(This video & more info about Caine's Aracade available at www.cainesarcade.com)
Some years ago, in my Social Work days, I was introduced to Caine's Arcade- a video about a then 9-year-old boy who spent his summer hanging at his Dad's used auto part store. Like any kid spending his summer with "nothing to do"- Caine got creative... he created a huge arcade out of stuff he found at his Dad's store. Pretty creative, indeed.
I was blown away by this kid's determination, innovation, and spirit! To take the simplest items- what many would consider to be "junk"- and turn it into something AWESOME.
When Nirvan, the director of the movie, came to visit the store, he was Caine's first customer. And from there- word got out & history was made.
The Cardboard Revolution had started and I was beyond inspired.
blended perfectly with Project-Based Learning (PBL). I immediately began brainstorming how to bring this into Camp and then it occurred to me how it PBL is all about child-centered, experiential learning- where the campers ideas and interests take the lead. Staff are there to guide and facilitate- helping to point children to think of the questions they could be asking, while still really allowing the kids to be the main leaders and producers. In PBL, child's voice & choice is at the center & we know at camp how using that as our philosophy only makes the kids even more engaged.
At Camp Wildfolk, our session themes guide large, group projects that campers work on throughout the two weeks. We introduce the topic, and then the campers take the idea and run with them.
Their interpretation and ideas for how to present their piece for the Jubilee can range from performances, interactive experiences, or most-often, diorama-style. They usually involve a great deal of upcylcing, innovative reinterpretation of uses for common items, teamwork, creativity, and a lot of hard work. They always turn out amazing, unique, and completely special.
I can't wait to see how our camper-driven projects turn out this summer. One of our session themes during Session 2 is "Wildfolk Game World" which I anticipate will turn into our own epic, kid-created arcade in the spirit of Caine's Arcade.
You can read more about Project-Based Learning and our approach here.