Our recent FRG meeting was focused on Superheroes. We started with an Italian Night potluck (which was delicious!) and watched a short slide show featuring our heroes in Iraq. The kids always love getting a glimpse of the Soldiers before they head off to their corner of the room for fun kid stuff.
While the adults heard a report from downrange, listened to a guest speaker, asked questions, and met in their battery/company FRG groups, the kids were having some superhero fun.
After eating, the kids created a background on construction paper for their paper hero (already on the tables). They added scenery and taped their super hero on the page. We actually found a superhero bulletin board set at a local teachers' store with some cut outs of superheroes to use.
The volunteer leader then asked the kids what heroes do. They save people, they get the bad guys, and they protect us all came out in the discussion. It was the perfect lead-in to read Hero Dad by Melinda Hardin. This book compares super heroes to US Soldiers! One line from the book reads, "He doesn't wear rocket-propelled boots -- he wears Army boots!" One of the last lines, especially meaningful for our kids whose parent is deployed, reads, "Sometimes he has to go away for long trips, but that's what superheroes have to do."
After reading the book, one of our Soldier heroes demonstrated his protective gear. The kids really seemed to enjoy seeing the uniforms like their own Soldiers wear and loved hearing about the safety and abilities the different pieces offered.
Next, the kids colored their own superhero masks and each received a superhero cape! A wonderful volunteer cut simple capes from fabric and added a velcro tab for closure. The kids loved them and enjoyed using their superhero powers.
We then created "Hero" banners to send to our Soldiers downrange. We previously asked Families to bring a photo of their Soldier and Family to share. We passed out some paper 'speech bubbles' for Families to write their message on, then taped these onto the butcher-paper banners with the photos ... superhero comic book style. A border of ACU-patterned duct tape completed the banners and added some stability to them to alleviate tearing.
A copy of the movie "The Incredibles" was playing for the kids while parents were preparing to leave and it worked out very well keeping our littlest heroes entertained while the meeting wrapped up. We also made sure every unit spouse left with a Superhero magnet, reminding them of their very own super powers.
|Our Soldiers' wives are heroes, too, and went home with a magnet to remind them of their super powers.|
|This FRG Meeting started with a Super Italian Night Potluck dinner. A favorite for kids AND adults!|
|Kids colored a Super Hero background for their paper hero then decorated their own Super Hero masks. Here, kids listen to the book Hero Dad.|
|After hearing the book (that compared Super Hero traits to our Soldier heroes), one of our unit Soldiers showed off some of his 'super' Army gear. The kids loved this.|
|Dragon capes for the younger boys.|
|Pink camo for the girls|
|And 'dragon flames' for the bigger boys.|
|Here are all of our SUPER hero kids!|
|Two of our fabulous FRG Leaders with their "Hero" banner, complete with photos and speech bubbles.|
Check out all of the Super Hero photos on the unit's Facebook page.
For more Superhero ideas, check out this Superhero Pinterest Board.
For a peek at the meeting's agenda, see the unit's SlideShare page.