Remember last week when we were studying Ireland for Family Home Evening? OK, it was St. Patrick's Day too, but it was also the beginning of earning the International Activities Patch for Sport. This is actually one of my favorite cub scout patches to earn because it gives me an excuse to teach the kids about different cultures.
When the Gym Rat was a cub scout, we chose the first option of immersing ourselves in one culture. My grandma had a friend from Japan and she stayed with us and cooked us real sushi and taught us all about Japan. We thought that was super-fun although none of the kids liked sushi.
Then when it was the Dog Walker's turn, our Japanese friend had moved to the east coast, so we had to do the second option which is to plan 4 weeks of international activities. We could either immerse ourselves in one culture of choose 4 different ones. We decided to go for 4 different ones and the kids loved it! The format works great for a month of Family Home Evenings.
So when it came time for Sport's turn, we decided to do the same thing. Last week we had a great time with Ireland, and this week we decided to learn a little about China. My sweetie didn't have time to cook a fabulous meal for us and I was also out with Prima Donna (getting approval on her Gold Award project!) until after 7:00, so we budgeted and planned to do Chinese take-out. It wasn't really authentic, but it was the best we could do given the circumstances.
You can only imagine how excited the kids were about that! We eat out so rarely and we almost NEVER bring food home like that and if we do it is generally pizza, so this was quite a treat for them. After we ate dinner and they all practiced with their chopsticks (Curly figured out how to simply stab the sesame chicken with one of his sticks and eat it like a skewer...whatever works, I guess!), we headed for the living room to learn a little more about Chinese culture.
Prima Donna shared a synopsis of China's history, then I told how they had a contest for their flag and what all the parts of it mean. Princess read a Chinese version of Cinderella and then we made fans out of large pieces of paper.
After our craft it was time for games. The first one was a silly game of strength and cooperation and we figured out that not everyone can do it. Crafty and Princess were the only ones to do it successfully. The idea was to link arms while standing back to back and then to sit down on the floor. Then without unlocking arms, they had to stand up together. They managed it multiple times, but none of the other pairs of kids could get it to happen. It was pretty fun though.
Then we played a game similar to marbles where the kids each rolled a quarter down the wall and then the one that landed furthest from the wall got to be tossed at the other coins. If the owner hit one, then he got to keep that coin. We weren't any good at that one either.
Finally it was time for treats. Princess had put together some Chinese Almond cookies. They were definitely a hit!
All in all, it turned out to be fun and I think the kids learned a few things too. I think we will choose Mexico for our last country, but I"m still looking for suggestions for next week. Anybody got any good ideas?