The monthly Make it Monday program for kids at at the Mullica Hill library enables kids to make crafts that emphasize the facility’s STEAM program.
STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) is taught by the library’s Head of Youth Services Stephanie Smith, who shows children how to apply it in the library program and daily life.
“The purpose of this program is to educate children while making the learning process fun,” she said. “And if they can make connections to real-life experiences, that’s even better. Science and math, while important in everyday life, are not always easy or exciting.
“When you do something you enjoy, you remember it and want to learn more,” Smith added. “So we take the concepts they learn in school and make it fun. And if children want to learn more about space or chemistry, we have plenty of library books to provide them.”
The next Make it Monday will take place on Monday, Dec. 11, at 4:30 p.m. Kids will make edible Oreo ornaments for Christmas.
“We are combining science, art and math to make these,” Smith explained. “We’ll observe a solid turn into a liquid when heat is applied, and practice patterns and spatial reasoning to brainstorm the design and use our creativity to decorate the cookie.
“The best part is that children don’t even know they’re practicing these skills, because they’re having too much fun decorating a yummy treat.”
Recent Make it Monday crafts included edible bacteria, Shrinky Dink keychains, T-shirt pillows and color changing lemonade.
The program is free but requires registration. The Dec. 11 event is full, but there are still openings for the next one on Monday, Jan. 29, at 4:30 p.m. Register on the Gloucester County Library System website with an attendee’s name, email and phone number. No library card is necessary and participants do not have to be Mullica Hill residents.
According to Smith, Make it Monday has become one of the library’s most popular programs for school-age children.
“I believe our community enjoys not only this program, but all GCLS programs, because they are educational, fun and free,” she noted. “With inflation rising and the negative academic effects from the pandemic, the Make it Monday program helps families complement their child’s education at no cost.”