As the Indianapolis Public School system takes a fall break, LYN House gears up for a week of fall fun with kids in the neighborhood. Unlike other camps throughout the year, fall camp is all about celebrating the season with all sorts of traditions unique to LYN House. We had an average of 12 kids at camp this week, and needless to say, there was a lot of excitement surrounding our week. Since there were four days of camp this week, we chose one highlight from each day that seemed to be a group favorite.
1. Creating Fall Snacks
The first day of camp we followed the halloween season and our bellies, creating familiar childhood snacks. It was similar to our summer and winter cooking camps, where we take the day to work through recipes. By going through this process we were able to learn the differences between measuring cups, we were able to see what happens when we add too much flour, and experience the excitement of our treat actually turning out like it was supposed to turn out. This process is valuable in so many ways, and everyone benefits from our recipes. We took the time to make apple pie bites, dirt cups with gummy worms, chocolate covered pretzels, and insect cracker bites. The apple pie bites were by far the favorite snack made that day.
2. Carving Pumpkins
On the second day, Mr. Kyle joined us to help lead our pumpkin carving time. Being a skillful artist himself, he showed us how he is able to take a pumpkin and make it look like a polished piece of art. Through careful dedication and a lot of practice, they could also create something so unique. Shortly after Mr. Kyle's demonstration, each of us got to work with others to create a pumpkin of our own. Each of us worked with the other, imagining and creating our own art. At the end of the day, each pumpkin went to distinct people and businesses in the community. Our cards read, "Thank you for making a difference in the community." As you can imagine, the pumpkins were a hit in the community.
3. Reenacting a Halloween book
One of our favorite books is called The Little Old Woman Who Was Not Afraid of Anything. As Halloween thrives on fear, this book thrives on fun and engaging sound effects. Mr. Aaron helped us create homemade instruments and then assigned each part of the story a sound effect. The sound effects and the props brought the story to life with each telling. After this, we split into four different groups to reimagine the story with different characters. Each group practiced their version of the story, and presented their finished product in front of everyone. Although the original story is pretty good, everyone enjoyed the reimagined stories.
4. Making Hair Ties for a Friend
The final day of camp was all about creating crafts from scratch. There's nothing quite like creating something from almost nothing. What's more, is taking the time to make something out of nothing for someone else. During our time together, each student took the time to create a hair tie for someone like them. One of Ms. Heidi's friends, a girl their age, has recently undergone a surgery removing some of her hair due to cancer. Because of the surgery, she now wears her hair in a pony tail off to the side. Eager to support her, LYN House got creative and took the time to make her beautiful little hair ties. Sometimes the best medicine is being loved by people who don't even know you.
Fall camp continues to grow as a tradition in the neighborhood. Just as the seasons bring rhythms into our lives, LYN House has developed some rhythms and traditions as well. Most of us can relate to some of these traditions, and we benefit by celebrating them and passing them on.