Thursday, August 6, 2015

Drop-In Minecraft: Off-Line Fun

Craft: Paper Cut-Outs: Creeper, Steve

Craft: Pixel Art

Craft: Masks

Game: Bingo

Game: Nerf Targets

Game: Feed Creeper

Game: Slime Knock Down

This was a chaotic program!  We made it drop in after our experience with our last program.  Unfortunately this meant we had a TON of younger siblings attend with their older siblings.  Luckily we had plenty of supplies and volunteers to help out.  We added a few different things from our previous program (bingo and paper cut-outs) to add variety and make it "new".  The games went smoothly, although I forgot to get a picture of Feed Creeper.  The paper cut-outs were hard, so having extra adults on hand (parents) helped out.  We had to make more black and brown squares for the masks, but that was easily done with our die cut machine.  Definitely a popular program!

Minion Madness

It was difficult to locate unique, easy Minion crafts for older kids.  So, we started the program by showing some short videos from this DVD.  Luckily we have public performance rights for it, so we could show it.

Next the kids got to make a variety of crafts and play a few games.

Game: Tic Tac Toe
I took small white paper plates and made five yellow and five purple Minions using construction paper and large wiggle eyes.

Game: Minion Toss
Using yellow and purple cups from Dollar Tree, I added a large wiggle eye and permanent marker goggle lines.  Kids used rolled up socks to knock them down.

Craft: Minion Slime
Slime recipe:
Container 1: 1/2 cup white glue, 1/2 cup water (mix together)
Container 2: 1/2 cup liquid starch, yellow food coloring (mix together)
Add container 1 to container 2 and mix well.
Divide into baby food jars (which the kids then decorated to look like Minions.  Blue painters tape around the bottom for pants, black sharpies around top for goggles, large wiggle eye).

Craft: Finger Puppets
Paper and markers and tape.

Craft: Bookmarks/Puppets
Large popsicle sticks, markers, small wiggle eyes.

Craft: Paper Minions
We pre-cut the Minion body, eyes (black and white circles), goggles strips and grey goggle base.  Kids created the rest out of paper scraps.

Evaluation: This was a super hard program to pull together, although it went extremely well barring some major issues with the slime.  For some reason, some of the mixtures didn't jell together at all.  I don't know if it was the liquid starch or the glue that caused the issue.  We had enough liquid starch for the first program.  For the second we waited to see how many kids showed up and then game them a runnier slime and told them to experiment at home to see if they could "fix" it.  They really enjoyed the other crafts and the mini-movies.  This was a great way for us to start the program as it allowed for late comers to arrive before we got down to the activities.

I Survived! The Sinking of the Titanic

This program was done in April, 2015 near the 103rd anniversary of the sinking.  Around the room we had books displayed and paper clocks depicting the important moments in Titanic's voyage.

Once all the kids entered we gave them each a boarding pass similar to one passengers on the Titanic received.  Each boarding pass had a different person listed, along with the class they sailed in, and information about them.  We then went through and told them whether or not they survived the voyage.

Next we read aloud the first chapter of I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, 1912.

After we showed the kids some brief YouTube videos.

Video: Last Survivor Remembers Titanic Hitting Iceberg (Edith Rosenbaum)

We only played brief snippets of the the following, just enough to give the kids a taste of what Morse code sounds like, especially in "conversation."

Video: See and Hear Morse Code

Video: Morse Code Conversation

Science Experiment/Craft: Boat Making
Kids had a chance to make boats out of tinfoil and then test to see how many marbles their boat could hold before sinking.

Activity: Morse Code
We had some activity sheets kids could complete with various sayings in Morse code.  One was from the Magic Tree House: Tonight on the Titanic.

Science Experiment: Iceberg
We froze a balloon full of water to simulate an iceberg.  We placed it in a large bin of water so kids could see how much of the ice was below water and how easily it would be to hit one.  They could also feel the water temperature.
Remains of ice berg with tinfoil boat being tested.

Attendance: 27, 15
Evaluation: The kids really enjoyed this program.  The tinfoil boats, although messy and wet, always go over well.  The videos and iceberg demonstration really brought the sinking to life.  They liked learning whether or not their character survived the sinking, but putting the boarding passes together was time consuming.  We originally did this program in 2012 for the 100th anniversary of the sinking, so much of the legwork was done (clocks, boarding passes--although I had to make additional ones as we had higher attendance at this program).

Monday, August 3, 2015

Create with K'Nex

First half of program: Free build time
Since this was the first time we'd ever used K'Nex at the library we decided to give the kids some time to just play around with them and build whatever they wanted.  We had a mix of regular K'Nex and Kid K'Nex (which are bigger and geared toward younger ages.  The 1st graders really liked these.).

Chrysalis, caterpillar, butterfly

A sword

For the second half, they could do any of the following challenges.
  1. Build something that moves (vehicle, skateboard, airplane)

  1. Build a bridge that will hold two chapter books

Team work!
  1. Build a structure that is 2 feet tall.
Definitely OVER two feet tall!

Attendance: 19, 10
Evaluation: Each year we do at least one Lego program and we wanted to mix it up a little this year, especially as we were able to purchase some K'Nex sets to be used for STEM programs!  The kids loved the change.  This is an easy to set up program.  I liked having the challenges as it gave the kids a focus (not that they really needed it, but it added a playful element).  The bridge building was awesome and it was good to see them test and redo their bridges over and over until they got it right!  When I was researching for this program I came across a video of a young man who spent a year or so building a bridge that spanned his swimming pool and would hold his weight.  For the next program, I will have to locate it and show it as the kids were fascinated by the concept.

Science with My Peeps

This program was AWESOME!  Since we knew we couldn't demonstrate many of the cool Peep experiments, we did the next best thing and showed the kids YouTube videos of the experiments!
Video: Peep Experiments
This video is from a news channel and shows Peeps inside a vacuum chamber.

Video: Microwaving Peeps
Short video showing Peeps inside a microwave. 

Experiment: Dissolving Peeps
We placed 1/2 a Peep in nail polish remover, rubbing alcohol, vinegar and water with dish detergent.  We kept checking back throughout the program to see which Peep dissolved the most. The winner was the water with dish detergent.  We figured dish detergent has enzymes in it to break down food off plates.  It was amazing to see how little the Peeps were affected by the different liquids.  Gross, really.

Game: Peep Toss
The kids had to toss Peeps into a container using a spoon.

Game: Angry Peeps
The kids had to knock down Peeps off egg cartons using large marshmallows.  

Craft: Dress Your Peep
We gave the kids lots of ribbons, fabric scraps, felt, and sequins and the got to create and dress a Peep bunny.

Craft: Peep Printing
The kids used stale Peeps as stamps.

Game: Protect Your Peep
At the end of the program, the kids all got to work together to create a castle/structure out of cardboard and tape in which they'd place their Peep.  The Peep could not be taped down itself.  Then, others would try to knock their Peep down using large marshmallows and spoons.  This was a HUGE hit and could have been the entire program.

Attendance: 28, 10
Evaluation: Another fun program.  It was surprisingly difficult to locate age appropriate Peep activities and crafts.  The games were so-so.  The plastic eggs didn't work real well on the Styrofoam egg cartons and the Peeps had trouble balancing so it was pretty easy to knock them off!  The Peep printing garnered some GREAT results as did the Peep dressing.  I liked the creativity that went into both projects.  Thank goodness for our teen volunteers!  They helped a lot with the Peep dressing, especially using the hot glue guns to help make the stuff stick.