This year’s Play and Learn Summer Camp occurred during the four weeks of July. Registration is done by referral where children are referred based on need and ability. Interested parents should contact the EMCS Society for more information. The information is provided below.
by Ebony Logins
Every summer, the EMCS Society’s Play & Learn Summer Camp helps children ages 6 to 9 overcome challenges with literacy. Students are tested at the beginning and end of the 4-week day camp to measure their reading, writing, and math skills. It is a play-based learning intervention model that, over the past 5 years, has maintained or improved the literacy skills of almost 120 local children in order to minimize the negative impact of summer learning fall-off. This year, for the first time, the camp has incorporated measurements for physical literacy as well.
The term ‘physical literacy’ is relatively new, gaining traction in literature in the early 1990s. Sedentary behaviour is the arch nemesis of physical literacy, so the importance of this recently recognized form of literacy is quite obvious. The World Health Organization has identified physical inactivity as “the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality causing an estimated 3.2 million deaths globally”.
Just like traditional literacy (ABC, words, sentences), numeracy (123, fractions, equations), and music (do-re-mi, scale, score), physical literacy focuses on fundamental movements, sequences, and tasks. Can
adian Sport for Life defines it as “the motivation, confidence, physical competence, knowledge, and understanding to value and take responsibility for engagement in physical activities for life”. In the Play & Learn Summer Camp, this is achieved in the same way as the development of other literacy skills – through play-based learning that inspires a life-long enjoyment of the task. Developing self-confidence and enjoyment of all forms of literacy can help provide children with a meaningful, valuable, and entertaining alternative to screen time.
All children attended for free due to the generous support of the Rotary Club of Sooke, Andy’s 2-for-1 Pizza, the Sooke Harbourside Lions, the Sooke Region Literacy Project, School District No. 62 (Sooke), TELUS, Coast Capital Savings, Vancity, the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, and the Edith Lando Charitable Foundation. Thanks to these organizations, the 5th annual Play & Learn Summer Camp was a success yet again, with each tested participant maintaining or improving their skills in all incorporated forms of literacy.
Ebony Logins is a Community School Coordinator at the EMCS Society for School District No. 62 (Sooke). The EMCS Society is committed to providing life-long learning opportunities for people of all ages in the Sooke Region.