In the heat of this summer sunshine, we've been keeping cool and having fun. The mini Foosball game has been a smashing success. I’ve made fruit smoothies/milkshakes for several days in a row that the kids who remain for extended day (3-6pm) have enjoyed.
I like to use things that might otherwise go to waste, so I peeled the leftover bananas, apples, and clementines from snack, and froze them. I also got some frozen berries to mix in the blender with milk, vanilla ice cream, a cup of juice, and some chocolate syrup. Some preferred the Tutti-Fruiti smoothie, and others liked the banana milkshake better.
We’ve done a variety of projects involving palm trees. One we began by painting sunsets with watercolors, then we traced a palm tree on black construction paper. Depending on age and ability, people either cut out their palm tree or did it as a punching work, then glued it and the outline of it on the sunset once dry.
I also purchased small wooden palm trees for the kids to paint. The first day, we used finger paint. It was funny to watch how squeamish even the elementary age boys were at first about putting the paint on with their fingers. The next day, I had them add another layer using a different type of paint.
Since it’s been so hot out lately, I’ve led the younger kids who stay for nap/rest in some songs and dances. Their absolute favorite is “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt.” We also do “Bop Until You Drop” as well as the “Hokey Pokey.” Any adult who watches me do the “Hokey Pokey” might be a little concerned since I do it backwards, so the kids mirroring me are doing it the right way while I’m facing them.
My favorite quote from earlier this summer came out of the mouth of a five-year-old. As she helped a three-year-old friend roll up her sleeping bag after nap/rest, she informed her, “I’m not your scullery maid!”
I cracked up, wondering where she’d heard the term. Within the next couple of weeks, I watched the movie Trolls and solved that mystery.
Another amusing interaction occurred the other day after I’d read a three-year-old and his friends a book about The Cat in the Hat cooking. Several hours after naptime, he was doing a plastic pop-together bead work. He created a necklace, bracelet, and a headpiece using the brightly colored beads, then he put all of it on, informing everyone that it was his “cooking jewelry.”
I’d never seen such outlandish bling sported in the name of cooking. I asked him what he was going to make and he said eggs in ice cream. I told him I didn’t think I’d want to come to his restaurant if that’s what he’d serve.
“Am I making yucky food?” he asked me, giggling.
“It sounds like you are,” I said.
After that, he offered to make me an omelet. I’m not really a fan of eggs, but I’d choose an omelet over egg ice cream any day.
Another group of three preschoolers worked as a team to put together an alphabet puzzle. For each letter, they’d go through the alphabet again, then shout the letter that came next when they got to it. There was one animal for each letter, so after they’d finished, I asked them questions. Most of the names they knew already but not all of them. I also had them count how many animals had fur, how many birds there were, etc.
Summer camp afternoons have been going well. We’ve managed to learn, love, and laugh a lot.