Hi there fellow readers. Alas it is time for my sister and I to resign our post of blogging for the Hampshire Youth Connect. Its been an awesome opportunity for us and has given us experiences that we can take where ever we go. For me, that will be Hampshire College! I cant wait to start off the year and take so many cool classes. Working on campus for the summer has definitely given me a taste of college life, as well as help me make numerous valuable friends and connections between alumni, current students, and staff alike! Have a good year!
Last week, campers had a blast during choice activity time. Two particular popular choices were the pancake making and the garden fairy house construction, both of which were lead by Hope Gardenier. In the pancake activity, campers had the opportunity to grind wheat into flour and mix pancake batter. A series of stations were set up that had campers rotating in groups to the different activities. At the end, pancakes were devoured as the story “Pancakes Pancakes” by Eric Carl was read aloud. The fairy house activity had campers of all ages building their own mini fairy houses from items found and or made from nature, such as bark, twine, pine cones, flowers, etc. The Smith students helped kids to fulfill their visions of the perfect “fairy” abode.
Here at Farm and Garden Camp, fridays are Feast Days! Campers of all ages come together to make delicious food that we all enjoy at lunch time. Some of this yummy food includes pizza, pesto, salsa, pickles and blackberry cobbler. Usually, the Sprouts and Planters make the pizza dough, while the Herders and Harvesters actually put the pizza together, by making the sauce, cutting up vegetables and shredding cheese. But the Harvesters have a very special job; keeping the cob oven running and warm enough to cook the pizza. The CITs have an even more special job, which is highly important! They make sure that the campers are safe around the cob oven and while cooking. They are there throughout the whole feast prep process to make sure everything runs smoothly and without any hiccups. Having the CITs around makes for a fun and safe time for the campers!
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, the CITs meet with Rachel to prep for the theater game activities with the campers and to plan for their choice activities. This year, CITs will be in pairs developing the aspects of said activities. Topics of discussion range from baking, to sewing, and even tie dye. Rachel helps by advising the group on how to be aware, engaging, and interactive as we practice our various skills; honing them for our experience with the campers.
Every thursday Farm and Garden Camp holds a farm stand before the camper’s parents arrive to take their children home. Campers can choose to sign up for this Farmers Market set up as a choice activity. You might ask, where do they get all of this produce; enough to sell? Well, the campers harvest the vegetables from the large fields where Hampshire’s farmers work and from the garden that TFEC and the campers keep growing and healthy throughout their week at camp. The campers also harvest beautiful flowers to make into bouquets and help sell Hampshire’s Maple Syrup. A lot of work goes into this process, which is mostly done by the Harvesters but with the help of younger campers, and they have a great time setting up, making signs and selling their produce. The CITs are there to help aid in this process, make sure that the campers get everything done in a timely manner, learn about how Farmer stands work and have a fun time!
During the CITs weeks at camp, they have worked with Rachel. She is a member of Child Drama and Community Program and a current student at Hampshire College. Through this program, she has been able to further her studies in child drama and theater. In addition, by working with the CITs she has had the opportunity to gain some real life experience leading fun theater games and projects, while working with younger people! She is currently aiding the CITs in putting together their CIT final project, where they will lead engaging farm and garden related choice activities for the campers. Also, the CITs have been introduced to a new found favorite game, called “ZIP ZAP ZOP,” which they can not wait to teach! Rachel has brought a lot of great ideas and guidance to the CIT program.