YOUTH RESOURCES REPORT
By George and Rena Everett
August/September 1999 Lodestar (SFMS Newsletter)
FROM THE JUNIOR POINT OF VIEW
The third junior interviewed was Matthew Huber, a very mature 13 year-old. Matthew is fortunate to belong to two gem and mineral clubs, one in Memphis and one in Jackson,
When asked how he became interested in rocks and minerals, he smiled and said, "I was born." It appears that no human intervention was necessary this time. The Memphis club has a very active (and separate) Junior group; in Jackson, the Juniors go to the adult meetings; so Matthew has insight into both worlds. He said that he likes the Pebble Pup program in Memphis just fine and enjoys going to the meetings and field trips. What he likes most about the Jackson club is being treated as an adult - being exposed to new things that he hasn't know about before, being treated like a real person instead of like a kid. His very favorite thing in the Jackson club is the workshop where he can go and cut cabs twice a week.
His advice to other clubs is to first recruit junior members and then, when it becomes necessary, form a separate junior club. Always be aware of the different ages of the juniors and try to have something for everyone. If you get kids, you get parents, too. The kids tell their friends, and the parents tell their friends, and the club grows.
When I asked him who broke who into this rockhounding hobby, he said, "I broke Mom
in," and he hastened to say that she has, "always been very supportive." They really got serious about rockhounding on a field trip to Mt. Ida, Arkansas four years ago. Mother, Ann, agreed to take Matthew there. Unknown to him, this was a test to see if he was really interested or if this was just a phase. He was
INTERESTED. They hunted quartz the first day; they hunted quartz the second day; and he was not happy when they had to return home. When he got home, he studied how the quartz formed, what is was used for, and anything else he could find about it. He didn't collect quartz just to decorate his room.
After returning from Mt. Ida, Ann realized that she, too had been hooked. She and Matthew have traveled three times with Camp Carver, and they hunt rocks every opportunity they have. All of this enthusiasm must have been contagious. Dad, Steve, saw the beauty in Matthew's cabs and began wire-wrapping, and just recently, little sister, Rachel, 6, has also started to try her hand at wire-wrapping.
These interviews have proven to us that the old adage, "Out of the mouths of babes . . . .
"' is true. We can learn a lot from the younger generation.