Friday, March 18, 2011

Happy Campers

As summer approaches I have to start thinking about what the boys will be up to while I'm at work.  Since Little Dog will be starting kindergarten in fall, and since he so desperately wants to be done with his current preschool, we won't be using the easy way out of having Big Dog join the summer program at Little Dog's school like we did last year.  Instead, I'm working out an elaborate schedule of week-long summer "camps."  Day camps, they aren't quite ready for overnights.  I'm also planning a few weeks in which I'll stay home and at least one that they'll spend with Grandma and Grandpa (because Grandma has asked, not because I'm forcing them.  Just want to be clear on that.)
I'm looking at the YMCA, the program that runs Big Dog's after school program, a fancy private school nearby, a local soccer program, the zoo, and just about any other place I can find that might interest the boys.
On the way to school one day while I was just beginning to think about summer, Big Dog was complaining about his Writer's Workshop program at school.  Turns out that he hates writing.  HATES writing.  While I personally don't understand how someone can hate writing, I tried to explain that while he may not enjoy it, writing can be fun.  I tried to tell him that no matter what he decides to do later in life, being able to write well will help him in ways he can't imagine.  He didn't seem to buy it, but he tolerated my motherly wisdom as much as you can expect an 7 year old to do.
I suggested that maybe we could find a summer camp that would help him love writing.  Like a drama camp where he could write plays that people get to act out, or a creative writing camp where he could make up stories like he used to write in preschool-thinking that maybe the Writer's Workshop focuses too much on telling his personal story writing about his life for him to find it interesting.  He didn't think so.  He hates writing he reminded me.
"What do you like?  Science?" I asked, because he talks about being a scientist frequently.
"Math.  I like math.  And science, but I really like math."
"Well, maybe we can find you a math camp," I said, not believing the words coming out of my mouth.  See, I've always been more of the arts and drama type.  Math camp would have been my idea of torture, but as soon as I said it, his eyes lit up.  He was excited.
"They have that?" he asked.
"I don't know, but I think so.  I'll have to find out," I answered not even knowing where to begin looking. And the search has been tough.  Guess what, even people who put on camps think that 7 year-olds aren't interested.  Apparently 9 is the golden age for math camp.  Before that I can find pirate camp, sports camp, reading camp, writing camp, drama camp, crafts camp even science camp.  I can find cooking camp, geography camp, zoo camp and so on, but no math camp.  And the one math-y camp I did find that he would be able to take, a "Math Crafts" camp, was already full.  In February!
So after a few weeks of hunting, I had to break it to him.  In the car on the way to school, I told him, "Big Dog, I'm having a really hard time finding math camp.  There are tons of other cool camps, but no math camp.  I'm sorry."
"That's ok," he replied, "Can I go to science camp then?"
As soon as he said it, Little Dog spoke up, "Yeah!  Science camp!"
"Sure," I answered, "There are all kinds of science camps.  What kind of science camp would you like?"
"I want science camp with experiments," said Little Dog immediately and with 100% certainty.
And I am back on the hunt.

1 comment:

geekymummy said...

Maybe Mr dog can take them to his lab for an impromptu science camp?!

Good luck, I'm dreading the summers!

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