Philadelphia, PA - Kirby's Mill Elementary School on March 27th, the 5 elementary schools located in Medford Township began the process of introducing incoming Kindergartners to their future classmates and teachers.
Teachers from The Future Kinders at Chariville, Allen School, Taunton Forge, Cranberry Pines, and Kirby's Mill came together for a fun-filled night of arts and crafts for all 2018-2019 first-time students. The orientation night's theme was “Race For Kindergarten 2018,” and the highlight of the night for children and parents in attendance were two very real race cars.
According to Dr. Beth Asbury, who is an Administrator in the Ciriculum Department of Medford Township, “This is one of three events that are held to introduce the parents and incoming students to how the school year will be, to fellow students, and to their future teachers.”
It's a fun way to have children and teachers meet one another, and this is the second year they have had real race cars for the kids to sit in and take pictures with too. “The children are excited to see the race cars. They go through the school to do arts and crafts and then take pictures with the race cars,” stated Dr. Beth Asbury.
It was fun to observe all the parents who joyfully watched and helped their little ones at each Pit Stop. There were 5 Pit Stops in total where the children engaged in educational arts and crafts, games, or ran through an obstacle course. For example, in the math room they were given a set of flash cards; one set had a number (from 1 to 10), and the other set had the equivalent of pictures on it.
Traversing an obstacle course set up in the gymnasium was another Pit Stop created to prepare these future bright minds for the upcoming school year. Using listening skills and following directions, they had to jump like a frog, crawl like an alligator, hop like a bunny, crawl like a crab, walk like a bear, and slither like a snake through to the finish line.
There are 3 of these orientations in total that happen prior to the upcoming school year, the next one to happen will be a Kindergarten Round-Up, where the parents bring their soon-to-be Kindergartners to their home school to perform activities too. These orientations also act as “Kindergarten screenings that gives the schools information and also opens the opportunity for children who might need a little extra before Kindergarten starts, with an offering of an invitational summer program,” explained Kari Pollock, an Allen School teacher.
I don't know if all schools have a program like this, but I think it is a wonderful idea to prepare first-time students for what their kindergarten year will be like. And being exposed to the school, the large hallways, and the other students will aide in making first-day jitters a little less intimidating.