Friday, June 19, 2015

Manners & Etiquette

Table Manners & Etiquette:
What's the Big Deal?

Have you ever been to a restaurant and wondered which fork, spoon or napkin to use? Or, have you ever reached for your water glass only to discover that someone else is drinking from it?  For many, the practice of good table manners and etiquette, that were common place a generation or two ago, are sometimes tossed out in favor of convenience.

Our twenty-first century lifestyle is often fast paced and informal, and many of our young people simply have not been taught or have few opportunities to practice proper table etiquette. We know how valuable it is for our campers to learn and practice these skills so they will be equipped in all types of social settings.  
Javon, serving his class, the "Royal Lions" (2nd - 3rd grade) their morning snack.  On this day, we had apple slices.
This week, campers discussed common table manner, and the reasons why they are important.

  • No elbows on the table.  You might get food on your clothes.
  • Chew with your mouth closed.  You might drop food out of your mouth and give us something unsightly to see.
  • Don't reach across the table.  You might knock something over.
  • Don't stuff food in your mouth.  You could easily choke, plus you cannot talk with your mouth stuffed with food!

Campers also learned how to set the table. It is never too young to learn table etiquette, as our PreK-1st  graders (The Powerful Butterflies) quickly demonstrated their skills and memorized this simple poem:

Friday, June 12, 2015

Traditions: Strawberry Shortcake & Ice cream

Traditions:  Strawberry Shortcake & Ice cream

Freetown Village Summer Camp is full of traditions, and during the first week, strawberries play an important part.  Our field trip to Waterman's Farm has become a tradition over the past 10+ years, and there's nothing quite like the taste of fresh-picked strawberries!  For many of our campers, this is the first time they've been on a farm and made a direct connection with a food source.  

The first year we visited, the campers were horrified at the thought of picking food "off of the ground"!  The stunned adults asked, "Well, where do you think strawberries come from?" Their response?  "The store!" We knew right then that we had to make sure hands-on experiences with food were a part of our curriculum every summer.   

Back at camp, it's time to get to work.  Each class has a responsibility in making the sweet treat.  To get things started, our 4th - 5th graders have the responsibility of de-stemming and slicing the berries. The next morning, our 6th -8th graders make the shortcakes, and help the PreK-3rd graders to hand-crank the vanilla ice cream.

After lunch and recess, it all comes together in a delicious strawberry shortcake with a scoop of ice cream!