We’ve been busy little bees in our home participating in LeapFrog Summer Camp! It’s been fun learning about our community and the people, places, and things that make our town such an interesting place to live.
Week 1 of LeapFrog Summer Camp is entitled Out And About and it concentrates on exploring the community and neighborhood your child lives in and the various roles that people within the community play (mailman, police officer, etc.). We found that it was very easy to incorporate discussions about this into our summer camp experience because my son loves to point things out in the car as we pass by them. Some of the things we learned about our community on our many drives through town is that it has four fire department locations (2 city, one county, and one by our small airport), where the post office is located (and where it used to be located, which is now our police station), and of course, a stop at our favorite place in town, the public library. My son is very inquisitive about people, so talking about what the people do at these various places was also very easy to do.
One of the first activities we did for this particular week was a packing planner in which my son listed different items you might need for a trip to the beach, the mountains, the jungle, and the desert. Since we are gearing up for a family trip soon, this is something I want to do with him again just before we leave to encourage him to think and plan. In this particular activity, I can see that skills such as organizing, planning, critical thinking, and handwriting were covered. Naturally, as a “teaching mama” this thrilled me. He just thought it was fun.
My son also enjoyed the activity sheet in which he colored a map of the United States of America to show different features of the landscape.
I really enjoyed this one, also, because we were able to talk about where our state is located on the map and the land features native to our state (coniferous forests). I think the concept of states and country are still a little beyond his grasp, but it’s a skill he will be learning as he begins elementary school this year and I’m glad he is at least familiar with some of these things. This worksheet touched on geography and following a map legend, but again…my son thought it was just fun because he was coloring! I love that at this age everything is a learning experience and seen with such fresh little eyes.
In one activity we also got to discuss another country, China, and one of its native animals, the giant panda. In this activity my son was introduced to locating things on a map using a letter-number grid. Using the directions, he placed a letter “P” in the box where a giant panda would be located. I thought he would have some trouble grasping the concept of this activity, but after I demonstrated to him how gridding worked, he ran with it. Again, another fabulous learning concept packed into a fun activity. This was also another great discussion-starter as we contrasted/compared the people, places, animals, and customs of China with our own country.
We’re currently moving into week 3 of LeapFrog Summer Camp and the fun and learning continues! Sign up here if you haven’t already and enjoy making some fun summer memories while your child learns at the same time!