Students master navigation

| April 23, 2010 | 0 Comments

Story and Photo by
Staff Sgt. Corey Baltos
45th Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Nowadays, people have all sorts of tools to make sure they don’t get lost, but what happens if the cell phone dies or the signal is lost?   

While Soldiers are taught map reading, many civilians are not.  

Sgt. Abubakr Abdul-Zahir, 25th Transportation Company, helps students at Kahuku Intermediate and High School find different terrain features on their map as part of an orienteering course the Soldiers conducted, recently.To remedy this, the 25th Transportation Company, 45th Special Troops Battalion, went to Kahuku Intermediate and High School to teach students the basics of land navigation.

“We are teaching the kids orienteering, map reading and how to do a pace count,” said Sgt. 1st Class Carl Oldham, rear detachment first sergeant, 25th Trans. Co., and an instructor.  “Basically, it is the same class that Soldiers get during sergeant’s time training, but it is adjusted slightly so the kids can relate to it.”

The four-day class, conducted April 12-15, consisted of map reading, how to do a pace count and read a compass, a written test, and an orienteering course on school grounds.

“The course is like the ones the Soldiers do at Warrior Leader Course,” said Staff Sgt. Austin Durham, the primary instructor for the class. 

However, instead of plotting points and using a compass to reach a destination, the students had an aerial map of their campus with their point locations marked on their maps.

To find the points, they had to orientate their maps, then find nine points around the school in 20 minutes. 

Soldiers awarded prizes to the fastest teams to encourage the kids. Prizes consisted of backpacks, wallets, T-shirts and water bottles, supplied by the 130th Engineering Bn., and the 45th STB retention offices. 

The class was met with enthusiasm by students and Soldiers.  

“This class is good for both the students and the Soldiers,” said retired 1st Sgt. Dave Brandt, Kahuku Intermediate/High School Junior ROTC first sergeant. “We teach our cadets the basics of map reading, but this is more in depth. Since this class is being taught to all students, not just the cadets, more kids are getting this knowledge.”

“I liked this course, it was something different to do, and I learned how to read maps and about the different types of terrain features,” said Malo Matau, a senior at Kahuku. “I would like to have the Soldiers come back and teach us more classes.”

Category: Community, Community Relations

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