Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Slice and a Story

How the humming bird created the night sky.
This year I was invited to the Slice and Story program at the Edinburg Common School in Edinburg NY. They provide pizza for the children and have adults read stories. I was one of the guests last year, and I really had a great time.

This year they asked me to be the first reader in the cafeteria before the children would be divided up to go to some of the classrooms. What a great honor!

But what to read? I could have read the Lorax by Dr. Seuss, or We're Going on a Bear Hunt by  Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. I could share one of the many stories from the American Indian Myths and Legends. Not sure what to do,  I reached out to the Summer Camp Professionals Facebook group (what a great resource!). They had so may great suggestions. The stories they gave me were amazing!


I finally settled on a selections of stories and drove down to the school for the program. I was greeted by Andrea Fort, one of my old summer staff campers and staff member, and a current member of our campfire council. We had a chance to catch up, and she informed me that the group was a little younger than I originally anticipated. Most of the students were 2nd graders and under, with a few 4th graders thrown into the mix.

 I decided to read "How the Hummingbird Created the Night Sky". I started out reading the script, but as the children got into the story, I started to embellish and have some fun with it. I do love telling a good story.

We had some time at the end of the presentation (about five minutes), so I decided to kick it up a notch with a rendition of "Going on a Lion Hunt!" For those of you new to camp, when I was a young director I started "Going on a Lion Hunt" as part of the campfire or during rainy days as a way to entertain the children (and staff). It became a camp favorite. Even my Mom wants a copy of it to watch!

Unfortunately, when I moved down south and tried to do the lion hunt, it wasn't well received and I stopped doing it. It was replaced by the song "Princess Pat", which became one of the favorite songs at LG Cook 4-H Camp.

When I returned to NY and Camp Sacandaga, it was quickly revived (the alumni wouldn't let me get away without doing it at least once), and now I bring it out once in awhile.

What is the Lion Hunt? To make a long story short, it's a trek to take a picture of a lion. Unfortunately my mother in-law is in tow (I'm not even married!). It has tall trees, crazy squirrels, bats and all kinds of adventures that are acted out as we look for the lion. I wont spoil the ending, so you have to visit to see it.

Anyway, I decided to perform the lion hunt with the children. I always smile at how the children react, but I find it even funnier when I see the adults reacting. (Especially to the mother in-law parts).

As things tend to go when I start telling a story, instead of a five minute lion hunt we went 15 minutes. And the kids were definitely wound up afterwards. I probably should apologize to the other readers who had to deal with kool-aid filled, riled up little lion hunters.

It was so much fun!. And it has sparked an idea for late May and early June. I will be doing free campfire story programs during the week for local families. Watch our facebook pages for details! Maybe I will throw a lion hunt in there a few times.

Thank you Edinburg Common School for the opportunity to participate in such a great program.

Below is a snippet from the lion hunt. We are still at home getting coffee to wake up before we go out.