Back to School

A friend recently told me that despite being out of school for many years, she still gets excited every Fall. The most wonderful time for many parents, we can all recall the simultaneous dread and excitement of going back to school. A common activity in the first few weeks back is to report on “what you did this summer”. We at Explore It! thought it fitting to ask our instructors that same question. Here’s what they said:


Maggie Koabel

This summer I worked at Sasamat Outdoor Centre in Belcarra British Columbia, about an hour outside Vancouver. Here I created and ran outdoor programming for the centre’s Sasamite Nature Club, a day camp for children aged four and five. The program’s goals were two-fold: First, to introduce little ones to the experience and joys of summer camp through activities such as campfire, hikes, canoe trips, gardening, swimming, crayfishing and arts and crafts. Second, to prepare them for kindergarten, which many of them are attending for the first time this fall. The program was fun, challenging, rewarding and freeing! I got to chase around small children, be silly and make them laugh! 

Kymberley Feltham

This summer I went to South Africa! I attended a two-week performance festival where I saw so much dance and theatre, There was also tons of music and art there as well. The rest of the time I was working on my PhD on South African Dance.


Randy and Liz


After a fantastic (albeit long and tiring) year, Randy and I were totally ready to hang up our “Director” hats and enjoy summer as proud entrepreneurs. We work on the school calendar, so the summer break should be filled with long lazy afternoons sitting by a pool somewhere right? Not. So. Much. Come the end of June I spent almost a month adventuring though what I like to call “Supply Mountain” (putting away all the supplies from the many programs that ran in the spring term) while Randy tackled the “Books”… which involved a lot of time spent in front of his computer with copious amounts of coffee! Not that we’re complaining – we got to tackle all our work with our trusty cats by our sides (supervising) and we were the rulers of our own schedules… which equaled healthy doses of sleeping in.

The summer wasn’t all work and no play though – we were able to spend many hours gardening in our yard and we enjoyed more than a few long days relaxing on the dock at the cottage. While we’re sad the summer has come to a close, we look forward to the coming year – we’ve got a fantastic team of instructors, strong relationships with our schools and some really fun new programs lined up. 2013/14 is gonna be great – bring it on!

Jasmine Bowen

Last summer was very busy for me! I traveled to Quebec City, Ottawa, Edmonton, Sask., and Newfoundland, all within the space of two months, enjoying some time off in some places while working in others. I also worked a lot, performing for U of T as a medical actor, to help simulate real patient scenarios for student doctors. I filmed 3 short films, and 2 commercials that will air early next year. I also started rehearsals for my role in A Streetcar Named Desire, as well as resigned my contract to perform at Wonderland’s “Halloween Haunt” this fall.

A busy summer, but a great one!

Thea Fitz-James

What a wild summer it has been. I taught theatre and writing at Centauri Summer Arts camp by day, and finished up my Master’s in Theatre Studies by night. I saw friends get married, teens find themselves on stage through scenes from The Breakfast Club and spoken word poetry, and wrote about Toronto theatre.

It never ceases to amaze me what working with children and theatre can teach you.


Tiffany Maxwell-Graovac

My summer would probably seem boring to most people, but as an exceptionally boring person, I was enthralled! I’ve spent time recently on several very rewarding editing projects, working for both experienced and emerging authors who I am very excited for. Helping new writers develop and learn is an amazing process. On a more personal front, I finally, after several back-breaking years of working from my couch, finally obtained a desk and built and decorated my own little corner office, achieving my life-long dream of working in the lair of the Phantom of the Opera. The pewter dragon goblets are great for storing easy-access puppy treats!

Hilary Krull

Hilary Krull - 'In Connection' in Dubai

This summer I had the privilege of performing overseas, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates! I was one of eight dancers cast in a 30-minute contemporary dance show – “In Connection” – that performed as part of the Dubai Summer Surprises Festival for five weeks, at a number of venues throughout the city. What a beautiful and exciting experience!!

As well, I spent a few days in Saskatchewan where I performed at Regina’s Queen City Exhibition. I sang and danced (and rapped!) the role of Frankie the Funky Fairy in the musical stage production of “Shrek: Stompin’ in the Swamp”.

It was a very theatrical summer!

Georgia Kirkos

Upon reconnecting with some friends from abroad, the opportunity to propose a photography teaching session for the Internationales Kammermusikfestival in Nürnberg fell into my lap; I’m looking forward to working with musical artists while in Germany next April. In the meantime created a photo blog, to support my growing business, using good old Word Press that will launch in the next month.

Keeping active by shooting creatives each week for my photography Facebook page.