Top 5 activity lunches: Engaging students in fun

New to the library this year are the activity lunches that happen every Wednesday. Set up and run by librarian Anne Jones and assistant librarian Jane Ray, the goal for each Wednesday is to have a space where students can have fun and relieve some stress and energy. Based on a survey conducted by the McNicholas Milestone, students rated the top 5 activity lunches from this year.

  1. Mandala Coloring

A Mandala is an intricate design that usually begins as a circle and then expands to a collection of symbols, forms and shapes. Jones and Ray first started with small mandalas to color and after they saw the popularity, they printed off giant ones. One giant Mandala was put on each of the 5 tables. “I liked how it brought the community together,” Jones said. “One person would start it and then somebody else would finish it.”

  1. Dot-to-dot

The dot-to-dots ranged from wonders of the world to famous icons. “I wasn’t sure how popular it would be but I ended up printing over 100 of them the first day,” Jones said. “The dot-to-dot was a very fun and relaxing way to spend lunch time!” Said Senior Madison Marcum.

  1. Button Making

The Button making machine was first brought to McNick from the Mt. Washington Teen Library. “We had partnered with the Mt. Washington Teen Library and one day the teen librarian brought a button maker,” Jones said. The button maker was such a hit with students that Jones purchased one. Students can put their pictures,  magazine cutouts, or drawings on a button that was provided to them by the library.

  1. Ping-Pong

The idea for this fun activity came to Jones late one night. “I was just sitting in my office one night, wondering what to do for activity lunch and I was looking at the tables and thought; ‘what if those were ping pong tables?’” Jones said. Five courts were set up on the library tables and students were playing ping-pong until Ray closed the library at 5 p.m. that night.

  1. Stress Balls

This activity was the top favorite among students. The counselors pitched the idea to partner with the library to do stress-relieving activities with students once a month and interact with students outside of the office. The stress balls were made by filling balloons with  . The Orbeez start as small beads and after put you put them in water, they turn into gel-like balls. The activity was such a hit that they ran out of Orbeez before the end of A Lunch and had to do the activity again that Friday.

Students assemble string art during one of the Wednesday activity lunches in the library. Stress balls, ping pong, button making, dot-to-dot and the mandala coloring were the top activity lunches among students.

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