Thinking About Projects Year – Round!

Written by former Technology Director Nola E.! If you would like to be a featured blogger, email [email protected]

Living in New Hampshire and watching the snow pile higher and higher has really made me miss the sunny summers at TIC! While shoveling snow for the millionth time, I started thinking about how great it would be to have a robot to do this for me. A quick search online showed me that such a thing does exist and can also clean up leaves in the fall!

This neat little robot reminded me of some of the amazing projects I saw when I entered the robotics room at TIC. While we don’t have to deal with shoveling snow during the summer, there are problems that need innovative solutions, regardless of what season it is! When I searched a little more, I discovered another fascinating robot that does its work during the summer! This robot provides a new and interesting way to make art at the beach by drawing intricate patterns and portraits in the sand.

Seeing a winter themed robot as well as a summer themed robot reminded me of how important it is to be thinking creatively year-round. No matter what tech option you’re in, you’ll be able to express yourself creatively, using the inspiration all around you! So even though camp is several months away, it’s never too early to start brainstorming projects to do with your fellow campers!

Social Benefits of Riding the Bus

These days, kids are spending more and more time interacting on digital devices rather than in person. When they want to have a conversation, it is a quick text away rather than a phone call. Emotions are displayed with emojis, not with smiles. Kids need to be in social settings to develop skills that will help them in college and beyond. Believe it or not, riding a school bus twice a day with the same group of kids can be incredibly beneficial to developing friendships and breaking down social barriers. On a bus, kids are automatically in smaller groups, and have the opportunity to develop real relationships with people they may not otherwise talk to. I had the pleasure of recently attending a keynote speech by Bob Ditter, an adolescent and family therapist from Boston, MA. In his talk, he spoke about the importance of utilizing small groups in order to develop the social relationships of young kids. In his words, when kids interact in small groups, they relax and the social barriers are broken down. They become comfortable quickly, and start to develop connections that last when the group size increases. In other words, kids that develop relationships in small groups are more successful in larger groups where the social dynamic can be trickier to navigate. They are less likely to feel ostracized and left out, even when their interests may not align with the majority of the group.

So how does this relate to summer camp? On the first day of camp, a camper is immediately placed in a group, often times with complete strangers. He of she is then told “these are your new best friends, see you in a couple weeks!” This is extremely overwhelming, but imagine if that same child had ridden the bus to camp that morning, and was sitting next to somebody that was equally as nervous about starting camp. Prior to arriving at camp, both children are connected by a common feeling and situation. Even if those two children don’t say a word to each other all bus ride, all of a sudden a familiar face is added to the sea of strangers upon arrival. Both campers are immediately more relaxed and comfortable in what can be an intimidating environment. Now imagine at the end of a great camp day. Both campers are back on the bus, in their small group environment. They are much more likely to open up, share stories, and make friendships. As an added bonus, these new found friends are part of a small “bus crew” if you will, and are able to form their own social dynamic within the camp environment.

Fair warning, campers may come home singing this:

Jortsssssss

IMG_8346Max and Jason two of TIC DC North’s senior campers have enthusiastically been advertising “Jorts” to the whole camp. These two and their whole film crew have even filmed an advertisement including “Jorts.” Their enthusiasm for these off kilter outfits has been nothing short of infectious. We are looking forward to the full viewing on Friday, at our Open House!

 

Water…Melon Day

Today, August 4th, was Water Day at TIC DC North. The counselors decided to turn up the notch and add a Watermelon Eating Contest! 10 counselors and two directors competed in this summer time classic. The rules: 1. You have to eat the watermelon down to the rind as fast as you can, and 2. You can not use your hands at all. Our winner was…..camper turned counselor Alek Zherka!IMG_8391IMG_8350IMG_8351

A Picture Worth a Million Words.

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Shraya, Chloe, and Lulu share a moment of fun in Ultimate Frisbee. These two sisters, and friend are always having a blast in whatever activity they participate in. Their laughter, love of competition, drive, smarts, and technical skills, make these three excellent leaders in tech and athletics. Keep it up girls!

 

And the Golden Disk goes to……

Last session two of  TIC DC North’s campers and Golden Disk winners, Marshall R. and Jared W., astounded campers, counselors, and directors with their Graphic Design project. This team not only designed a video game cover, but they did the disk design, brought in an actual Xbox game case and created an instructions insert. PLUS the game they designed art work for was created by other campers at TIC that same session, and then they burned the game on the actual game disk. Check out Marshall and Jared’s Golden Disk Project!

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Pokemon Go: TIC Edition

This week at TIC DC North, campers and counselors teamed up to go on the adventure of a lifetime: a Pokemon scavenger hunt! Teams had the challenge of finding Pokemon hidden all around the GDS campus, at which time counselors used their personal phones to “catch ’em.” At the end of the day scores were tallied and two winners were determined based on amount of Pokemon found, and point values of Pokemon. One camper had the inside track and filmed the whole thing. Take a look at this camper filmed Pokemon mini-documentary. Big thank you to Amos Steinglass for filming and creating this project.

 

Namaste

One of DC North’s favorite activities this session has been Yoga! Kelley, our Yoga specialist, has been teaching campers and counselors alike Vinyasa’s and various different flows. All are taking time out of their day for some quiet, peaceful, stretching and exercise and are very excited about it. Check out Yoga when you join us for Session’s 3 and 4!
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Staff Assistants

DC North has some wonderful Staff Assistants this session. Meet Roman, Samson, Carter, Mason, Braden, and two of our LTP’s Tiffany and Hayley. These young leaders work hard every day to make camp even better, and brighter than the day before. The Staff Assistants are learning the nitty gritty of what makes camp, camp in athletics and tech combined. Thank you Staff Assistants for all your hard work!DSC_0063