Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Summer Camp Week 1 - Camping

This past week we began our first week of at home summer camp.  Our theme was "Camping in our own Backyard" and we fit in lots of fun crafts and activities.  Here is a round up of all the fun!

Summer Reading at the Library
We stopped by our local library branch to pick up our summer reading packets.  We picked out LOTS of good books and started reading right away.  A few of our favorite camping stories we read were Just Me and My Dad by Mercer Mayer, S is for Smores by Helen James, Amelia Bedelia Goes Camping by Peggy Parish, Stella and Roy Go Camping by Ashley Wolff and The Berenstain Bears Go to Camp by Stan & Jan Berenstain.  So far, my son has read 11 books and my daughter has read 8!

Summer Memory Box
I found these CD boxes at my local craft store on clearance for only .50 each!  The kids and I went on a nature walk in our yard to find some items to use to decorate their boxes.  The kids can add momentos and keepsakes to their memory boxes to help remember all the fun they had during their summer vacation.

Bead Bookmark
This bead bookmark will help the kids keep track of all the books they've read this summer.  For every book they read, they get to add a bead to the bookmark.

Camp Sign
Using a piece of cardboard for the sign, the kids decorated their signs with nature items and used beans to spell out their initials.  We punched holes in the top and added some twine to hang the signs.

Firefly Jars
Using a small gravy jar, we poked holes in the lid with a screwdriver to make a firefly jar.  The kids painted pictures on their jars to look like the outdoors with fireflies all around.

Friendship Bracelets
We made friendship bracelets with beads as well as braided ones.

Paint Your Own  Pottery
We visited a local paint your own pottery place to have the kids paint a piece.

Summer Activities Journal
To get our writing juices flowing we started off with this simple journal prompt.  The kids wrote about the activities they were hoping to do this summer.  (Borrowed from my own copy of 50 Month by Month Draw & Write Prompts by Scholastic.)

Roasting Marshmallows
We enjoyed roasting marshmallows by our firepit.

Camping Checklist
We used this camping checklist to help us prepare for our first camping adventure in the backyard.  (Borrowed from my own copy of Kindergarten Homework by CTP.)

Great American Backyard Campout
We participated in the Great American Backyard Campout, and camped out in our backyard.  We've never been camping before and this was a good first try for us.  Everyone did well and is looking forward to our next camping adventure.

This first week we were able to fit in almost all of the activities I had planned.  Most importantly the kids had a blast!  I saved my favorite part for the end.  The kids got to sew a homemade patch onto a bandana.  The bandana will serve as another keepsake of all the fun we had and all the neat things we learned over the summer.  We just did this the other day so I still need to take a pic, but will come back soon to share how they look.

Coming up...Week 2 - America the Beautiful!

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