Posts Tagged ‘community center’

Volunteering: A Time to Help

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

volunteeringGrandma Sue visited the “Can Do”Kids in their classroom the other day. Miss Pat invited her to come and speak about volunteering.

“Good Morning, boys and girls,” said Grandma Sue, “Most of you know me as Miss Sue, the Director of the “Can Do” Community Center. I am here today to ask you to think about volunteering with senior citizens in our neighborhood.”

Before she could continue speaking, Eulyn raised her hand. Miss Sue called on her and Eulyn said, “What’s volunteering?” Miss Sue could see by the looks on some of the other children’s faces that she needed to explain volunteering. Eulyn was not the only one who wasn’t sure what volunteering was all about.

“Volunteering is when you offer to do something for someone that needs help. You don’t have to do it, you choose to help because you want to help. You don’t get paid to help. You help during your free time,” said Miss Sue.

Willie raised his hand and said,”My grandma is a senior citizen and I help her all the time. Does that count?” Miss Sue smiled, ” It is nice that you help your grandma, and I am sure she appreciates it, but I am talking about helping those seniors who are not your relatives, you may or may not know them. “

Anne raised her hand next,”I don’t think my mom will let me go to a stranger’s house to help them out.” Miss Sue nodded, “Yes, we need to be safe. That is why we have come up with ways for children to be safe while volunteering.

Here are some of the volunteering activities you can do as a group, with a staff person from the Center as your group leader or at the Center with senior citizens:

  • You can be part of a group that visits seniors at the local senior residence. You can do friendly visiting. Seniors get lonely and would love a visit from a young person for an hour or so once a month.
  • There are seniors who want to learn the computer, but don’t have family to teach them and can’t afford to take lessons. If you can spare 45 minutes, once a week, you can sit with at senior at one of the Center computers and teach him or her computer basics, maybe even how to email and use the Internet.
  • You can join a yard work group, led by Mr. Dooley. Once a month you will go as a group to a senior’s house to help with yard work chores during the spring and fall.

If you think you are interesting in volunteering, please see me after class and I will tell you more about volunteer opportunities with seniors.” With that, Miss Sue thanked the children for paying attention and thanked Miss Pat for allowing her to speak with the class. Then she went outside the class to sit at a desk that had a big sign on it that read, “Sign up here for volunteering at the Community Center.”

Miss Pat gave the children some time to discuss the idea of volunteering. After class some of the “Can Dos” signed up for volunteering. Anne and Kathy, Nellie and Maria, Jay and Yundi signed up for friendly visiting at the senior residence.

Orrie signed up to teach seniors how to use computers and so did Arthur J. Hector, Willie, Eulyn and Bobby signed up to be on Mr. Dooley’s team and do yard work.

After their first volunteering session, the “Can Dos”who participated, gave a report to the class. It seems that each of the volunteers felt good about volunteering. The seniors really appreciated having them and the “Can Dos” got to see just how much they could help people by volunteering.

Goodbye Camp Until Next Year

Friday, August 15th, 2014

campThe last day of camp was sunny and warm, not hot, just right. It was a perfect day for end-of-camp events.

There were sack races and three-legged races the first thing in the morning. Then it was time to enjoy the outdoor pool, one last time, as campers.

The camp lunch was a picnic on the lawn behind the recreation center. The picnic was a present from Grandpa John’s market of sandwiches, bottles of  juice and low-fat ice-cream sandwiches.

After lunch, all the campers assembled in the recreation center auditorium for a play and closing ceremonies for the camp.

Some of the “Can Do” Kids put on a play about the fun things at camp. Then Miss Sue, the Director, got up and spoke about all the good things that were accomplished at camp.

Miss Sue gave out certificates to The “Can Do” Chefs Club for the great smoothies they made for the campers. All the kids in Miss Hattie’s crafts class got a certificate for making the best decoration for the new path …footprint stones!

Then it was time for the closing circle. The “Can Dos” sang the camp song. The girls hugged, the boys shook hands. Then it was over. No more camp until next year. Kind of a sad moment, but filled with the promise of all being together next year.

There was still a week before school started after camp ended. There was still time to play with friends, that is if the moms didn’t have lots of things scheduled for them to do before school started.

Then it’s off to school to learn new things and make new friends!

Bathroom Behavior Show and Tell

Sunday, August 3rd, 2014

Miss Sue, director of the “Can Do” Recreation Center and the summer camp, called an assembly shortly after the “Can Do” kids arrived for camp. She didn’t look pleased as she stood on the stage, in front of the microphone stand. “It seems that many of you are not practicing good bathroom behaviors.

I need to speak with you about complaints I am receiving from the janitors responsible for keeping our center a clean and healthy place where all of you can enjoy summer camp.

How do you feel when you have to use the bathroom and their is lots of toilet paper on the floor, or the toilet seat is wet and so is the floor? Doesn’t make you mad when the kid using the toilet before you didn’t flush? And what about the kids who leave a dirty mess in the sink and on the floor around the sink, and then throw the paper towels they used on the floor?

Some of the “Can Dos” looked uncomfortable, but no one said anything.

bathroom“Let’s remember,” said Miss Sue, “public bathrooms, such as what we have at the camp, are used by many children every day. Each of you are responsible for keeping the bathrooms clean and tidy.”

Starting tomorrow, Nurse Diane, will hold bathroom behavior show and tell sessions. Each of you will be given a chance to see Nurse Diane demonstrate how you are to use the bathroom properly, including  flush a toilet, washing your hands with soap, dry your hands, and disposing of the paper towels correctly.”

After Miss Sue’s announcement, most of the “Can Dos” were quiet. Some were going over how that behave in the bathroom. Willie and Hector, and Bobby wanted to know who snitched on them about the water fight they had in the bathroom during recess yesterday. They did leave a watery mess. Someone coming in after the water fight could have slipped and fell. They all agreed that maybe the water fight wasn’t such a good idea after all.

The next day, Nurse Diane began calling five “Can Dos” at a time, and bringing them into a room set up just for the bathroom behavior show and tell  sessions. It had an operational sink and a dry toilet. Helping her demonstrate, and assisting the kids in practicing were two camp counselors, Molly and Tommy that the “Can Dos” really like and want to impress with their good bathroom behavior and manners.

Nurse Diane began each session by explaining to the “Can Dos” that she would speak about bathroom behaviors and Molly or Tommy would show proper bathroom behaviors and manners. The bathroom show and tell went like this:

  1. Check the bathroom floor, when you enter the bathroom, to make sure you know if and where there is water on the floor, so you don’t slip and fall.
  2. Find an empty toilet stall. Make sure it is clean: no water on the seat or wet toilet paper. If it isn’t find another stall that is clean with a dry seat. If there are none, take a few pieces of toilet paper and wipe the seat before you sit down Throw the toilet paper into the toilet. Using the non-working toilet, Tommy demonstrated lifting the seat. Molly demonstrated wiping the seat
  3. If you are a boy, raise the toilet seat before using the toilet. Lower the seat when you are through. Tommy demonstrated lowering the seat and the lid.
  4. When you are ready to flush, take 2 squares of toilet paper and use it to handle the flush, then throw the paper in the toilet bowl. Molly showed how to flush the toilet using toilet paper
  5. As you are leaving the toilet stall, take another 2 squares of toilet paper and use it when unlocking the stall.

The “Can Dos” were then invited to join Molly and Tommy at the sink to practice washing their hands as Nurse Diane talked them through proper hand washing:

  1. Turn on the water, make sure it is warm, rinse your hands, lather up your hands with soap, be sure to wash between your fingers and all over your hands.
  2. Continue to wash your hands until you have completed singing the Happy Birthday song twice.
  3. Rinse your hands until all the soap is gone and your hands feel clean.
  4. Use two paper towels to dry your hands. Wipe off the rim of the sink, if you have gotten water all over it.
  5. If the bathroom has a door with a knob, save one of the towels to open the door, then throw it out in the first waste paper basket you see after you leave the bathroom. If the bathroom doesn’t have a nob on the door, throw your paper towels in the waste basket before leaving the bathroom.

“Well done “said Nurse Diane. “Thank you Tommy and Molly for your assistance.

Remember “Can Dos” the bathroom is not a place to play. When you are finished using the bathroom, tell your friend you will meet him or her outside. Leave, and don’t take up space for those coming in after you that need to use the bathroom.”

The Butterfly…From a Crawly Creature to a Flying Beauty

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

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.

butterfly

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

www.butterfliesandmoths.org

 

Just for Fun…Mazes

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Another rainy day at summer camp. The “Can Dos” were getting bored with indoor games and activities. Miss Sue, the camp director,  thought…time for a contest!

Miss Sue distributed mazes to each of the kids at camp, announcing that the first one to finish the mazes correctly would win a prize…free admission to the Friday night movie, popcorn and a soft drink. You could have heard a pibn drop as the “Can Dos” worked hard at solving the mazes.

Here are two of the mazes…let’s see how you do.

mazes

mazws