Gearing Up for Kindergarten

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Julie Schauer, Parent participant

I am writing this letter to endorse the "Gearing Up for Kindergarten" program currently taking place in the Grand Forks Public Schools. I am currently in my eighth year of teaching in the elementary setting.This is my fourth year with the Grand Forks Public Schools, and I taught previously in Moorhead, MN. My husband and I have two sons; one who is 5 and one who is 21 months. Our five year old will begin kindergarten in the fall of 2014.  We enrolled in the ten-week "Gearing Up for Kindergarten" program being held at Viking Elementary this spring. We have already attended three sessions, and we have been more than impressed. It has been a wonderful experience. We are so thankful to be able to have this opportunity to interact with our son in the school setting; to be able to experience some of the activities he will participate in next year; to encourage his love of learning and excitement for school; to know expectations of four and five-year olds entering kindergarten, and to get ideas of learning activities we can do at home together.  Our son has been in daycare for 5 years, and he has learned many preschool concepts and skills.  

My husband and I are both teachers, and we read together  and do many learning activities  at home. We  still don't  feel  like this  program could  be replicated. Our son is so excited to go each week, and this enthusiasm will carry into his beginning  kindergarten  next  year. He is more prepared to succeed knowing school routines and expectations, what school is "like" by participating  in new learning activities  each week,  and the important skill of meeting and making new friends.  I think   this program should  be more available  to families  right in their neighborhood schools. I would  like to see sustainable  funding  for this program each year. The results would be children and families that  are more prepared for  kindergarten  and more prepared  to have a successful schooling experience. Sincerely, Julie  Schauer

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