MEANINGFUL FUN: Chores, Projects, and Free-range time
Farm life has a logical and natural flow, but only meals are on a schedule. Each day is different, meeting the needs of the animals, gardens, and each other. Children are amazed at the freedom and responsibility they have on the farm.
Morning Free-Range Fun-
8:00 Breakfast Bell
Morning Chores & Feedings
Community Building Farm Project
Individual Farm Projects Game/Freetime/Baking/Exploring
Free Range Fun
12:00 Lunch Bell
Solo Time in cabins–read, journal, nap
6:00 Dinner Bell
Showers, brush teeth, pajamas, hygiene Campfire/Stories/Game
Cabin Community Time
Before each meal, children finish projects and seek out friends for a free-range adventure: 5:30 am fishing at the pond with counselors, cuddle time with the rabbits, grooming the goats, adding more to the farm fort, organizing a game in the back pasture, cooking in the kitchen with Chef Brandon, making art with barn wood scraps and baling twine… creativity really blossoms when the children are given this time to entertain themselves outside with the farm as their stage.
During our meaningful chores, children encounter a sense of responsibility and can instantly see how their effort has direct value on the farm. After each meal, the campers meet to volunteer for a chore along with 3-4 others and a counselor to guide them. Some of our regular chores include:
- cleaning the dining tables
- feeding animals
- watering the garden/flowers
- harvesting in the garden
- sweeping the pole barn
- landscaping and clearing brush
Projects: Group & Individual
Group: After chores and a break in the shade for a game or water fight, we allow the children to strategize how to accomplish a large task that requires all hands on deck. We often need to push the chicken tractor to a new pasture, use wheelbarrows to transport compost, use our muscles to haul firewood, clean out an animal stall, winnow wheat, wash wool, check the health of our goat herds using the FAMACHA scorecards… everybody is involved and working shoulder to shoulder.
Individual: Children then choose to join a counselor in a farm project– many of these ideas come from the campers, require real-world tools and problem-solving, and contribute directly to the farm! Canning and baking with harvested fruits or veggies, building a rabbit hutch or nesting box, repairing a gate, arranging flowers, whittling roasting sticks, constructing a fort, preparing a campfire, hunting for mulberries, carding and spinning wool… children love the opportunity to work closely with a counselor on a project of their own as they make a visible impact and enjoy their hard work right away.
Farm Camp Traditions
Well, you have to be a camper to learn and become part of these weekly camp favorites! Some are tasty, others are exhilarating– all add to the unique experience on the farm each day.