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Ely-Chapman Education Foundation summer camp begins

Updated: Jun. 7, 2021 at 7:42 PM EDT
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MARIETTA, Ohio (WTAP) - The Ely-Chapman summer camp is returning after many restrictions were placed last year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

And it has the facility’s staff ecstatic for kids being back.

“This is a wonderful experience,” says the center’s executive director, Lori Ullmann. “Some of us are a little more tired today on our first day of camp. But we are having a great time. It’s wonderful to feel the building come alive with all the kids.”

Some of the staff includes first-time teachers getting a chance to educate their own group of children.

“Oh my gosh. Today meeting some of them, I still mix up their names, but like I’ve had kids run by me, ‘I love you,’ already. And it’s like, I’ve known you for six hours. And so, to know that they can already have that bond with you, it’s so innocent and it’s so sweet. And they make you love what you do and everything,” says first grade teacher, Carly Kernodle.

Teachers at Ely-Chapman have scheduled themes each week to encourage creativity.

Especially in their S.T.E.A.M. Educational approach.

The first week’s theme is about bugs.

Ullmann says, “So, for technology on Friday for example, we are going to be talking about ants and how they tunnel. And how they’re able to get it so that it doesn’t collapse on them. And how that translates into other opportunities, other real-life things. How do we learn from nature?”

Officials at the center say that it is this approach that helps their children stay engaged during summer camp.

“We want to make sure that every kid knows that this is a safe space to be themselves. Be smart, learn something new, take a chance. Don’t ever feel like you’re less than anybody else,” says Ullmann.

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