I've long been fascinated with mystery, devouring new theories on historical anomalies such as the disappearing cultures, evidence of historic events and the building of ancient monuments. There are as many theories as to how ancient sites such as Stongehenge were built, and are there are on theories of why they were built, but this morning I discovered an interesting new one at New Scientist.
The benefits of team building have long been known, promoting cooperation, integration and improving relations between strangers and colleagues, but could team building have been a main purpose of historic monument building?
Research has shown that historic monuments have largely been built during times of stress and upheaval, and have been completed in empires with a wide variety of societal structure, including those with no clear leadership. Historical knowledge and archaelogical research have led researchers to the surprising conclusion that many famous ancient structures were built by teams involving thousands of volunteers, often coming from different regions and ethnic groups. This revelation has sparked new debate, as to whether team building could have been one of the primary reasons for our ancient monuments, or whether the benefits were a lucky side effect which has helped to create and stabilise human society during times of turmoil.
Either way, it seems as though team building was a 'thing; much earlier than we realised, and it's probably something we should all consider doing more of.
I wonder if, in times such as these, it's time to fix a divided society by bringing them together to build some new monuments?
We ran the Amazing Outdoor Isolation Race last week in Sweden, with a group of teenagers aged 13 - 18. It seemed like the perfect outdoor activity to get the teenagers busy outdoors after being in isolation for some time.
We chose a location with a range of natural features, such as a group of ruined farm houses, a natural obstacle course and a large lake with prepared fire pits and seating. The location was also quite isolated, as we didn't want to be running into crowds.
We gave our race a survivor style theme, focusing on important survival skills such as navigation, communication, finding food and lighting a fire.
Here is a brief rundown of how everything went, with pictures.
Overall, everyone involved had a great time, and they all stated that the range of activities encouraged them to enjoy the outdoors. Only one would have agreed to do a standard hike beforehand, so the positive feedback from the other three was a big win for getting the kids outdoors. It was a great way to spend some time with the teens without them complaining...
We're waiting for summer to try out the next one, which will be based on the water tasks. We've already thought about some potential routes and locations and a few friends have expressed interest in joining.
We definitely recommend that parents give this task a go, the setup would be perfect for a camping trip, short walk or even an outdoor birthday party.