Kids learn history at hands on program

First Posted: 7/12/2009

In the year 2019, the now 7-year-old Will Wharton will be able to go back and see the note he wrote to himself Saturday at the finale of the Hands on History program at the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History.
Heather Elliott, director of programs and education at the museum, said the kids really learned a lot during the week-long camp that was for kids ages 5 to 15.
She said most of the kids who wrote themselves a note for the time capsule will still be in school locally, so they wont be that hard to track down.
On Monday, the kids got to learn how to make different crafts out of paper. They made smoke paper with water, paper and India ink. Elliott said it was one of the kids favorite activities. They also made granite paper by placing a piece of paper on the sidewalk and coloring with crayons such as black, white and gray to create the effect of granite.
Tuesday, the museum was Abuzz with everything about bees. The kids made a papier-mch beehive, and rolled wax candles. They also learned about the value of honey bees and sampled different varieties of honey.
The kids got a real kick out of making their own musical instruments on Wednesday. Some of the kids made diddley bows while others made rainstick drums.
On Thursday, the group learned about the Granite City. They found out that many of the buildings in the area are made from the granite that came from the nearby granite quarry.
Friday was Terrific Textiles day, during which the kids learned about all of the old textile mills in the area. The younger kids made place mats that day. The older kids made belts and bracelets of their own.
On Saturday, the museum held a day of celebration for the Hands on History program. Some of the crafts made by the kids were on display during the celebration and refreshments were served.
Elliott said she wants to invite some of the children back to the museum on different days to show off their diddley bows.
Will Wharton brought a colonial wig to camp one day that he had made with his grandmother.
I took two ribbons, real curlers, mop strings and the sleeve of a white T-shirt to make it, he said explaining the process.
One of the museum docents, Ruby Maxey, said the program was a big success this year.
All the kids enjoyed the camp. Heather was so wonderful with them. She is already planning for next year.
Contact Mondee Tilley at [email protected] or at 719-1930.

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