Made For The Shade

Sometimes the simple act of reading a book or making up stories is overlooked. Keep a supply of story books on hand for staff to read on hot afternoons.

· Read A Book

Find a comfortable place to sit in the shade. Choose a book from the camp library or a favorite you or a camper has brought to camp. You can read a short book every day or read a chapter or two a day from a longer book.

· Add A Line

Sit in a circle and choose someone to begin a story. Explain that each person will add one or two sentences to the story. Go around the circle as many times as necessary to finish the story. A variation of this activity is to have the group brainstorm words before they start. Record each word on an index card, and give each camper one of the cards. Each person then incorporates that word into the story when it is his/her turn.

· Answer A Question

Prior to this activity, make up a set of index cards with a question on each card. The questions should help campers tell something about themselves: What pets do you have? What is your favorite musical group? What is your favorite food? The questions can also be more difficult for older campers: What do you think is the greatest threat to the world today? If you could save one group of people in the world, who would you save? How? What do you want to do when you grow up? Why?

Find a comfortable place to sit outside, and encourage campers one at a time to select a card and answer the question. Counselors can begin by answering the first question.

Nancy Ferguson is an Outdoor Ministries consultant specializing in the creation of program resources for faith-based camps. She is the author of several books, including Training Staff to be Spiritual Leaders. She can be reached via e-mail at

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One comment on “Made For The Shade

  1. Carolyn Caufman on said:

    Great ideas–and including some old-goldies! The “Micro Hike” I learned as “Lasso an Ant.” It came from a book with a title something like “Acclimatization” or “Acclimatizing.” (Not sure they are in print and cannot find mine!) Be sure to provide a magnifying glass along with the string, and maybe some writing supplies to draw and or list what is seen.

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