Remember these cars I made out of recycled materials? The day after I posted that blog post, my friend Christina called me on the phone, to ask the finer details of making the cars. Apparently, she volunteers once a week at her local Community Centre in a programme by National Library Board called kidsREAD. The objective of the programme is to cultivate children's interest in reading. In the one hour session for children between age 4 and 8 from low-income families, volunteers would read a book and conduct an activity with the children. Christina was interested to have the kidsREAD children make a car, as the activity for one of the sessions that she would be leading.
We took approximately three weeks to prepare. We had to collect all the materials required (the bottles, bottle caps, straws and satay sticks) and prepare the materials. As the children were young, we decided to do the cutting for them: using penknife to cut the holes in the bottles, poking holes in the wheels and cutting the grooves on the satay sticks (refer to this other post for more details on how to make the car). The main problem was collecting such a large number of bottle caps in such a short span of time. Christina's friend came through for her and collected hundreds of bottle caps for her, after seeing her plea for help on her Facebook wall.
Christina read to the kids, the book "Why Should I Protect Nature" by Gen Green, illustrated by Mike Gordon. The book teaches children that they can protect nature too. One way is to reuse and recycle. She then brought out the cars I made to show them the end result of what they were trying to achieve that night - a toy car made out of 'trash'.
The kids were all excited and keen to get started on making their car. With help from the adult volunteers, hubbs and I, everyone managed to have their car made. The kids excitedly took them to the floor to race the cars against each other's car.
It was very satisfying seeing all the kids having fun with the cars. The adult volunteers were all very amazed with the craft as well, and one of the ladies even asked me if I conducted lessons to teach people how to make toys out of recycled materials.
Kudos to Christina and her group of volunteers too, for volunteering their precious free time with these children from low-income families. We hope that this kidsREAD programme really does achieve its objective of getting the kids interested in reading. Thanks to all who helped us collect the materials too!
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