on point at 15 and then further increase my distance. I had a little competition with my boyfriend and he could shoot at 40 yards what I could shoot at 10 yards…I have a little practicing to do!

I used a range finder to measure my distance. This is a great tool to use. Its handy, accessible and very simple.

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Range Finder 

Before practicing, I looked at some tips for shooting at a long range. I learned from Cobra Archery  that if you are shooting at long ranges, you need to have proper grip and to follow through until the arrow hits the target. I also revisited my Feedly account and learned more from a very valuable and reliable source that I have used throughout my learning project journey, Archery360. It taught me about the different ranges for different types of archery. In indoor field archery, most archers shoot at a range of 20 yards. However, outdoor field archery’s shoot at a variety of ranges, from 10 yards all the way up to 80 yards. I eventually want to try 3-D archery at an outdoor range, which would give me the opportunity to shoot at different distances.

On Youtube, the archer talked about trying to shoot at longer distances when practicing so when it comes time to shoot for success, you can be confident in your ability to shoot because you will be closer to the target.

This is how my practicing went at different ranges this week:

Check out the video of me practicing  here. As you can see by my second shot, I am pretty excited I hit the center of the target! Let me know if you have had any experience with archery and shooting at different ranges.

 

Archer Tech

Is learning archery on the Internet ideal? Not really. Has it been an interesting experience so far? You bet! When I first chose archery as my learning experience, I was a little worried about how much I would find online, as its quite a hands on sport. Being able to do this project online has allowed me to really expand my knowledge on technology and dig deep into what tools are available online.

I wanted to see what other resources I could look into in regards to technology. This week I chose to focus on articles.

In A Beginners Guide to Archery by Jemima Kiss, she talked about her experiences with archery that I can now resonate with.

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– Jemima Kiss

I find that I need a constant reminder about the steps to follow when doing archery. Learn Archery reviewed those steps with me with great visuals to help me understand exactly what I need to be doing.

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Among my research, I came across an interesting article from the New York Times. The Odds Are Ever in Their Favour mentions that ever since The Hunger Games came out, more young girls have been interested in archery and joining the sport. Archery has become a popular trend, even beyond practicing to compete.

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Courtney Rubin

Oh! And about last weeks blog revealing the truth behind the “golden bow”. Thanks to Carli Cooper and Shelby King for taking a guess. This bow was earned by my boyfriend’s sister. Only people who have won 1st place in a national championship in National Archery in the Schools Program receive it. I thought this was an interesting fact, and it related back to my previous post about NASP and the benefits of archery in schools.

The Truth Behind the Golden Bow

Does anyone know what it means to have a golden bow, just like the one I have been practicing with? As I was practicing this weekend with my boyfriend, I learned that the golden bow is earned- you can’t just go out and buy one. I thought it was just a random bow he gave me to use! Comment on my blog to guess how the bow is earned. I will let you know next week.

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The golden bow.

Anyway… I needed a recap on shooting at archery targets. Last time I practiced, my aim was hitting the same place, but it wasn’t towards the center of the target where I would have liked it. I also wanted to understand what would change in my shooting technique if I increased the draw weight of my bow as it seemed too easy to pull back.

I have found Youtube really helpful during my learning experience journey. However, finding videos to help me this time was more difficult. I found a lot of bad ones, but some helpful ones.

This is what I found:

Michael Peart from  Sports and Outdoors recommended using a sight on the bow for better aim. This is something I would like to try during my learning project- he taught me how to use a sight and a release aid.

Al Lizzio from Howcast taught me that at a closer target, the position of my fingers on the string determines where the arrow will hit. Where you place your fingers on the bow string determines the angle the arrow will go. I took his advice and wanted to try putting my fingers further down the string and practice shooting at a closer distance. I really enjoy his videos; they have helped me learn other archery techniques in the past.

Ike’s Outdoors taught me how to determine proper draw weight. Try holding the bow string back (with an arrow for safety!) for 1 minute. If you can hold it comfortably, it is the correct draw weight. A low poundage draw weight results in more accuracy rather than me shooting a high poundage draw weight that is difficult for me to pull back.

Please check out my video of what I accomplished this week!

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Click on the video link above!

Archery in Schools

Believe it or not, archery in schools can benefit students behaviour, self-awareness, focus and overall health. The benefits of learning archery in schools are endless. I wanted to learn through the internet why we should teach archery in schools, and what archery programs are offered in Canadian schools.

BENEFITS

In the CLASSROOM…

I read an interesting news article which highlighted how archery skills help students in the classroom. Below are real life benefits that are seen by other teachers in the classroom due to archery.

benefits seen by other teachersSchools have the possibility of using archery programs (or any sport program) as a means of improving student’s grades.

What are your thoughts on this? Do you think putting a specific grade limit into joining a sport helps increase students academics, teaches them to give up, or something else?

For Children’s HEALTH…

An article I discovered written by Jack Gerard discusses the health benefits of archery. Some include:

  • upper body strength, walking exercise
  • balance, coordination and mental focus

OVERALL…

My favourite article discusses all of the reasons to teach archery to children.  Here are some the article presents:

  • one of the safest sports
  • can be done year round (indoors and outdoors)
  • archery is for everyone (it is adaptable for people with disabilities)
  • develops better behaviour in students
  • teaches goal setting ( by increasing distances or shooting at smaller targets)
  • builds confidence and self-awareness

The final one that really stood out to me was teaching students self-discipline.self discipline quote

National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP)

This program was developed to serve educational and conservation purposes. It is supported by many Wildlife Conservation agencies, as they believe too many young people are being disconnected from the outdoors. Their goal is to inspire children to spend more time in the wild and outdoors. This program is offered for students in 4th to 12th grade.

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Archery is a growing sport in many schools. What are your thoughts on introducing archery into schools? Have you seen any benefits based off of your personal experiences?

My Car is Teaching Me About Archery

I frequently drive long distances on the weekend, and I often think about all the homework I should be doing or get bored listening to the radio. I now found a way that I can learn while driving!

I wanted to look into new ways I could learn about archery and hear different perspectives of archers through the use of technology. I remembered back to when I used to listen to a podcast on Youtube about living a positive lifestyle. I looked into more about podcasts and found some helpful information. I learned that podcasts are now becoming a more popular trend and people who podcast are really passionate about a particular subject. They are easy to download and are often free to listen to!

As part of my learning project, I wanted to find podcasts that talked about archery. After some research, I found The Best Bowhunting and Archery Podcasts. Through this, I had the opportunity to explore a variety of podcasts. Lots were based on bowhunting, and I wanted to find ones that talked about the techniques and skill of archery. Eventually I found Nock OnThe main host of this podcast is John Dudley. He often talks about how target archers can improve their skills.

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I’m really enjoying some of his podcasts. I am able to select the ones that I want, download them onto my phone for free, and then listen to them as I drive. I have already listened to a few driving around the city and on my weekend trip. I’ve learned about how to stabilize the bow, how to maintain my release hand position, how to anchor my body, and how to perform bow maintenance.

I think podcasts are a great way to learn new information or just for enjoyment. They are basically accessible anywhere once downloaded, and I am able to stop and start listening to them without having to worry about losing them like I could a Youtube video.

I recommend looking up podcasts that highlight your learning projects or things that interest you. Let me know what you discover!

 

Amateur Archer Adventures

Who knew hitting a target could be so difficult? I have only had archery practice once, but I thought that it is important to start actually aiming at something for safety purposes. Before I practiced hitting a target, I checked out a few things on the internet first.

Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 9.57.06 PMRecently, Whitney Czerwonka commented on my blog and recommended I check out Feedly for archery blogs. I did so, and found some relevant blogs to my learning experience, including Archery Talk and Archery 360. I discovered an interesting article that highlights 3 mistakes archers make. I need to remember to stay put, anchor myself, and breathe deeply!

 

Next, I checked out youtube for videos on archery accuracy and I found Sean from outdoor adventures. This is what he taught me:Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 10.02.04 PM

  • keep muscles in the palm relaxed and have a relaxed grip
  • make sure bow poundage is not too high at full draw
  • don’t tense the shoulder, neck and back muscles
  • look right at the target and find anchor point
  • don’t move your head around and be consistent

Critique:

  • all information was new and valuable to my learning
  • Sean talks quick and to the point, and shows real life demonstrations
  • I would have liked to see him shoot at the target

Check out my target shootingI felt a lot more comfortable shooting the bow this time. My aim is shooting to the left for some reason, so I will need to learn why. On the other hand, it is good that all of my arrows are hitting the same place as this shows I am not moving my head and I’m being consistent.

 Have you ever struggled learning a new sport or skill? What was the most challenging part to overcome?

 

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