Rotary Club grant boosts YMCA


A grant from the Nash-Rocky Mount Rotary Club has helped the Harrison Family YMCA was able to provide new equipment for its Outdoor Learning Center.


From Contributed Reports

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Thanks to a grant from the Nash-Rocky Mount Rotary Club, the Harrison Family YMCA was able to provide new equipment for its Outdoor Learning Center.

The new equipment will help contribute to the development of children in our programming:

■ Hank drum: They produce resonant, bongy sounds that vibrate up and through a child's body.

■ Musical Fence: Kids swipe their hands across all the tubes, the tubes swing into each other, thus setting off a series of resounding, random notes that sound just like a wind chime but with much deeper sounds.

■ Wood Xylophone: It helps children understand that almost anything can make sounds, and that almost any sound can be heard as musical. If they want to "play" a tune, then they have to "discover" the right sounds that make that tune possible,all part of the discovery-oriented play and learning experience.

■ Bass Drum: Striking the drum with different objects and intensities will produce very different sounds, which makes this outdoor instrument very versatile.

■ Balance Edge: This is a slightly different balance challenge, in that boards are on edge which makes balancing an extremely difficult challenge requiring full body engagement similar to the skill and judgment needed when walking on a tight rope.

■ Wood Blocks: The blocks encourage creativity and problem solving by allowing children to experiment with different shapes, structural integrity, gravity, balance, and geometry. Playing with our Blocks helps children develop social and emotional skills, because they learn how to share, problem solve together, discuss strategy for accomplishing goals, and discuss each others' solutions. And playing with our Blocks helps build strength in children's fingers and hands, improve their eye-hand coordination and refine the fine and large motor skills required to manipulate the blocks.

■ Stepping Stumps: Children will learn balance and agility skills, learn how to handle their bodies to maintain equilibrium as they move from one to the other, and grow stronger as they roll and maneuver the stumps from place to place. They will also learn what tree rings are all about, practice math skills as they count those rings to determine the age of the tree when it was cut for them, observe how the stumps change over time and watch tiny insects make the stump their own play and living area.

■ Tree Cookies: Fun, natural element for both imaginative free play and for learning. They can be stacked, used for creating paths or patios, rolled or used as loose parts.

■ Chalk Wall: Two natural chalk walls for the children to express their artistic side

■ Cedar Amish Playhouse: Playhouse with an open design so children can enjoy all the benefits of fresh-air playtime, yet remain protected from too much sun.