Eight years ago the Thrive by Five program, which provides activities to help the children in the Riverside community, ages 3-5, prepare for kindergarten, was started at Riverside School District.
“It is so much fun to help the children learn. I enjoy watching the ‘aha’ moments when they have mastered learning,”said Roxanne Robertson, who has been an instructor in the program since its inception.
With all the activities she provides the children, having fun with learning is her priority.
“Roxanne provides much joy and laughter in the preschool room,” said Program Director Janet
“The parents are so supportive to reinforce the learning that we are doing at school,” Robertson added. “They are great.”
High school students have opportunities to assist Robertson in the program. Students receive .50 credit per semester for their participation.
Freshmen Jada and Taylor, who both want to do work in child development careers when they are finished with high school, are helping during one of their class periods.
“It is fun to watch the children interact with each other,”said Taylor.
Jada said her favorite time with the children is “Center Time,”when they do hands-on learning through crafts, pictures and projects.
Each day the Riverside preschool program focuses on five domains: Physical Health, Well-Being and Motor Development, Social and Emotional Development, Approaches Towards Learning, Cognition and General Knowledge and Language, and Communication and Learning. Each session is two hours in length at the cost of $5 per session.
Class enrollment is limited to eight students per session, offering sessions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Children must be potty-trained prior to enrollment.
Parents are encouraged to read to their children at home, as the more a child is read to, the better his or her reading comprehension once they enter grade school. Parents receive information about what their child learned at school, so they can reinforce that learning at home.
The children enjoy field trips to the fire station, the dental office and other areas of interest. They participate in seasonal activities and culminate the year with a graduation ceremony for those students ready for kindergarten.
For more information, call Janet Kemp at 464-8204.