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Delightful Surprises

Over the summer, I often give the children fun projects to work on for a week or so. This year I am going to creatively design work certificates on posterboard for different professions for Josiah. So every few days I will hand him his certificate, which permits him to perform in a professional capacity. His job will be to research that particular profession and then give us a report on just what his job description entails.     

For instance, the first one will be a nice plump bumblebee. On the back it will read Beekeeper Bob. We have several books on bees and beekeepers, so he will report on bees and what beekeepers do. A nice shiny fire truck will be handed to him next, with Fireman Fred written on the back with an additional note that states once he completes his assignment on finding out the responsibilities that firemen perform, I will take him to our local firehouse for a tour. Then I will hand him a letter addressed to Mailman Max. The others will include a skyscraper for Architect Ace, a planet for Astronomer Abe, a Band-Aid for Doctor Dan, a grocery sack for Grocer Gill, a barn for Farmer Frank, a hammer for Carpenter Carl, a light bulb for Electrician Ed, and a salmon for Salmon Sam (this is for a fish hatchery just in case you wondered how a salmon fit in—I did this because we have a wonderful Moody video on salmon). I will make all of these certificates very colorful and nice so they can be kept as keepsakes.     

Josiah will be told to use books, encyclopedias, or personal interviews as sources for the information he needs to retrieve. A little prize will be rewarded after each completion. Beekeeper Bob will receive a Bit-O-Honey candy (if I did not already have so many books on bees, I would give him a book), Fireman Fred a tour of a firehouse, Mailman Max special stamps, a maze book for Architect Ace, an astronomy game for Astronomer Abe, a pill bottle filled with colored candy and a book on the body for Doctor Dan, a grocery sack filled with special treats from the grocery store for Grocer Gill, a book on animals or a trip to Purina Farms for Farmer Fred, a tool for Carpenter Carl, an electrical kit for Electrician Ed, and crab legs (his favorite) for Salmon Sam.           

If we did not have so many books and videos on these professions, I would reward him with more educational books and videos. And, if we hadn’t already toured beekeepers, post offices, skyscrapers, the planetarium, hospitals, the grocery stores, farms, construction worksites, and fish hatcheries, I would make tours to each of those places a part of his reward for the completion of each report. Making research fun is a great incentive for young boys.