September 18, 2010
All summer at Education Works Morton Site we had a fabulous time doing the Philly Reads program. The theme this year was Growing A Peaceful Community and we did just that right at camp. Every day we read a story based on building the character of every individual camper while showing them how to independently build a better community at the same time. Touching on the vocabulary prior to doing a read aloud assisted campers with comprehending every story that much more. Reading stories such as City Green and following up with arts and crafts peeked their interest to no return. They created ideas to pick up the park, reuse classroom paper, and turn out the lights whenever we left our room. Our class did all of those things in order to support a green environment.
Meanwhile, we studied how plants grow and analyzed how they helped our communities as well. Giving a child a magnifying class will turn them into an instant scientist who is ready to dive into action head first. Their observations and discussions lead right back to how each one thought he or she could contribute to Growing a Peaceful Community. There was a trip to the Constitution Center that helped give the campers that sense of pride that We The People are what creates this country. It reiterated how neighborhoods work together which was reviewed several times at camp during civic lessons.
Campers enjoyed sharing the creative ideas on how to be better citizens and how to help others that were written down in journals. Keeping track of the campers journals was a wonderful way to see how they were stacking upon their prior knowledge throughout the summer. The kids were so enthusiastic about improving their community that they wanted to spread the news. After reading Wanda’s Roses they developed an idea to send out invitations to the entire camp. The kids wanted to have a Planting Party. I thought this was the perfect plan and we jumped right into creating invitations. We had the camp arrive at our class and listen to a story about a woman who planted trees all over her country through the help of others. Afterward, the campers were all given marigold seeds, a little cup, and soil to make their own plant. It was a great success and the kids excitedly cleaned up after our guests left while discussing how the whole Morton Site was affected by something we had implemented. Every story had a meaning and every story had a huge impact on which direction we should take our fantastic fun activities that related to the stories. The entire season was just proof that Philly Reads....and loves it
I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...
seeing the kids in the classroom become more excited about Reading. As a teacher I know it is very important for children to be enthusiastic about reading in order to enhance their individual educations!
Ways to make it better...
If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...
suggest it was provided at EVERY summer camp across Philadelphia...or even America!
What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...
the support from the program in order to implement it properly.
The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...
If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...
spread far and wide so that every child could benefit in Philadelphia during the summer.
Ways to make it better...
we were provided with more supplies for the stucents. There was a good amount of paper and coloring materials, but more paints and things for enhancement in the crafts would make it evenbetter!
In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...
working around the schedules of the summer camps. They should try to be more flexible so that we could implement it without any issues because we impact their campers immensely.
One thing I'd also say is that...
I can't wait to do it again next summer!
How frequently have you been involved with the organization?
About once a year
When was your last experience with this nonprofit?
Former staff & I was a teacher who provided a summer camp with the program for 4 hours a day.