After announcing the theme, we have people sign up for the day. Jobs are divided up and each mom signs up for a job. (There are some Dads who are also integral parts of helping too!) From there everyone works and does their best to pull off a one of a kind event. My words truly feel inadequate to describe this event. It just makes my heart so happy to be a part of all of this. I'm thankful for friends who are willing to put in this type of effort and who look forward to the fun of this day!
So much work happens in advance from decorations to planning games, cooking food and making costumes, preparing crafts and setting up experiments and so much more! My family loves to dress up for the themes. It really adds to the fun!
Our theme this year ... Wee Gillis. This is a treasured Five in a Row title about a boy who lives in Scotland. It has come time to decide if he will live in the highlands or the lowlands. He spends time in both and still can't decide.
A delightful display of Scottish things.
The games area is readied.
Jane and Steve Lambert!
What a delight to have them come and experience this with us. We have taken the curriculum that Jane so lovingly wrote and used it as a basis for our day. This is more than a curriculum. Its bound together families and friends in a journey with sweet memories and shared experiences. I was so excited when they said yes to our invitation to come! And so was the rest of our group!
I loved seeing Jane just delight in all of it. Taking in the details and having fun.
We split the kids into 3 groups based roughly on age and they rotated visiting 3 areas. There was the Lowlands.
Our next station is the location that Wee Gillis eventually settled. He was able to do this because of the skills that he had learned while in the Lowlands (shouting loudly) and the Highlands (holding his breath) which enabled him to be a great bagpipe player.
At this station, the kids did experiments involving sound and lung capacity.
Listening to sound through water and noticing the differences to sound traveling in air. Two rocks were hit together under the water for them to listen to.
Each pair had a balloon and one person listened while the other said something with their mouth on the balloon. You can tell that this was a fun one.
In order to test lung capacity, bottles were filled with water and tuned upside down in a tub with water in it. The bottles were marked for easy measuring. I love this picture of Daniel taking a BIG breath! Reminds me of a photo in the book of Wee Gillis doing the same thing.
Each group made a crest and a yell.
Played a game of "Stalking the Stagie". Really cute! I think the older kids had to hop on one foot. It was similar to red light, green light.
As one child won a round, he or she got to be the "Stagie" for the next round. Loved seeing Eliana joining in!
The boys are determined to catch that stag!
The other game in this area was a tag style game invoking the Loch Ness Monster. Such fun and creative games!
As they tagged someone, that person had to join in with the holding the monster as they continued to chase down the rest in the group. There was a defined area for the game too.
The game ended when everyone was caught.
A bit better picture of that "Scottish man" (Roger) with Steve & Jane, Isaiah and Eliana.
As we finished up with the morning activities, it was time for a group shot. This is most if not all of the children and some of the parents.
Next was an oatmeal eating contest. Each person (anyone could enter) was given a bowl of oatmeal (small) and whoever finished first won! There were several winners (top 5 I think).
Time for lunch! We all sign up to bring various food to share. We have a number of allergies present so food is labelled too so that those with food issues can make safe choices. (They also go through the line first.)
Aren't the napkins cute! I love all of the details that the decorating committee takes care of in all that they do. Did you notice the signs?
Vases with thistle, heather and a Scottish flag.
Here's a better picture of Roger. Looks handsome, doesn't he?
After lunch, it was time for crafts and some Highland games! There were four games to choose to participate in.
Hammer Toss - There were 3 rings varying distances from the starting line. You received more points the further the ring was from the start line.
Caber Toss - The goal is to hold the caber upright, toss it into the air so that it flips end over end and lands in a straight line from the tosser.
Discus - The discus was made from two frisbees glued together to make a bit heavier and also a bit less aerodynamic. It was a little hard to toss. Well, for me anyway.
The last game was archery.
This was also a very popular game.
There were also several crafts that the children could choose to make. Creative and so well organized too!
Yarn paintings using either plain paper or a preprinted Scottish design.
You could also choose to make a Scottish Crest Badge
We also had a free play area with some sensory activities and other things that could be enjoyed at any time during the day. A sensory bin using oats and various items hidden inside.
And after a full day of fun, things wind down. Time to relax and slow down.
Some of the groups with their crests. (Sorry we didn't get a chance to present their yells!)
Every year I'm amazed how the event and how it turns out. Nobody really has a full picture of all that will happen since there are so many people working on various pieces. In the end, it is always so much more than I ever could have imagined and at this point, I know to expect that. Seeing the end result when so many share their gifts and talents is such a blessing. I love this day and am thankful to have sweet friends to share in this fun.
Oh that learning would always be this much fun!