Camp AJ 2012 :: reading rewards and pirate ships

31 days of blogging catch-upThis is part 3 of the untold story of Camp AJ. If you missed the earlier posts, you can find them on the index page of 31 Days of Blogging Catch-Up.

When I first envisioned Camp AJ I knew there would be a reading challenge for The Dyl. He does like to read at times, but he was struggling with comprehension during 4th grade. There was no question that he would need to read throughout the summer to maintain his skills, so I knew I had to make it fun for him, too. I created a rewards chart in the shape of a thermometer and marked off 15 minute increments. For each 150 minutes D read he would receive a reward of some kind. His goal for the summer was 600 minutes, at which point he would have 4 rewards from me as well as a reward book from both Barnes & Noble and Half Price Books. Reading became a mainstay in every Camp AJ day.

D’s mom helped me with rewards based on his tastes and recent “wants”, then I took care of all the legwork to make them happen as he earned them. Along the way Dyl would color in the thermometer chart for each amount of reading he accomplished, and he also added the book titles to the chart so we had a record of his summer books. Of the 4 rewards his favorite was a visit to the pirate ship sno-cone stand. There’s nothing more fun than visiting a pirate ship on the side of the road! No matter what else he worked for, the pirate ship was a highlight of his summer.

For the final day of Camp AJ 2012, Dyl requested a sleepover at my apartment. Naturally, the sleepover had to begin in late afternoon so there was plenty of time for spontaneous activities. I let him plan the whole evening, though, and his requests were simple: pizza, night swimming, and staying up as late as he wanted. No problem! But I did add one more art project – a framed memory collage of his summer. We chose photos of all the things he’d enjoyed over the months, and I created a little pipe cleaner sculpture to resemble the one at the Dallas Museum of Art. It’s such a great memento for Dyl, and he still has it hanging on his bedroom wall. When the summer ended, he had a heart full of memories to share.

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

Camp AJ 2012

The final Camp AJ of 2012 marked a turning point for the boy: the first time he slept on the couch in another room instead of in his sleeping bag beside my bed. Becoming 10 years old changes a lot of things!


Camp AJ 2012

Join me again tomorrow for the story of this summer’s Camp AJ. If you’ve missed any of this month’s Blogging Catch-Up, you can see a list of the posts on this index page. You can also subscribe to phrenetical and receive new posts via email. Just complete the form below.

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31 Days is a challenge issued by The Nester to post on your blog each day in October. You can check out other participants by visiting the official 31 Days welcome page.


About Jules Q

sharing stories of life, faith, and love for pop culture

Posted on 5 October 2013, in People I Love and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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