Simon says chase your tail. Simon
says hop like a bunny. Simon says stand like a flamingo. Simon says party like
This was one of five sections
included in the Combined Arms Research Library’s animal-themed activity course
drawn in chalk on the sidewalk outside the library.
The activity course was CARL’s
contribution to the Combined Arms Center Window Walk Wednesdays “Furry Friends”
theme April 15.
“I originally wanted to make
decorations to put out on the library windows and have chalk activities to
encourage people to walk by the library, but all of our windows are tinted, and
there aren’t a ton of windows in areas easy to walk by, so I embraced the chalk
idea,” said Sierra Hochstatter, CARL circulation library technician. “I used
Pinterest to get some ideas on how to make interactive chalk designs.
“It is an interactive course where
participants can exercise their bodies and minds. Imagination is very important
for these activities,” she said. “Since we have been unable to host events
inside the library, we have been looking for ways to connect with our community
in other ways.”
The course begins by the book/audio-video
drop box near Smith Lake. Along the route, participants make animal sounds
corresponding with the animals drawn; play Simon Says; get across the
“alligator-infested river” by walking across logs and hopping on lily pads and
rocks without stepping on turtles; move like different animals including
sloths, fish and penguins; and rest and listen to the sounds of nature.
“This is meant to be a fun outing.
If participants don’t want to do a part of the course, it is not a big deal. It
can also be educational,” Hochstatter said. “We are asking participants to
identify animals, noises and actions. Parents can supplement the course by
asking questions that dig deeper than just what is drawn on the path…to build
critical thinking skills.
“My hope is that people will just
have a lot of fun getting out of the house,” she said. “CARL has always been a
place where our patrons go to escape, learn and have fun. This obstacle course
will hopefully provide all of these as well.”
Sections of the activity course
are spaced six feet apart so multiple families can participate at the same time
while practicing social distancing. Use of face coverings is advised when
participating in the course.
“If weather permits, we want to do
a course every week for Window Walk Wednesdays,” Hochstatter said. “I have a
lot more ideas to make future courses.”