Sam Crichton, Tory Cousino, and Sara Sica
South Windsor High School
3:25 PM EDT, March 11, 2013
Singing the alphabet and learning to count to 10 may seem like child's play, but it is actually part of a class offered at South Windsor High School.
The Leadership in Child Care class gives high school students the opportunity to teach preschool children everything from shapes and colors to how flowers grow. The teens who take the class are the "teachers" of the classroom. There are three "committees" that cover the basics of the classroom; environment, business and curriculum. Students in the environment committee set up the classroom and make it an inviting and fun atmosphere, whereas the business committee covers everything from when preschool starts to make the charts for the students' daily jobs. The curriculum committee plans the themes for the weeks. For most of the class’s students, the class is beneficial because it gives the high school students insight as to which career path they might want to take in the not so distant future.
Once every detail is planned from the preschool schedule to what color the door should be decorated, the children come to school. Preschool students are paired with a high school "special friend" who helps them prepare for grade school, while learning from each other.
Senior Jess Duclos believes this class has not only helped her decide on her career, but also helped her develop as leaner. “You learn more about yourself and what you want to do. The kids learn from you, and are able to go off to bigger and better things like kindergarten.” She said.
Teacher, Mrs. Wolff has a very hands-off approach when it comes to teaching her class. “I want students to do their teaching and make some mistakes because that is sometimes the best way to learn”, she says.
The students learn a great deal while being part of the class, and they also earn college credits. A few years ago, one of the guidance counselors at South Windsor High School approached Mrs. Wolff about the opportunity to articulate her program with a local college program and, and she immediately jumped on that opportunity. Now, when the high school students graduate and go to college, they will have transferable college credit.
The high school students love the class, and the preschoolers enjoy it as well. "Activities are my favorite part of preschool" says Aiden Saada, a current preschool student.
The child care class at South Windsor High School helps students both young and old learn new things about themselves to develop and understand career opportunities.