Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Home School Group Activities: Caroling at the Convalescent Home

In honor of heading back to school, I am spending the week highlighting a few of the "extra" activities our home school group took part in this year.
If you want a brief summary of our group and what we do, read the beginning of yesterday's post here.
And remember, we did these things as a home school group, but you could easily do them with your boy scout troop, your church group or the members of your family.
I'm just here to share the fabulous ideas of my group in hopes that they inspire you.

On to activity number 2: 
Christmas Caroling at the Convalescent Home.

Danielle arranged this activity for us.
She chose a place her mom visited and had a contact for.
Danielle chose mostly familiar carols for us to sing and sent out and email with the words so we could practice with our kiddos ahead of time.
I think we even practiced together at some of our weekly nature days.
But I could be wrong about that and am just thinking now that it seems like a good idea.
We prepped the kids beforehand with what to expect and how to behave.
(you'll see how great that worked for my kids in a minute)
My kids were excited to take part and a little nervous to sing in front of other people.

Danielle's mom, Claire, was our music leader.
Her cheerful and energetic attitude helped the kids feel more at ease.
All of the parents sang along too and that helped.

I obviously did not give William enough prep as to what proper stage presence is supposed to look like.
I also did not remove the toy plane from his hand.
The toy plane he is using as a gun.
He kept his shirt up like that the whole time.
I didn't tell him to put it down--I just took pictures of it and chuckled to myself.

James was into it.
He loved Hark, the Herald Angels Sing best.
It's in the Charlie Brown Christmas movie so its a favorite.

Lilly stayed in Daddy's arms for the singing.
Side note--I am so in love with her hair like this and with those red bows.--dying.

After we sang to a larger group in the dining room, we took off down the halls to visit some of the guests who are no longer mobile.

My favorite part of the event was when we entered the room of a 107 year old woman.
That's right--107!
She is their oldest resident and the director told us that she would love to see the children.
She did.
She could hardly lift her head from the pillow, but she smiled a great toothless grin at all the kids.
She especially loved William and kept smiling and waving at him from her bed.

This woman was bald and no longer had teeth.
Her eye sight was going and her speech was already gone.
But she still loved life.
She took such great joy in seeing those kids in her room.
The director told us that her secret to such a long life was eating a hamburger and a bag of chips for lunch every day.
And drinking a cup of coffee.
And also, being in love with life.
Even the small part of it she experiences from her bed, she still loves it.
As evidenced by her big smile.
She was such a sweet lady.

It was a great couple of hours with the kids.
A lot of the people we sang to were very happy to see us.
Some of the people we saw were lonely or hurting.
It was good for the kids to see those people and, hopefully, encourage them to show compassion to them.
It is good to get them out of their world and begin to experience a much bigger world.

Next up; science class!  Come back for that fun.
Love from,


Lillian said...

A very sweet post.....fav's were the 107 year old womam and William's tummy!

Melanie said...

I think that your kids will remember that all their lives, that they met a 107 year old person....they might not even realize it now what a unique experience that is, but as they get older, they will.

katie said...

I've been wanting to do something like this for a few years. This post may give me the extra motivation to actually put it into motion.

Got to love boys who turn an airplane into a gun. My guys could relate to that!

Super love the pic of Aaron holding Lilly. Precious.