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Sample day at Summer Jam + Swim Camp

This year our camp will be held at the Edgewater Athletic Club. EAC has partnered with us for several years and we are excited to be able to use their space again this year! Plus, their swim instructors are great with the kids.


Upon arrival, we are greeted by an employee of the club and check-in. Our room every morning will be the large group exercise room straight ahead on the right. We walk in to find two music instructors ready to welcome us with the first activities of the day. We drop our bags off in a bin along the wall and then receive a bag of crayons, a folder, and are helped in finding a spot at one of the colorful floor desks to begin decorating that day’s coloring sheet!


Each week and day of camp has a theme. Today is the first day of Our Orchestra! That means that we will be exploring the music and instruments from the string family of the orchestra - the violins, violas, cellos, and basses. That’s one of Mr. Sam’s favorite days because he loves playing the violin. Beautiful string music will be wafting through the air as we explore this new space and adjust to our surroundings


Once all of the campers have arrived and settled in, coloring time is over. We put our coloring sheets in our new folders, and gather round for the Hello Song! We sing together as we get to introduce ourselves and learn all of our new friends' names. As we finish our song, we transition into a listening and movement activity. Mr. Sam likes to see if we can be good listeners. He sings, “Do Me Sooooo” and we all sing back to him with our beautiful voices. Then he claps, “Taka taka ti ti”. Can we feel the beat together? Ok, let's listen to this exciting piece for strings and move to the beat!


After we have warmed up our voices and bodies, we start learning about the instruments and music of the day. I’ve heard of the violin before, but what about that really big violin, what’s it called? The cello! Let’s listen to the sound of the cello…


Well, about this time, we start feeling a little hungry, so we clean up, take a bathroom break, wash our hands, and find our mid-morning snack. During snack time, we get to hear more pretty music and maybe have some free play time with building toys and musical books.


After our snack, it’s time for the guest artist! Now this is exciting. Many days of camp will feature a special guest artist…a professional in the theme of the day who pays us a visit and engages us in a wondrous display of their talent. Today, the guest artist is Ms. Katie! She has brought her instrument with her and wow, it’s so big! What could it be? Ms. Katie plays the cello! We learn about how the cello makes a sound, and how important this thing called the bow is. Then she plays a beautiful song. After that Mr. Sam gets his violin out and they play together! It’s called a duet. We really want to try playing these instruments ourselves, and the teachers tell us that at the end of the day, we’ll have a chance!


But first, it’s time to begin the craft of the day! Every day of camp we will get to build our own little musical instrument, and today we will build our own little box violins! We each receive a mac and cheese box, a violin-shaped cutout, a wooden paint stick, and a few other bits, and slowly begin assembling our box violin. It takes patience and focus, but soon enough, we are starting to see our colorful little toy violins coming together. How cool. We get a little bow, which is definitely NOT a straw ;)


Then Mr. Sam invites us to line up with our new violins. He shows us how to hold the violin and use our bow to play the strings, which are definitely NOT rubber bands ;) We all play a song together, just like the violin section in an orchestra!


After our violin performance, it’s time to relax and gather for storytime. Today’s book is called “I Know A Shy Fellow Who Swallowed a Cello.” Haha, that’s impossible! Let’s find out what happened as Mr. Sam reads to us.


Then we get to try out a real violin! We each take a turn playing the violin as Mr. Sam helps us hold the small instrument that’s just our size. Together we play a little song!


Before we know it, the morning is over and it’s time for lunch. We line up at the door with our lunches and some new teachers meet us at the door to go outside for food and fun. We walk to the park and play for a while. Soon it’s time to go back inside for swimming!


Our swim instructors guide us to the pool and help us change into our swimsuits, which are hopefully already on under our clothes. We start with some beginning swim lessons and are grouped according to our abilities. After a while, we get to have free playtime, and it’s a joy moving around in the pool with our new friends.


Well, as they say, time flies…and soon our parents are here to pick us up. We dry off and meet them, and oh how we missed them! Time to go home and rest. What a fun day at camp!


Our Orchestra is one of four weeks of curricula we have devised for our campers. For more information about the camp and to read about our various different themes, check out this page.


Of course, feel free to contact us at 773-929-4666 with any questions. We look forward to seeing you this summer!