On Sunday the 18th of May, the SOAPkidz participated in the Energy Expo in the form of having fun activities for the kids who arrived at the Expo. I was one of more than 30 volunteers that showed up, and did not know quite what to expect. The base stations were already set-up and standing by for action – Peanut Power; Water Power; Magnet Power, and many more. While we waited for the kids to arrive, we quickly moved through the Expo and visited all the stalls to gather info on much needed energy saving strategies.
As the kids arrived, we divided them into groups and let them rotate, accompanied by a group volunteer, between the bases. They started at “Rock & Junk”, making and decorating their own musical instruments from recycled materials. Soon every kid was smiling eagerly with a hammer, a few bottle caps and nails in hand. One boy apparently decided to rather decorate himself and was walking around, covered in stickers, constantly “loosing” his group leader, to the amusement of the rest of us.
From there they moved on to the “Power Composer” section, which was nicely tucked away in the beautiful garden. Steve had each group compose their own song about the environment and then they all performed it, using their own instruments. From the smallest 3 year old to the oldest teenagers were rattling and banging their instruments to the beat of Steve’s guitar, and shaking up the peaceful neighbourhood a bit.
After that the teams rotated to the other bases where they learnt about sustainable and non-sustainable energy and took part in experiments involving the potential energy in water, peanuts and how an electromagnet can be made. The last game was called “Power Snap”, and the kids had to find matching “energy” cards, relying on memory. This soon had them showing their competitive spirit, as they couldn’t wait their turn, to match up the cards that they could remember.
Before leaving, each kid received a certificate, for taking part and completing the activities. Even though I don’t think some of the smallest kids knew what it was all about, they were still rattling their instruments as they got into their parents’ cars.
Thank you to all of the volunteers who have helped to make this day possible. I have learnt a few new things myself about energy, as I’m sure most of us have. Thank you also to St. Martin’s-in-the-Veldt, who invited us to participate.