by Shayna M.
The Culinary Literacy Center has been cooking up summer fun for youth over the last five years through the Summer Thyme Cooks program. This past summer, the Nourishing Literacy team piloted week-long camp sessions for youth. Summer Thyme Camp was a success!
We ran three weeks of programming—one week for students between the ages of ten through twelve, one week for students between the ages of thirteen through fifteen, and one week for the children of our Free Library of Philadelphia staff colleagues, between the ages of six through eleven—with an awesome thirteen-year-old assistant who joined us during staff week!
Each week, students visited the library from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Summer Thyme Campers spent the first two-thirds of their day in the kitchen classroom with the Nourishing Literacy teachers, practicing kitchen skills, cooking together while making new friends, and preparing celebratory, summer-inspired recipes using fruits and vegetables. Students ate what they cooked for their lunch and it worked out well!
For the remainder of their day, students visited a rotating library department, spending time with our Parkway Central Library colleagues, and learning more about what the library has to offer. Thank you to our friends in Rare Books, Enrichment & Civic Engagement, One Book, Field Teen Center, Art, and Music for welcoming and hosting our youth! An extra thank you to Naquawna Letman, Culinary Literacy Center team member, for providing the Summer Thyme Camp crew with the opportunity to engage in the new program that she has developed, Exploring Music and Food Through the Senses.
Offering full-week Summer Thyme Camp sessions was meaningful to the Nourishing Literacy team and to the Culinary Literacy Center as a whole. During the school year, the Nourishing Literacy team works with a different school class each day a program is offered, allowing us to welcome as many students to our kitchen classroom as possible. Seeing the same youth every day for a week, observing the students come together as a group, and having the opportunity to work with them on skill-building over a period of five days was special and unique for our team.
Thank you so much to the Nourishing Literacy team for all of your work and care. You are so appreciated! A huge thank you to all of the students and caregivers who participated in this year’s program! We appreciated so much your time, effort, and enthusiasm. Working with you was awesome!
During the 2019/2020 school year, Nourishing Literacy is providing pre-K through high school classes with hands-on cooking programs beginning in November. Details about our schedule and how to register will be available in early October.
Until then, happy cooking, and wishing all students, teachers, and caregivers a wonderful beginning of the new school year!