Eau Claire was BOOMING this past Friday as our Grade 6’s congregated on the third floor to celebrate the past 10 months we’ve spent together.
What a truly amazing year we’ve had! Between impromptu gaga ball face-offs, nutrition workshops, tournaments, dance parties, Lego sessions, and cooking classes, it seems we have done it all at the YMCA! This past Friday, we got all of our branches together for our Grade 6 Year End Celebration, and it was incredible! Even though we were rained out of our Riveredge site, we still managed to collect a whopping total of 122 grade 6 students under the Eau Claire roof!
After enjoying some pizza and veggies, we split off into groups and participated in a variety of different stations. All our grade sixes got to try a little bit of everything; from Lego, to Kin ball and team building, to the first ever YMCA dance-rap-karaoke party!
We even got to meet Harvey the Hound and former Flames defenceman, Rhett Warrener!
The best part was having all of our members come together and experience something new with their fellow branches. All of us were excited to be a part of something so different – and we ensured that everyone in the building knew it! We are the first cohort of Calgary YMCA’s Grade 6 members, and we made sure to sign this school year off with a bang!
Summer is just around the corner and we are all bustling with the exciting opportunities that await us! To find out more information on what your branch is doing this summer, take a look at our Activity Page or contact your Youth Coordinator!
Thanks again to all of our lovely grade 6 members who have made this year at the YMCA one of our most memorable! And thank you to all of our incredibly dedicated staff and volunteers as well as the Calgary Flames Foundation for Life for making this year happen! Without all of us – staff, members, and supporters alike – this year’s success would not have been possible!
Calling all Grade 6 Members!!
Join us on June 12th from 5:00-8:00pm for a free year end celebration at YMCA Camp Riveredge! We will be offering free food, games, and activities for all of our grade 6 members to celebrate the end of their grade 6 year.
All are welcome to attend this fun, free event! Each branch will be offering transportation to and from Riveredge on the day of the event. We will be meeting at Eau Claire at 4:30 for the bus.
Activities for our celebration will include:
- Gaga Ball
- Meet and Greet with Harvey the Hound
- BBQ Dinner
- Low Ropes Course
- Challenge Course
- Wide Games
Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Sarah Thornton at 403-781-1685. We hope to see you all there!
On Wednesday, May 13 from 6-8pm Saddletowne YMCA will host a workshop called Fundamentals of Healthy Eating.
This workshop will offer very practical information with ideas, strategies and recipes that you can take home and put to use right away. Our presenter Cheryl Strachan, a registered dietitian, offers a very down to earth perspective that covers not only the ‘what & why’ but the ‘how’ of creating healthy eating habits with plenty of examples along the way and answers to all of the commonly asked questions & concerns.
Click this link to sneak-a-peak:
Register early by calling 403-237-2393 and quoting course# 102733.
Wednesday, May 13, 2015 | 6-8pm
Saddletowne YMCA, Studio A
Join us at the Eau Claire YMCA as we embark on a new culinary adventure! Participants from the ages of 10-13 are welcomed to register for this class and enjoy the art of cooking!
Participants will get to experience the joy of substituting ingredients in their recipe, learning knife skills, practicing reading recipes and labels, and learning to make healthy decisions when it comes to ingredients.
Program runs every Wednesday from 6:00-7:30pm and begins on May 6th. If you are interested in registering for this program, please click here to download a registration form and return it to Eau Claire.
Looking for an exciting Friday Night Activity? Why not register for our Grade 6 Dodgeball Tournament in February!
Teams of 6 will compete against each-other in 3 minute rounds to battle for the Ultimate Title. Participants are welcome to sign up as a team or as individuals. The winning team will take home the blue ribbons as well as the first place prize (to be determined). Second and third place teams will also be awarded.
All participants will receive a participation acknowledgement.
The tournament will run from 6:00-8:00 PM on Friday, February 20th. Four different, yet fast-paced variations of dodgeball will be played throughout the night. Instructions will be explained on the day of the tournament but are also distributed with your sign-up package.
If you or your team wants to practice, or is a bit shy, have no fear! We will also be hosting a practice night on Tuesday, February 17th during our regular Grade 6 Sports Drop-In time (6:00-7:00 PM).
If you are interested in joining us for this challenge, you can click here to download our dodgeball registration form and rules. Be sure to drop by Eau Claire to hand in your form and register. Alternatively, you can contact Sarah Thornton, youth Coordinator at 403-781-1685 or via e-mail at email@example.com for more information.
Bring your game face and we will see you there!
Exciting New Programs at Eau Claire!
Are you looking for exciting new ways to get your child involved at the Y? We have so many options to choose from. Check out some of our new opportunities!
Cookie Monsters | Mon 2:00-3:00pm | Jan 8-March 24 | M $121 | NM $143 | Code: 101888
Let your children express themselves through food preparation and selection, nutrition and cooking. They will learn, create and explore using quick, easy recipes. The best part is they get to eat what they make! Child must be toilet trained to attend this class.
Parent & Tot Yoga | Thurs 9:30-10:15am | Jan 15-March 19 | M $85 | NM $127 | Code: 101891
Discover with your toddler the joys of yoga through dance, play and stories. Introducing from an early age the ideas of breath and relaxation, this class will interwove these concepts through different journeys.
Culinary Kids | Wed 6:00-7:00pm | Jan 14-Feb 18| M $72 | NM $90 | Code: 101889
Allow your child the opportunity to explore the art of cooking! They will learn to create their own nutritious snacks and meals using quick, easy recipes. The best part is they get to eat what they make! We will cover basic kitchen and appliance safety, knife skills, measuring, mixing and adapting recipes to different ingredients.
Are you looking for a creative way to spend your time? Are you interested in expressing yourself through art? Our youth arts and crafts programs provide you with opportunities to explore and discover your inner artist. We will use many different media and supplies to give opportunities to experience something new!
Contributed by Michelle Whitney
My daughter, Emilia, started kindergarten this September. It was a bitter sweet moment. She has been a cherished part of the Eau Claire daycare and we both miss the daycare that was her second home. Both of us started our day warmly greeted by staff and made to feel like we were welcomed and belonged.
Various stations would greet the children; some days it was a dress up, circus, restaurant or a veterinary clinic. Other days the children would get their bathing suits on for swimming lessons and pool play time. Children participate in outdoor activities either on a field trip or on the outdoor play structure. My daughter loved field trip days – she travelled to the zoo, Home Depot, pet stores, the library and even a farm! Tanya, her teacher, loves the park and Emilia would regale me with the great adventures they had.
Below freezing days would see the children upstairs in the YMCA gym participating in games and performing tumbling activities. Plus 15 adventures ensured everyone stayed warm but had the opportunity to get moving.
I loved the open door policy – I would travel upstairs and have lunch with my daughter and her friends and teachers. Communal meals and snacks were such an important part of socializing.
The daycare follows the YMCA Playing to Learn philosophy which, as an educator, I find to be an effective way to engage and educate children. Children would express an interest in an activity and the rest of the week would be centred on that activity. For example, the children were interested in babies. Tanya brought in baby food for the children to taste test, which proved to be quite funny. The children studied a baby’s actions to determine it’s needs, learned about human development and about safety. This activity also taught the children about empathy.
My daughter was very well prepared for kindergarten. Children thrive on structure and stable environments. She takes pride in knowing that it is appropriate to put your hand up if you would like a turn speaking in a group. She understands the importance of ‘indoor’ and ‘outdoor’ voices. She can write her name, knows her alphabet and can count to twenty. Fine and gross motor skills were practiced at the YMCA through a range of play-based activities. She was allowed to freely express her imagination and felt safe in taking risks. Through physical activity she has become agile and confident.
I would highly recommend the Eau Claire YMCA centre to any parent. In fact, I was responsible for referring a parent whose child starts next month. The staff are well trained and professional but are also warm and empathetic. They do not hesitate to smother my daughter with hugs when they see her come back for a visit. I was confident that if she scraped her knee she would be gently snuggled and her hair stroked until she felt better. After all, as a parent this is all we want for our child – to know that they are loved.
YMCA Calgary operates licensed Child Development Centres in our Eau Claire, Saddletowne and Shawnessy locations. We are preparing to expand our impact with new centres in YMCA facilities in Quarry Park, Rocky Ridge, and Seton. These amazing new spaces will help us support young children to belong, grow and thrive!
- Wake up;
- Eat breakfast;
- Go to school;
- Come home;
- Have a snack;
- Do some homework;
- Go to a program;
- Have dinner out;
- Go to another program;
- Do chores;
- Do more homework;
- Have a bath;
- Go to bed.
The schedule for tomorrow:
- See above schedule.
Kids these days all seem to have schedules similar to the one above. To go along with it are the demands of getting good grades, pressure from family and peers, and just growing up in general. There are unwritten rules that kids need to learn and understand. Adults are not the only ones with a lot going on these days. In this time of over-scheduling, kids need to schedule in some un-scheduled time!
Here are some ways that kids can de-stress through the practice of un-scheduling:
Exercise: Run, walk, kick a ball, punch a punching bag. There are so many things that help kids release the built up frustrations. Just 20 minutes can provide up to 12 hours of improved mood. Getting active has so many benefits for calming a busy mind.
Write, Colour or Draw: Writing or drawing about what is bothering them is a great release and easy way to get rid of frustrations. Getting it onto paper gets it out of the mind.
Listen to Music: Dance and jam out with the music playing. There is just something calming about rocking out to your favourite tune.
Build or Create Something: The process of making something unique and new from scratch creates a great way to relax. There is also something that can be used when it is done too.
Socialize and Laugh: Spending time with friends and family who give a sense of belonging, purpose and fun may provide all the stress relief needed. Not to mention a good chuckle relieves the built up tension.
Eat Well and Get a Good Night Sleep: Healthy eating and good sleep patterns are fundamental of living a well balanced life in a positive way. Things just seem that much better with a healthy body.
Go Outside: The outdoors has a great calming effect. Get back to nature, see the sun, explore a park, play in the leaves or snow… Just get up and go. (October 29, is “Take Me Outside Day“)
The most important thing is to make a schedule change by finding something that kids enjoy and to just go and do it!
We want to hear about what you do to help kids de-stress through un-scheduling. Share your stories on the YMCA Facebook page or on Twitter.
In celebration of the 2014 YMCA Peace Week, Eau Claire YMCA will be hosting Yoga for Peace on Wednesday November 19th from 10:30 – 11:15 and at 12:50 – 1:30.
YMCA Peace Week is unique to Canada. It originated in 1984 when YMCA Canada decided to add an entire week of peace related activities to follow Peace Day. This year, we will be celebrating our 30th year! Why yoga? Yoga is an innately peaceful activity with the goal of encompassing the overall essence of peace. Please come and join instructors Gary & Pam and be a part of this national celebration!
Many people are aware of the health benefits of exercise, but did you know that health and wellness means much more than one hour a day at the gym? If you dutifully put in your hour of exercise, but spend the other 23 hours of your day sitting, you are still considered to have a sedentary lifestyle with all of the risk factors that entails. See the following link for details: Sedentary Behaviour Risks
If you have a sedentary occupation, how can you overcome this challenge? Try getting up from your desk and walking around the office for 5 or 10 minutes every hour or two. You may feel that you’re too busy to add this into your day, however, you will likely find that these mini-breaks increase your productivity when you return to your desk. Walk to a co-worker’s desk to ask a question, rather than phoning or emailing. Even standing up at your desk and stretching once in a while will be helpful. If you are having a small meeting with just two or three people, suggest a walking meeting to your colleagues. Pedometers are an excellent way to track your activity over a day to ensure that you get in your minimum number of steps each day.
Stay-at-home parents have a great opportunity for activity; dance with your children, play tag, go for a walk to the park and push them on the swing. Not only will you enhance your own health with activity, you will set a great example for your kids and perhaps even deepen your parent-child bond!
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