From The World Of Parks & Recreation
By Doug Comer
With the kids having their Thanksgiving break this week, it has been a quiet week for the staff at the Parks and Recreation. But, this week gives us some time to work out the kinks and sharpen the Enrichment Program “Passport Around the World.”
The program, which primarily focuses on cultures of families throughout the world, tells the stories of life in other countries and their daily practices. From a section titled “A day in the Life of,” students learn about kids their age and their day-to-day life. Director Mike Book is particularly fond of this topic as it really opens the eyes of the students as he explains.
“The subject matter tells the story how, children in different countries, go about with their daily life. While most are similar to what kids do here, such as, go to school, play video games and sports, others have entirely different lifestyles that include working after school and the consumption of different types of food. It’s pretty neat to see their reactions when you tell them about the delicacies of other countries.”
Book does an opening before each enrichment day and this year he talks about the display pieces we have on lease. Each piece tells a story about the culture, their purpose and the beliefs that have been passed down for generations. Every day when I hear the presentation, I pick up something new about the artwork. And the research involved has been a tedious process.
“Our research on the exhibits pieces is like peeling an onion. There is an initial layer of information, but as you find key words that take you to another topic that relates to it, you find another story,” said Book.
“For example, we initially start with a brief history about the Cobra snake and its relationship with India. As we research, we unearth more information that relates to the different aspects of other countries. The staff has worked hard on finding not only the key facts about our exhibit pieces, but the small important details that go unnoticed, yet be informative to children of all ages.”
Again, the Passport Enrichment Program lasts until December 19th with “Family Nights” scheduled in December. For more information, please contact the HCPR.
I want to thank all those who stopped by to see the Gem, Fossil and Rock Show last weekend. We had over a dozen vendors showing their creative jewelry, precious gems and stones as well as an indoor water mining station. For our first time out, the turnout was great.
I was impressed with many of the youngsters who questioned the vendors about the different rocks and minerals they had on inventory. For me, age is a formality when it comes to discussing a topic between two people as long as there is a common interest. I am glad to see these young geologists interact with the vendors and I want to thank those vendors for giving their time to our Harrison County youth.
You may have seen some footage on Facebook or YouTube this summer with Robert and Libby Strong of the Smart Science Centre in Wheeling during our Science Camp. On Sunday of the show, the Strong’s paid a visit and treated the audience to an hour-long science presentation.
“We met the Strong’s this past year for our Space Enrichment and they have been very supportive of our work with kid’s education and have always said ‘yes’ to anything we have asked. We appreciated the two of them for stopping by and being a part of the success we had last weekend,” explained Book.
In closing, this week is important to many as it is not only Thanksgiving and the beginning of Deer Season, but a time where family travels back home to this beautiful state that we call “Almost Heaven.” For my family, this time of year is most important to my mom.
I remember the holidays as family reunions and how happy my grandmother would be for those who made it for turkey and football. And with her passing, my mom took over and became the “event coordinator.” Over the past week, I have received the calls, emails and now Facebook messages telling the details about Thanksgiving.
So remember, even though today’s world of parenting is very busy with activities and events, your “event coordinator” is working harder than anyone to make the holidays memorable, so give that person the respect they deserve and be there on that day, and tell them how wonderful the day is.
Have a great Thanksgiving!