Museums plan for spring break camps
by Mark Andrews
Mar 21, 2014 | 715 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
To help provide some spring break excitement the week of April 7, both the Booth Western Art Museum and Bartow History Museum are again offering camps that mix education with fun for local youth up to age 12.

Kent Mullinax, art academy manager for the Booth, said this year’s Native American Ceramics Camp, geared toward children age 7 to 12, will help participants get a hands-on experience with a certain type of pottery, which is on display at the museum.

“A lot of times when we have pottery camps it’s on the pottery wheel and fire in the kennel, but with this one we’re bringing [Cathy Amos] in from the Carlos museum who’s going to teach the kids how to create pottery using Native American techniques from well over 100 years ago. ... They’re going to be doing it by hand, and then instead of firing it in the kennel, we’re actually going to have a fire pit where we’ll create a fire and fire it under the coals of the fire pit and then decorate it like the Native Americans would have done,” Mullinax said. “There’s two kinds of pots the Native Americans would make and that’s the polychrome pots and the black on black pots, and both of those kinds of pots we have examples of in the permanent collection at the Booth so they’ll actually be able to create things they see in the museum. So that’s been kind of the goal [of the camp] and just to give them a different perspective of pottery.”

The camp will last from 9 a.m. to noon April 7 to 11. The price is $125 for members and $150 for nonmembers. Snacks will be provided. Mullinax said interested parents should register their children in the next several days by calling 770-387-3849.

At Bartow History Museum, Manager of Programs Kelly Schlott said camp participants will learn what it was like to be a child of the past while having fun along the way with the museum’s spring break programs, Kids at Work, Kids at Play and Storybook Life.

“Part of [Kids at Work, Kids at Play for ages 4 to 6 ] is to orientate [participants] to different types of games, so we encourage them to talk about games they like and we take them through the museum and show them things kids would have done a long time ago and then they get to do some interactive stuff,” Schlott said. “They get to make some crafts and make some games that kids would have played with. We make whirligigs; we make yarn projects. We’re playing lemonade stand this year, so they get to set up and do their snack time at a lemonade stand. And there’s a bunch of other interactive stuff that they get to do.”

“[For Kids at Work, Kids at Play for ages 7 to 11], there are similar ideas but we step it up a little bit, so it’s a little bit [more] complicated crafts that they need a little more time to do. They make their own scarecrow. We make more complicated whirligigs ..., and they get to play chimney sweep games. And there’s pretty much a newspaper throwing game we made up so they can pretend they’re newspaper boys and girls and they score points — just a lot of different stuff.

“We try to make everything we do not just learning and then fun. We have scavenger hunts in the museum and craft time in the museum so that they get to interact in a funner and less structured way.”

The camp for 4- to 6-year-olds will be April 7 from 9 a.m. to noon and the camp for 7- to 11-year-olds will be April 8 from 9 a.m. to noon.

A Storybook Life also will be geared for children ages 4 to 6, but will look at history from a different perspective than the Kids at Work, Kids at Play camps.

“This [camp is] a way to get kids to look at history not as a fact base, but to get them to look through the eyes of books and characters they’re already familiar with,” Schlott said. “It may be some more modern characters, but some of them know older storybook characters like Laura Ingalls Wilder and letting them think about the character and think about things that they would have done — it’s just a different way of approaching history, but then also a lot of [the characters] are kids so we get to play the kids’ games and do activities at that level.”

She continued, “That will be a fun one too because they get to act out their story and create their own storybooks based on whatever time they want.”

A Storybook Life wil be held April 9 from 9 a.m. to noon.

The price for all camps is $18 for members and $20 for nonmembers. Schlott said the museum encourages all parents to register their children for the camps by April 1, but will accept registration requests as space permits. To register, call 770-382-3818 ext. 6288.