Our Cause Defines Us. A power phrase for sure, right? At the YMCAs of Central Ohio, it is definitely more than just a phrase. It represents the constant everyday work that goes into strengthening the surrounding community. Regardless of demographic, the YMCA provides the opportunity for everyone to learn, thrive, and grow in the community. Personal and social change happens at the YMCA because everyone comes together to fight for the cause of strengthening communities. This past week I had hands on experience with “Our Cause Defines Us”.
After two weeks of observation and prep work, I was finally ready to start my Kids’ Time Programming! At the Gahanna Branch YMCA and the North Branch YMCA, we did a two hour program all based around health. For the program, the first hour we colored a health education picture, made ants on a log, and played high-intesity games. This program was the first program as apart of a 8 week summer series for kids here at the Gahanna and North Branch YMCAs. In looking forward to the next 8 weeks, I have definitely found things that will work well and opportunities for improvement!
I am working specifically with kids that are ages 6-12. When working with this age group, I observed that it is best to keep activities in one room and have a fairly structured environment. Perhaps the most important thing that I found, was that kids of this age group really want to talk with you. A two way conversation was so important to the success of this program last night. Talking with the kids while we colored pictures and made snacks was a great time to have conversation about health. The biggest obstacle that I found during this time was when we switched from our room to the gym. Not all of the kids were able to participate in all of the activities, so I was unable to collect a lot of quality data. Next week, I will be keeping all of the activities in the same spot to ensure that each kid gets the opportunity to do all of the activities if they so choose.
It was great being able to provide an environment for kids to learn, thrive, and grow. I am so excited to get more hands on experience, and truly understand how “Our Cause Defines Us”!