Second Annual Kindergarten Readiness Camp Aims to Curb Learning Loss
SIDNEY — In an effort to curb summer learning loss, the Sidney-Shelby County YMCA hosted its second annual Kindergarten Readiness Camp July 11-22. The camp featured skills early learners should have solidified as they hopefully enter kindergarten ready to learn next month. The camp was held for two weeks at the YMCA and had a full to capacity enrollment. Skills covered included reading readiness skills, letter and letter/sound recognition, counting, patterns, sorting and classifying, handwriting practice, and fine motor skills. Early learners also practiced important school conduct skills like taking turns, walking in line and sharing with others. Educator Jody Price, Troy Schools, was this summer’s teacher and commented on the tremendous growth many of the participants experienced in the short window of time.
Kindergarten readiness camp was piloted at the Y last summer as part of the Y’s commitment to strengthening community.
“Without ongoing opportunities to learn and practice essential skills, kids fall behind on measures of academic achievement over the summer months, including early learners,” said Director of Child Development Elizabeth Grace.
This summer we have placed special emphasis on preventing the “summer slide” in all summer camp programs. The summer slide statistic points to the up to two months of grade level skill loss learners experience in summer without exposure to learning opportunities, noted Grace.
School age children enrolled in summer camp have participated in weekly STEM experiences led by Sidney City Schools teacher Shaun Dunlap, as well as weekly reading and writing activities.
And while these programs keep local children busy and engaged throughout the summer, kids can’t focus when they’re hungry. Children who rely on low-cost lunch plans during the school year are at risk of going hungry when school’s not in session. The Y’s Summer Food Program helps fill that gap to make sure kids can enjoy healthy meals and snacks throughout the summer. So far this summer the Sidney YMCA has served 18,968 meals to 195 youth in the community. Whether it’s keeping little ones full, helping children read, keeping kids safe around water, or keeping them active and engaged throughout the summer, the Y has a program to benefit all youth in the community.
The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening community through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,700 Ys engage 22 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. For more information about early learning and school age programs at the Sidney Y call 937-498-2273 or visit www.sidney-ymca.org.