Friday, August 19, 2011
Camp Plant-A-Seed: Helping Kids Grow!
During the last week of July, Pearson's Town Farm played host to Camp Plant-A-Seed, a grant funded day camp for ages 5 to 11 year old kids. The camp was directed by the amazing Amy Russell, who has been planning this camp since February (I helped here and there.) The camp was completely free for the 21 kids that tended, which meant that it gave campers the opportunity to attend a summer camp when they might not have otherwise have the chance to do to finances.
They were absolutely awesome kids! We had a great week full of adventures, learning, and fun!!
A camper is happy to be planting in the sun.
The game field were campers played games such as Capture the Flag, Don't Wake the Dragon, Red Light, Green Light and Grandma's Underwear.
This camper loved catching chickens, especially Midnight Joy.
Some of the boys walking back from a water break.
Campers playing games in the fields.
At the camp we emphasized learning about sustainable gardening, healthy living, and nature. Our crafts, activities, and lessons were centered on these.
The kids made solar ovens and cooked their afternoon snacks of hot dogs and smores in them. We were able to talk about solar energy as well as how the sun helps us all during this activity.
Of course, the kids added to our ever growing painted rock collection in our Kinder Garden.
Kids painting their rocks.
The rocks were added to the Kinder Garden.
Another activity we did was egg heads. Using egg shells as little flower pots, the campers drew faces on the eggs and planted grass seeds to use as hair.
Of course we did a lot of learning during camp as well. Lessons included parts of a plant, composting, permaculture, healthy eating habits, and more!
Amy teaching about parts of a plant.
Farmer Myke doing a composting demonstration.
Campers put their new knowledge to use by using compost to plant seeds.
The kids loved playing in the dirt!
And of course all campers go to participate in my favorite part of the farm -- Harvesting! Campers harvested beans, peas, and garlic during their week on the farm.
One of the best parts of the week was that we celebrated FOUR campers birthdays! Each of them brought in their favorite birthday treat to share with the rest of the camp.
Delicious cup cakes! We also had ice cream cake and ice cream bars.
And what would a week at Pearson's Town Farm be without the beloved animals? The kids were all over our fuzzy friends. Every morning and afternoon kids were introducing their parents and younger siblings to Mae, Pat, Bun Bun and everyone else. During the first day we let Pat the goat tag along with our camp. But that ended after he stomped all over everyone's lunches.
One of the campers caught a gater snake.
Mae was loving the extra attention.
Of course, Pat was a celebrity.
In addition to all the learning, games, crafts, and farming we did, we went swimming! Splashing around in beautiful lake Sebago made the entire camp week complete.
Campers showing off in the water.
I feel like I barely covered what we did at Camp Plant-A-Seed! Each day was action packed and full of fun! They kids were all excellent and an absolute joy to work with during that week. It was energizing and exciting. The kids loved it, and so did the parents. I heard over and over again about how this was many campers first time to camp and that parents were so glad we put this camp on so that their kids would get to go to summer camp.
While it was one of the most rewarding weeks at the farm, it was also exhausting. (Don't worry -- I was just resting my eyes for a moment. I didn't actually fall asleep on the kids.) Completely worth being tired though. Amy and I completely loved each of those kids and are hoping to do it again next year.
Posted by Kate