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Boys & Girls Club activities 2008/2009 school year

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jflis

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For virtually the entire school year I have been way too busy to keep my Boys & Girls Clubs photo albums updated. I fixed that this past weekend with large photo albums for the entire school year for both the Litchfield and Merrimack campuses (Elementary schools)

For those of you who are interested, you can find the:

- 2008 Fall Session here.
- Remainder of the school year for Merrimack here.
- Remainder of the school year for Litchfield here.

These class sessions with these two schools include the following classes:
  • Fishing (2 sessions)
  • Survivor (Break up into tribes and provide challenges to solve for points)
  • Flight Club (building something new each week that flies)
  • Pumpkin carving
  • Model rocketry (several sessions, both beginner and advanced)
  • Cardboard boats
  • Carnival (designing and building carnival games)
  • Deck the Halls (making holiday decorations)
  • Ukrainian Edd decorating
  • Freeze Factory (fun with dry ice)
  • Minature Golf (design and build miniature golf courses)
  • Origami
  • Plastic model building
  • Balls & Tracks (Design and build roller coasters using pipe insulation and marbles)
  • Rubber band powered cars
  • Wired (House wireing)
  • Bubbles (the science and art of soap bubbles)
  • Magic (teaching slight of hand, prop magic and card tricks)

It's been a busy year, as you can well imagine :) Part of this summer will be planing some new courses to offer and to revitalize some old classes that I haven't done in a while.

Good stuff. Enjoy the photo albums :)
jim
 

Pat_B

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I always enjoy looking at your photos. I do a lot of work with our kids' different clubs and the first thing that comes to mind when seeing your photos is the massive amount of work that it takes to get ready for these classes. Wow, makes me tired looking at all the stuff you do with these kids. Lot of prep work :)
 

jflis

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I always enjoy looking at your photos. I do a lot of work with our kids' different clubs and the first thing that comes to mind when seeing your photos is the massive amount of work that it takes to get ready for these classes. Wow, makes me tired looking at all the stuff you do with these kids. Lot of prep work :)
LOL oh, don't get me STARTED on the prep work... A lot of these classes use *my* tools which I use at home as well, so each day it's a mad dash to gather up the tools I will need for any particular class.

Lesson plans are rather customized for each session as they are based on class size and who is in them. For example, if I am doing a magic class and half of the class is made up of kids who have taken the class a few times already and the other half are new... I need to keep BOTH groups engaged and learning new things. Can be a juggling act some times :)

It's odd, but what I love is the wide variety of classes I do each session and what I hate is the wide variety of classes I do each session... :)
 

Pat_B

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Gathering up tools for different projects has always been my problem too. I'll pull stuff out of their storage place for launching rockets then forget to put them back. We do a lot of camping, so I need to pull tools from their racks for our camper for each trip. I've bought some duplicate tools for our camper, but not the expensive ones. So the general idea of packing and unpacking 'stuff' for each of my interests gets a little old after awhile and creates a mess in the garage.

What's neat with your classes is how educational they are, yet fun at the same time.
 

jflis

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Thank you :) The kids think so too (and the director). In fact, this past season I actually got thank you notes from students *and* parents, so I must be doing something right.

What tickles me is the number of kids who show up on sign up day and simply ask "what classes are being taught by Mr. Flis?" LOL

I am hoping to bring many of these classes to some local summer camps this summer too. Then we begin planning for the new school year right after I return from NARAM....
 

mjennings

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great work Jim.

I was looking at the pictures, and wondered if could you elaborate on the Ukrainian egg decorating a little?
 

jflis

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great work Jim.

I was looking at the pictures, and wondered if could you elaborate on the Ukrainian egg decorating a little?
It is an interesting art form.

Basically, what you do is start with a white egg. You use a tool called a Knisk (sp?) which is essentially a small brass funnel (very tiny) on the end of a stick. The small end of the funnel is about the size of the tip of a ball point pen and the wide end is about 1/4" long. (remind me when I get back from LDRS and I will post pix of the tools and a close up of the technique)

SO, what you do is heat the funnel in a candle flame, use the heated brass funnel to scoop up some beeswax. You then draw the narrow end over the egg and capillary action will draw the wax onto the egg surface. When it stops depositing wax it is either empty or cooled off, so you re-heat and get more wax.

What you are drawing on the egg, at this time, are all of the lines, shapes, etc, that you want to be WHITE at the end of the decoration process.

Once you have covered (protected) all of the white areas you want, you dip in your first dye. You really need to plan your egg out from the start so that you know what colors you are using and can set the order. You want to start with the lightest colors first and work up to darker ones. My fav color is black. Seriously :)

Let's say you pick light blue as your color. 7-12 min in the dye, the out and on a "nail board" to dry for 2-3 min. A nail board is a board for holding drying eggs. 3 nails forming a triangle that you can rest your egg on while drying.

Then back to the Knisk where you now cover up everything that you want to say light blue (say, the petals of a flower). When done, into a different color, and so on.

Some eggs can have 6-9 colors on them and, with 3-4 different size Knisk's you have a great deal of control over details. The fine tools can lay down a line of wax as fine as the line of a ball point pen.

It's an incredible art.

A couple of points:
  • Leave the egg full while working it as a hollow egg will not sink in the dye
  • For an authentic Ukranian egg, leave the raw egg inside the shell. After 6-12 months it will dry up and harden. You can tell an authentic egg by lightly shaking it. If you can not hear the egg rattling around, it's a fake (or a cheapy...)
  • The professional dyes recommended for this techinque are toxic. The egg can not be cooked and eaten.
  • Care should be taken as you are working with flame, hot metal tools, melted wax, toxic dyes and raw eggs... :)

I never thought about it, but you know... For something just a bit different, this would make for an interesting class at a NARCON considering the timeframe... :)

As I mentioned, remind me when I get back and I can go into more detail with photo's and such.
 
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mjennings

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very cool, I've long used crayons in a similar fashion but not nearly with as cool a result. Thanks Jim, I'll try to remember to ask you to post pictures later on.
 
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