The Yurt Game
Today was another full and vibrant day. The campers got washed up and were all ready for the morning warm-up exercises. The first game we played was called the "yurt" game, led by Teacher Yun. She introduced how to play and the principles behind the game, so each camper would understand the importance of cooperation. Given the weight requirements of the participants, Teacher Yun invited the older campers to play the game first.
This game required a high level of cooperation and coordination among the participants. The tension from the campers on every side was supposed to form a stable circle that looked like a yurt, so they would not fall down.
In the beginning, the campers tried several times but still could not fully understand the importance of cooperation. They swung back and forth. After more attempts, the campers eventually cooperated perfectly, and the whole circle became stable. Since there weren't enough participants to reach the ideal number for the game, the circle didn’t look quite like a yurt. But from this game, the campers experienced the importance of cooperation. The game was successful!
The Human Chair Game
It was still too early for breakfast, so Teacher Yun introduced another game called “human chair," which was a team game that helped campers to experience the spirit of teamwork. This game required everyone to be fully involved and engaged; no one could be lazy.
Although all the campers were involved in the game and tried many times, they still failed. We discovered the reason was because the big age gap caused a power imbalance. Throughout the whole process, everyone tried their best, but it was unsuccessful. We adjusted our strategy and let some younger campers be cheerleaders for the rest of us. We tried the game one more time, and we succeeded!
Post-Surgery Graduate Gives Back
After the two games, we had breakfast, followed by a sign language dance taught by Lina. Lina was one of the patients that LRS subsidized in 2010, when she was a high school freshman. Lina graduated from college this year. This year she volunteered to help with our LRS summer camp and was having fun with us.
Lina was patient and friendly as she taught, and everyone was paying full attention to learn the dance. Lina also gave out awards. As she passed out Love Coins and Love Bracelets to the campers, Lina explained their significance. She told them that Little Red Scarf would love to share with them and their families. We should learn to collect love, to share love, and to pass on love. Love Coins and Love Bracelets can help remind us of these important lessons. This wrapped up our first class.
Heart to Heart Game
After a break, it was time for more games with Teacher Yun. Games provide a fun way for campers to learn as they play. Games cultivate in kids an eager desire for knowledge, and it improves their ability to collaborate. We want campers to explore and learn from our summer camp.
This was an outdoor game called "heart to heart" that required teams of two to work together. Arm strength and the level of intensity exerted between the two players also played a crucial role. In this session, a team that succeeded and a team that failed had opposite reactions. The players in the team that failed looked frustrated and glum. In contrast, the players from the successful team were happy and in high spirits.
We expected the campers to have different responses, so the teachers took this opportunity to let the campers know the power of understanding and support. For those who lost the game, we still applauded them and encouraged them to embrace the challenge until they succeeded. This was the last game of the morning.
Next on our agenda was the second class of the morning, which was a role play activity organized by volunteer Xiao Xiao.
We divided the campers into 4 teams according to their ages. There were 4 different roles: mother chicken, baby chicken, witch, and skunk. The content of the story was made up by the children’s own imaginations. They assigned the roles on their own, and campers were given the space for self-directing.
After receiving their group assignments, the campers quickly started discussion. Each team was very cautious, for they were afraid other teams would steal their ideas. Therefore, they discussed everything in low voices.
Due to the hot weather, the afternoon classes started at 3:00. Volunteer Xiao Wen led the campers to play with Rubik's Cubes. Through the children's practical exercises, there were a few campers who could restore the cubes. Xiao Wen told us there were methods to restoring the cubes, and once you know about them, restoring the cubes would not be too difficult. The boys were doing better than the girls at restoring the cubes.
Cookie Eating Contest
Our next game was a cookie eating contest. We don't need to explain this one. The photos tell you everything!
Drawing and Coloring
Teacher Chang and our volunteers enthusiastically led the campers into the beautiful art world of drawing. At any time, colorful crayons are always able to lead children into the uniqueness of their own inner world.
The children drew an ideal world with crayons, a world that is full of innocence and goodness. We all enjoyed the paintings. It was the start of sharing happiness.
This is a society full of love and without boundaries. These kids are lucky to live in such a happy and harmonious place, where there are so many people who care about them. We hope that all the campers plant their seeds of dreams right here in the land of hope, to watch them grow and create better futures. We send our best wishes to the campers and their families!
Original article written by LRS staff, translated by Yanyan Zhang, edited by Carolyn D.
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