They've been cramming in the pool-time, the bike-rides and as much laziness as a lazy afternoon will allow before they trudge into the fluorescent halls of Trigg County schools on Aug. 8.
Last week, however, 26 children committed themselves to what will largely be a focus of their next 10 months - reading, thanks to Genesis Express' Summer Reading Camp.
Camp volunteers did their fair share of cramming, also, helping the children improve their reading abilities, warning them of the dangers posed by drugs, tobacco and alcohol and emphasizing the importance of behavior and good character.
But also - it is still summer, after all - volunteers crammed in fun.
Thursday the youngest children used watercolors to make a map leading each other to hidden treasure.
Volunteers had a hard time getting Vessie Bingham, 8, to “age” her map by swirling purple paint - her favorite color - all over the page. Vessie was content to let her friends imagine the map was old, neatly drawing the outlines of purple clouds, instead.
One table over a group of about eight third-to-fifth graders were engaged in a conversation about drugs and alcohol, after which they wrote their thoughts in a journal they kept during the camp.
Audrianna Vinson, 10, said the most important thing she'd learned in the camp was to “be nice to other people.”
Theresa Wilson, a Trigg County Middle School teacher, has volunteered at the camp since its inception in 1996.
“The kids keep me coming back,” she said.
To arm the children against peer pressure and those who dismiss the importance of an education, Wilson stresses to the kids the need to “take care of your self.”
For the rest of this story, please see this week's edition of The Cadiz Record