One packet of information offered the choice, after reading the story Hatchet by Gary Paulsen, of listing five ways to start a fire without using a match in an effort to get away from the old fashioned book report.
My seventh graders struggled with that one for a while, then came in with farmer wisdom overnight...
BALE WET HAY.
One girl wrote
"What do you do with it?" I asked.
"I don't know. My care giver just said it would work."
The whole class heard that exchange, so it was back to the drawing board on that answer.
Wrote one far more technically minded boy
MAGNIFYING GLASS FOCUST ON A PILE OF DED GRASS.
Tomorrow, we'll worry about his spelling...
Her edited version now reads
HOLD A MAGNIFYING GLASS UP TO THE SUN AND FOCUS IT ON DRIED GRASS OR OTHER MATERIALS.
I think her entry
EXTREME HEAT IN PLACES COULD CAUSE A FIRE.
led to the boy coming up the hay entry...
She could NOT think of any such places, but I think that discussion got someone else in the ball park.
USE A LIGHTER.
TAKING LIGHTER FLUID AND POURING IT OVER GASOLINE. (The look on her face was priceless when I explained that without a spark, it would just evaporate.)
Edited the next day, she wrote
USE A LIGHTER TO LIGHT A CIGAR.
USE TWO SPECIAL FLINT STONES. (Well, almost...)
SCRAPING TWO STICKS TOGETHER.
TWO STICKS RUBBED TOGETHER CAUSES A FRICTION TO START A FIRE.
And, in the close, but no cigar department,
RUBBING TWO ROCKS TOGETHER.
"Any old rocks?" I ask.
May she never get stranded in the wilderness. She said, "yes."
I keep waiting for lightening strikes in timber to come up...