August 11th, 2016

Can Do SchoolIt’s time to go shopping with your parents and grandparents  for new shoes, and clothes, and backpacks and school supplies.

The “Can Do” Kids were all sitting around the table in the community center recreation room talking about going back to school.

Kathy shared that she had gone to the doctor for a check up before going back to school. Willie asked, “Did you get a needle? Did it hurt? All the “Can Dos” looked at Kathy waiting for her to answer. “My doctor is really good at giving shots. Before I knew it, the needle was in and out and I hardly felt it,” said Kathy.

Bobby shared about his trip to the dentist. Eulyn looked scared and said, “I have to go to the dentist before school starts. What did he do to you? Bobby answered, “He checked out my teeth for cavities and then cleaned and polished them.”

The “Can Dos” were quiet for a few seconds then Eulyn asked,” Did it hurt? Did you have any cavities? Bobby looked all sorts of proud and answered, ” Nope, no cavities and it didn’t hurt a bit to get my teeth cleaned.”

Annie noticed that Hector, who always has something to say, hadn’t said anything at all.  Annie said,” Hector, you’re very quiet and you look nervous. Is something wrong?”

“Yeah, there’s something wrong alright. I’m in trouble already and school hasn’t even started,” said Hector. The “Can Dos” just stared at him. Then Annie said, “What kind of trouble could you be in before school even starts?”

Hector answered, “I only read one of the books on the summer reading list for school. I didn’t attend the weekly summer book club at day camp to discuss the books on the reading list. I don’t know what any of the other books are about.”

“Uh,oh,” said Orrie.” You are going to be in trouble when Miss Pat finds out you didn’t do your book assignment before school.” The other “Can Dos” nodded.

Hector thought for a moment and said, “Well I won’t get in trouble if you all tell me what each book was about.” The other “Can Dos” shook their heads no and Jay said,”Why should we help you? We did the work and you didn’t. Plus that would be cheating.”

Hector answered, “Ah, come on guys. I thought you were my friends. If you don’t help me out, I will have to stay in all next week and just read to get ready for school!”

The “Can Dos all answered at once, “We are your friends. Friend don’t help friends cheat. Do what we all did…read the books and be ready for school!”

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July 31st, 2016

butterfly

 A naturalist, named John, visited the Community Center. He took the campers on a walk in the nature preserve just behind the Center. As they walked, John pointed out types of plants, birds and bugs. The boys were more interested in the bugs; the girls wanted to know about the beautiful flowers. Eulyn spotted something crawling on a leaf. John put it on his finger and asked the “Can Dos” what it was. Hector called out, “An ugly looking thing.” Everyone giggled.

John asked again. Jay said, “It’s a caterpillar and it won’t always be ugly. One day soon it will turn into a beautiful butterfly. Some of the “Can Dos” nodded in agreement, others looked puzzled. John said, ‘That’s right. Soon this crawly thing will be a beautiful butterfly.” Kathy spoke up. Please tell us how that happens.”

John had them sit down on low rocks and began to share what he knew about how a caterpillar changes into a butterfly.“A butterfly begins as caterpillar. It takes four steps to become a butterfly: egg, caterpillar, pupa, and adult. We call this process metamorphosis. This word comes from the Latin words …”changing shape.”

Most butterflies lay their eggs on plants. When the egg hatches, a small caterpillar crawls out and eats the eggshell, and then it begins eating the plant. Caterpillars just munch all day. A caterpillar’s insides grow, but not its outside—when it gets too big for its skin, the covering splits and is shed. A new exoskeleton lies underneath. A caterpillar sheds its skin 5 times, and then it becomes a pupa. The last time the caterpillar sheds, a hard casing called a chrysalis forms around its body. Inside this hard casing, lots of things are happening. The pupa is growing six legs, a proboscis, antennae, and wings.

After 10 to 15 days, the chrysalis breaks open and a butterfly emerges. At first its wings are wet and crinkled, but after about an hour, they are straight, dry, and strong enough for the butterfly to flutter away. The “Can Dos” all looked amazed. Hands went up, and the questions started.

Willie wanted to know what parts of the world you would find caterpillars. According to John, all continents except Antarctica.

Nellie wanted to know what kind of places did they make their homes. John’s answer, “They can be found in everything from rain forests to places like here.”

Arthur Jay wanted to know what caterpillars and butterflies eat. “Caterpillars eat leaves; butterflies sip nectar, sap, and juices from fruit,” answered John.

“How big are they,” asked Annie. “From less than 1 inch to about 11 inches across, depending on the species,” said John.

“I’d like to tell you more about the butterfly,” said John, “But it is time to get back to the camp. If you want to learn more about the butterfly, there is a great website you can go to. I will show you it when we get back to camp.

butterflyThis is the website. Visit it when you can and learn more about the butterfly.

www.butterfliesandmoths.org

 

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July 21st, 2016

manners“Uh Oh,”said Bobby,”Did you see what Hector just did?” Willie shook his head no. Bobby said, “He closed the door in nurse Diane’s face! What happened to his manners?”

As The “Can Dos” were lining up for lunch, in the community center lunch room, Eulyn pushed in front of Nellie on line. “Hey,” said Nellie, “No cutting in line.”

Kathy stuck her finger in her sister’s pudding hoping that Annie wouldn’t want to eat it, and then she could have it.

Maria didn’t bother to empty her tray. She left it on the mannerstable for the lunch room staff to clean up after her. What happened to her manners?

Yundi met Miss Sue in the hallway, and  he didn’t answer her when she said good morning to him.

Miss Hattie gave Jay a pencil and paper when he forgot to bring any. He just took them, and didn’t even bother to say thank you.

Later that day, when the camp staff met to talk about the day, and the “Can Dos” behavior, they decided it was time to have a session on manners.

What should Hector have done?_______________________________

What would have been the right thing for Eulyn to do?________________

Why was it wrong for Kathy to stick her finger in Annie’s pudding?”__________________________________________________

What should Maria have done with her tray?_______________________

When someone say hello to you what do you do?_________________

When someone gives you something, what do you say? Why do you say it?________________________________________________

Remember boys and girls, you may be on vacation, but good manners never go on vacation!

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July 13th, 2016

Willie was lying on his bed reading the latest book he borrowed from the library when he heard his grandfather’s booming voice coming from the foot of the stairs. “Willie, come down here. Meet me in the kitchen.”

Willie scooted off the bed and made his way to the stairs. All the while he kept thinking what did I do? What did  I do? He couldn’t think of anything he had forgotten to do, or that he had done, for Grandpa Dooley to use his stern voice. Grandpa was definitely using  his, “Willie, you are in trouble voice.”

When Willie walked into the kitchen, he saw his dog, who was not quite a year old, lying in the corner looking very sad and sick. Not far from where he was lying was a mess. The dog had gotten sick to his stomach…big time.

“Willie, what did I tell you about not giving the dog any table food or human snacks?” Grandpa Dooley didn’t give Willie a chance to answer. He just continued to talk. “Dogs eat dog food. We agreed to that when I agreed you could have a dog.”

Willie’s lower lip began to tremble, but he answered firmly, “I didn’t feed him any people food.”  Grandpa Dooley answered, “Well there are raisins and bits of chocolate in his mess, so someone fed them to him or he picked them up on the street when you were walking him.”

Willie was about to say that didn’t happen when he remembered that he had stopped to talk to some friends when he was walking the dog. When he shared that information with his grandpa, his grandpa said,”Weren’t you watching him while you were talking?” Willie had to admit there were a few minutes when he was looking at a new game on one of his friend’s cell phone and wasn’t paying attention to what the dog was doing.

Grandpa asked,”Were any of the boys eating snacks?” Willie thought for a moment, and answered, “One of the guys was eating chocolate covered raisins.”

“Okay Willie, said his grandpa, “Help me clean up this mess and then let’s get the dog to the vet’s to have him checked out.” Willie gulped and said, “Do I have to help clean up the mess?” Grandpa Dooley looked at him and said.” What do you think,Willie?” Willie nodded and said. “I’ll get the mop.”

Later, the veterinarian sat Willie down and shared about some of the people foods that dogs cannot digest properly and should not be given to eat.  He told Willie that he needed to tell his friends not to feed the dog. He also said that, when walking the dog, his job was to watch the dog and keep him from eating things he found on the street because that is another way his dog could get sick.

Here is the picture the veterinarian gave Willie to remind him of foods that all dogs should not eat.

Willie

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July 7th, 2016

nellieGrandpa John is busy sweeping the sidewalk, in front of his store, when he sees Nellie coming down the street. He can see that Nellie is crying. She looks so sad!

When Nellie gets to where Grandpa John is sweeping, he asks softly, “Why Nellie, what’s wrong? Can I help in any way?”

Nellie stops in front of Grandpa John. She sniffles, wipes away her tears and says, “I’m so sad. My best friend, Minnie, is moving away today. She and her family are moving across the country because Minnie’s dad got a new job.” Then Nellie starts crying all over again.

Grandpa John says, “Nellie, let’s grab a bottle of juice and sit down and talk about this.”

They go into the store, and Grandpa John grabs two bottles of all-natural fruit juice. He opens them, and he gives one to Nellie. They sit down on two wicker chairs in the corner of the store, and Nellie begins to talk about Minne’s leaving.

“Minnie is my best friend. We play together every day, after school, and on weekends. What will I do without her? When will I see her again? Who will I tell all my important stuff to?” A big tear rolls down Nellie’s cheek and she starts sniffling again.

“Now just wait a minute, Nellie,” says Grandpa John. “This isn’t the end of your friendship with Minnie. If you have a computer, and I know you do, and if you have a webcam (a camera with your computer), you can see and talk to Minnie every day, for free.”

Nellie stops sniffling and says, “Do I need a special software program to do that? Does it cost money?”

Grandpa John smiles and answers, “You need Skype, which you can download for free.”

“Oh great,” answers Nellie. “Minnie’s dad works for a computer company, so no problem for her to get and use Skype, but me, who helps me?”

Grandpa John answers,”Well, it just so happens that my grandson, Orrie, uses Skype all the time. I’ll ask him to come over to your house tomorrow, and help you install and use Skype. ”

With that, Nellie gets up, thanks Grandpa John, and starts out the door. Grandpa John calls after her, “Where are you going?”

Nellie calls back, as she runs to catch Minnie before she leaves, “I’m going to make a Skype date with Minnie!”

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