Keeping Minds Active during the Summer Months
Posted on August 7, 2012
Parents recognize the importance of children reading in the summer.
Summer enrichment, a supervised program for children that’s held in local schools during July and August, provides academic activities that spark imagination and provide fun for children in grades 1 through 6. Primarily known as the Summer Enrichment Program, the project keeps minds actively involved in reading, math, science, and more. Recently at the Brook Avenue Elementary School in Bay Shore, students in the Eastern Suffolk BOCES/ExtraEdge Learning classrooms were enthusiastic.
Lego fourth graders Tatum Schlicht, Jordan Mosher, and Mia Desimone (above) show off their Lego creation. “I was here last year,” said Tatum, “and I really liked it. That’s why I’m back.”
In an era when many parents are concerned about the lack of academic stimulation during the summer, the enrichment program provides hands-on activities with a specific curriculum. For example, fractions and science were being reviewed as students learned how to make candy. In the Lego class, students were building miniature machinery while learning about interlocking gears. Certified teacher Bryan Scharf commented, “If the children weren’t here, they’d be home playing videos. Here, they take things apart and learn how they move. Today we’re working on propulsion.”
Candy-making students Izayah Minaya and Jack Zizis (above) display the pan of caramel they made.
In the smaller-grouped Guided Reading Instruction classes, every child is benchmarked and placed with others on similar reading levels. Teachers coordinate Book Talk, Read Silently, and Read Aloud sessions and students write on Smart boards, sound out new words, and review vocabulary. Sixth grader Catherine Reilly told a visitor, “My reading is better and I’ve made new friends. This is a lot better than sitting home all day.”
Teacher Masina Longo (above) reports, “It’s crucial that children continue to read and it excites me that they’re excited to be reading in the summer.”
In classes where puppets were made, teacher Erica Cardillo was discussing The Princess and the Frog. Afterwards, the children presented the play. “Learning theatre and stepping out of their comfort zone are important parts of growing up,” she said.
Certified teacher Michelle Stowers explained, “Our programs are academic. We monitor the children’s progress so parents can see the gains. These parents want their children to be prepared for the reopening of school in September.”
Student Emily Passaro (above) shows her puppet to Summer Enrichment Program Director Michelle Stowers at the Brook Avenue School, Bay Shore.
ExtraEdge Learning, developed by educators Robert and Denise DelRosso, provides hands-on educational experiences that encourage students to expand their thinking. The 2012 Summer Enrichment Programs are in two Bay Shore schools, as well as in the Bayport-Blue Point and Comsewogue UFSDs.