We’re getting close to the end of our summer at Blue Rock, and the weeks have flown by. This week was a lot of fun. The kids loved the soccer intensive offered as an optional activity all week. They honed their skills and had fun playing with their friends and the coaches. We also worked on projects in art, nature, and woodworking, played in the pool, and got musical for our upcoming play on July 29. Here’s a sneak peek from one of our rehearsals:
And here’s a look at what else we’ve been up to this week.
Art: Weaving is Magic
In art this week we focused on weaving and sewing. Our littlest campers had fun doing process-art painting with things like toy trucks, balloons, and styrofoam. After they dried, we wove the strips of paper together to make place mats. The rest of the campers worked on weaving with different materials, making baskets and coasters. Wendy led machine sewing this week, helping campers design pillows and make a small quilts. The kids continued working on their camp memory books- and comic books too! We have published a few series now. Eileen fired and glazed pottery the kids created, and the beautiful pieces will be ready for pick-up next week on Wednesday. Please bring a box to safely transport your campers’ pottery home.
Science and Nature: Spray it, Don’t Pay it!
This week in Science and Nature we continued making our own concoctions. We whipped up an applesauce and cinnamon air freshener — who knew commercial air fresheners contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals? We also made our own gentle but effective garden spray. We started with a spray bottle of water and added a teaspoon of castile soap, a few drops of vegetable oil, and a teaspoon of powdered garlic. (For more on garden sprays you’ll have to come to our play and learn all about “Indiscriminate Spray!”) The children had a lot of fun spraying the plants in our garden, and we hope your families can use the spray bottles at home, too. You can make an excellent all-purpose house cleaner by filling the spray bottle half with vinegar and half with water. It works well and the vinegar smell dissipates in a few minutes. And a mixture of half rubbing alcohol and half water makes a top-notch glass cleaner. Mary Esther finds that kids are great cleaners when they’ve mixed up the concoction and have a spray bottle in hand!
Woodworking: Bows and Boats
We’ve been having a great time in woodworking. Some kids made boats, complete with little sails they decorated themselves. Some made little twig creatures from pine cones and sticks. And our older campers continued to work on their own self-directed projects, with help from their counselors as needed. This week, a few kids used the hand drill to make holes in large, curved branches. When they added string and decoration, they had beautiful rustic bows. Feathers found in the forest (and some from our craft supplies) made lovely arrows. Steve came in one day to help the kids made funny face clip boards.
Excursion: Frog and Tadpole Time
For our final excursion this summer, we headed to a new area within Harriman State Park. Earlier in the summer, our CITs Stephen and Marcus worked at a nature center within the park, and they clued us in to an awesome spot for catching critters. Spring Lake is loaded with frogs and tadpoles, and the kids had a great time catching them with nets and observing them in our buckets and jars. We caught tiny pickerel frogs and big green frogs. The smaller tadpoles were likely pickerel and green, and we also caught big fat bullfrog tadpoles. Dragon flies flitted overhead and landed on water lilies in the still pond. Though the kids were reluctant to leave “frog heaven,” we headed from there to lunch and swimming at Lake Welch Beach. It was a great time, and we’re looking forward to more nature exploration and fun next summer.