FREE fun interactive show for families this weekend. Deadline to register April 8th!

This weekend (April 10 & 11) kids can have a truly “magical” experience interacting remotely – but live – with the actors of Northern Ireland’s Cahoots Theatre Company in its virtual production of The University of Wonder & Imagination.

Millersville University’s Office of Visual & Performing Arts is “paying the tuition” so this one-of-a-kind experience is available FREE.  Invite friends to register along with you and your family – up to 10 families at a time!  There are sensory-friendly and audio-described options available.  More info and a link to register is below. 

Here is the link, but registration closes APRIL 8!  So “enroll” now! The show is approximately one hour and is for ages 7+. Please see the registration link below to sign up for the time slot and date that works best for your family.
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Summer Camps: Part 2

I just received another list of summer camps for grades 1-12 that are online & outdoor!

Camp Volunteer Opportunities (High School Students – Survival in the Wilderness Camp)

2021 Camp Information

The Incredible Mini-Sphero! Camp flyer/registration…  Robotics, Coding, Programming, and More…(Grades 5-8)

Circus in Your Backyard! Camp flyer/registration– (Grades 4-7)

Summer Splash with CS Zero! Camp flyer/registration – Python Coding from Carnegie Mellon University (Grades 7-9)

Camp Invention Flyer– Think Creatively, Build Confidence (Grades 1-6) Discounts available until May 26.  

Health Care Career Exploration Camp flyer/registration – Partnership with PA College of Health Sciences (Grades 9-12) – Registration DEADLINE – May 24!

Heart Map flyer/registration – What is your Emotional Landscape? (Grades 9-12)

Survival in the Wilderness flyer/registration – Challenge Accepted! (Grades 5-8)

Summer Experiences for Families at Lancaster County Central Park

Art of Nature Journaling-Summer Camp 2021– Journaling and Drawing to Capture Nature at its Best! 

(Parents, Grandparents, and Students, entering grades 4-8)

Creek Exploration Camp flyer/registration – Crayfish, Water Pennies, Stoneflies, and More!

(Parents, Grandparents, and Students, entering grades 4-8)

Many camps have limited space, so early registration is recommended. Smaller camps mean personal attention for all campers! We hope to see you for summer fun with IU13 staff and our community partners.

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Summer Camps

It’s not too early to start thinking about summer camps! Here are a few offered by two Hempfield teachers.

Registration is now live for Video Game Design and Maker Camp for students currently in grades 3-8.   The Camp weeks are June 21-24 in person at Franklin and Marshall College.   Campers can register for both camps for a full day experience.

Video Game Design Camp:
“Level-Up” your learning this summer with Video Game Design Camp! Through interactive storytelling and compelling level design, video games provide entertainment and practice for problem-solving skills, hand-eye coordination, and creative thinking.  There are no prerequisites for the camp. Immersed in the study and practice of games, we will cover the creative and technical aspects of game design as well as how to use a compelling narrative to drive the direction of your game. Participants will design and program fully functional video games from start to finish with characters, levels, backgrounds, and custom features. 

Maker’s Camp
Does coding bananas to act like a music keyboard sound fun to you?  How about coding a dance dance video game to be controlled by buckets of water?  Throughout this Maker’ Camp, campers will utilize coding, circuit boards, and other materials to create and code a variety of awesome STEM projects.  Students create a variety of different projects utilizing coding and circuit boards.  No previous coding knowledge necessary!

Registration is now live at

Questions?  Email Dr. Snyderman at

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Guest Blogger: Let’s Get Serious about Play!

Meet today’s guest blogger, Grant Collins. Grant is a 2nd grader at Eshleman Elementary School and he just learned how to play the game, Quarto. Here’s what he has to share.  

Grant Collins


The goal of Quarto is to get 4 pieces in a row that are all the same. The ways the pieces can be the same are shape, color, size, and the tops (solid or with a hole). This is a strategy game with many ways to win. This game is nothing like checkers! Your opponent gives you a piece to place on the board. You place your piece and then give a piece to your opponent. You have to think about what piece you are going to give your opponent and where you place your piece on the board. 

Quarto Game board and Pieces: Picture courtesy of Grant Collins

Note from Mrs. Orihuel: Games have an important place in cultivating good strategists. Playing Quarto creates an experiential, interactive understanding of strategy. By playing games like this, students have to analyze the environment (the game board), make judgement calls, execute decisions, and reflect on the consequences! Oh, and it’s also FUN!

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Mrs. Orihuel’s Classroom Update

Elementary Grades

Third and fourth graders read the the book, The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein, and before answering discussion question, put on their philosopher lenses and approached the questions through the eyes of philosophers.

The Giving Tree Summary. The story starts with a boy and his BFF, who just happens to be a tree. Every day the boy climbs the tree, eats the tree’s apples, and sleeps in the tree’s shade, and both the boy and the tree are happy with this arrangement. But, as the boy ages, his needs change. Each time the boy visits, the tree gives him everything she can, including all her branches and her trunk. Reduced to a stump, the tree doesn’t think she has anything left to give when the boy returns once again, this time as an old man. But it turns out a stump is just what the old man needs to sit down and get a little rest. So he does, and the tree is happy.

Guided Discussion. Students pondered topics such as the nature of giving, gifts, altruism and happiness. For example, “What stage (if any) did the boy do something wrong in using the tree as he does? Why was what he did at one stage wrong, but not at a prior stage?”

Student Reflections. Finally, students had the option of drawing a picture showing what the old man could have done with the stump that would have been better than just sitting on it, writing a poem from the point of view of the tree expressing its feelings at one stage in its relationship with the boy, or writing about a gift they’d most like to give and identify who they would give the gift to.

Middle Grades

Students read Ray Bradbury’s short story, All Summer in a Day and wrote alternate endings.

All Summer in a Day Summary. A group of schoolchildren live on the planet Venus with their families. They are nine years old, and they are eagerly awaiting a momentous occasion. After 7 years of continuous rain, the scientists on Venus have predicted that the sun will come out today for a brief period of time. Out of jealously for Margot who used to live on Earth and knows what the sun is like, William and the rest of the class lock Margot in a closet. Margot was not let out until the after the sun went away and the rain returned.

Margot takes a look around. She runs outside hoping to catch even the smallest glance of what she had been waiting for. Her face gets paler. Her eyes go gray. her hair is white.  Margot crumples to the floor and she never gets back up…Until.. She is 16 in the hospital. It comes. -Colin Grade 7

Margot steps out of the closet. She talks to her teacher, telling her she was gonna take a trip home, her parents were on their way to pick her up. She sprinted outside, got in one of the emergency space ships, and took off. All her classmates ran outside and saw her blasting off. She waved goodbye, and continued on her journey to Earth. Kaylie Grade 7

Shout Out to Mrs. D’Amico!

Thank you Mrs. D’Amico, Gifted Support Teacher at Manor Middle School and Hambright, for introducing us to the game, Disruptus. Her students LOVE of the game inspired me to give it a try.

How to Play. Disruptus challenges players to think of new ways to use familiar objects or devices. During the game you roll the die, choose the appropriate card or cards, then take one of four actions: Create, Improve, Transform or Disrupt.

Students learned how to create, improve, transform, and disrupt but have not played an actual game yet. Here’s what they have to say so far:

This is different because we usually don’t have to think about solving problems and using objects differently than we already do.

Most classes you need to have only one correct answer, but for this you can have multiple answers and use different ways of thinking.

I have a routine everyday and don’t do anything differently. This helps me think outside the box.

Most of my day is just learning about things I already know, This is different because it forces me to think for myself.

This teaches us real life problem solving.

This made me dig in my mind and figure out something new. In other classes I just need to use straight up knowledge.

This is more fun and let’s me think about what I want to do instead of only having one answer.

It made me use my BIG brain to think more and to think of new ideas.

This made me think of alternate ways to accomplish a goal.

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