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Surviving & Thriving

Sierra Academy of Expeditionary Learning

A-Place-to-Call-Home worked with Sierra Academy of Expeditionary Learning as guest experts for the 10th grade, 2018 Spring semester expedition. The 10th grade expedition (semester long curriculum) was all about Surviving & Thriving, and what that means in the context of life in Nevada County, CA.

Students explored the various aspects of surviving and thriving through the lens of local homelessness, both in their classes at school, and through experiences with local experts. Their expedition culminated with the students writing narratives conveying a larger theme about what they discovered, along with art projects in a variety of media; fine art, music, dance, spoken word. All curriculum for the 10th grade at SAEL integrated the theme of Surviving & Thriving, and the students’ work conveyed this message.


As an expeditionary learning school, SAEL values community connection and meaningful student projects. The student narratives are posted here on the

A-Place-to-Call-Home website, and we are honored to collaborate with SAEL and look forward to you sharing the students' art and their messages about homelessness in our community. We believe these insights will apply to your own life and your own community, too.

They are Us. We are Them. We are One.

And we ALL need a place to call home.

Click on the name of the SAEL 10th Grade Student to read their Narrative and view their artwork.

Courtney Scallin - They Are Not Below Us -

"Everybody has a story, homeless or not. You have yours, I have mine, the woman down the street has hers. And none of them are the same. They may even have similarities that surprise you." - Courtney Scallin

Tommy Thompson - A Living Nightmare -

“No one even in their worst nightmares could possibly imagine the life people have to live due to homelessness.”  - Tommy Thompson

Rebecca Nick - Bottled Up -

"Then, one bottled up jar of emotions started leaking and seeping out into my brain. My thoughts started wandering down a spiraling rabbit hole I knew shouldn’t go down. But I couldn’t help it." - Rebecca Nick

Arlo Roos - 9 Lives -

"Although I managed to scrape together enough food and clothing so as to not starve or freeze, I went the next month with no place I could call home. Every night I would return to whatever street corner or alleyway I was sleeping in at the time and sob, reminiscing over Duffy and how hopeless I felt without him. Without anyone." - Arlo Roos

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