Maryville students enjoy variety of enrichment camps
By Matthew Stewart | (email@example.com)
While Maryville students were on fall break, they still had access to a variety of educational opportunities.
Educators recently organized intersession programming at the district’s seven schools. They offered a total of 29 enrichment camps throughout the system.
During Sam Houston Elementary School’s three days of enrichment camps, educators organized camps on drama, sports and nutrition, science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), cooking and LEGO.
Educators hosted 45 students for its three morning sessions and 60 students for its afternoon sessions, said Principal Scott Blevins. They offered two cooking and STEM sessions.
In STEM camp, students built hoop planes and participated in the Hoop Plane Olympics. They also learned about upcycling and built upcycled flight sculptures. The elementary-schoolers later built derby racers and implemented designs to safely transport eggs to the ground after a 50-foot drop from a Maryville fire truck. They also participated in STEM Challenge Day, competing in a series of design challenges meant to test their engineering skills.
“I like STEM, because I like to do experiments,” said third-grader Jack Delamater. “I like to design things, see what happens and improve them. If you’re doing a lab experiment, it’s fun to see if it’ll explode.”
Some students, such as first-grader Sidney Daves, were happiest with the creative process.
“I’ve liked working in groups, brainstorming and building something new,” she said. “It’s been a lot of fun. I wish I could do more of it in class.”
In cooking class, students made mouths out of apples, peanut butter and minimarshmallows. They also made cheese and peanut butter sandwiches then cut them into sea animal shapes using cookie cutters.
The elementary-schoolers also decorated aprons, baked sugar cookies, assembled fruit kabobs and learned about herbs. They also made trail mix using cereal, pretzels, chocolate candies and marshmallows.
“I’ve had so much fun this week,” said third-grader Lillian Headrick. “I can’t really decide what’s been my favorite activity, because it’s all been really fun. I do a lot of cooking with my dad. I love cooking, and I have a lot of fun with it.
“We use recipes that have been down through the generations,” she said. “We’re making something that my ancestors used to make. It’s really fun to think about.”
Teachers were pleased with the level of student involvement in their camps.
“I’m continually impressed with their ideas, because they’re better ideas than I would’ve had at their age,” said teacher Miranda Reagan, who led the morning STEM class. “I’ve tried to give them the right amount of information, not too much. I don’t want to influence their creative thinking, because they’ve done a fantastic job this week.”
“The class was a great way to expose children to cooking,” said kindergarten teacher Teresa England, who led the morning cooking class. “The kids got to learn about herbs, which some have not even seen. We’ve also taught them about healthy eating, table settings and table manners. We’ve covered a variety of themes, and it’s been a really good time for all of us.”