Student engagement is the spark that lights a flame of interest, which can ignite a fire that grows into a passion. In order to engage a curious student, an educational program must attract children on a real level – stimulating their interests and helping them grow into lifelong learners, not just yearlong students.
Our local public schools are doing just that, creating special activities that challenge kids to think in innovative ways and open up their world to new possibilities. Here are just a few of the unique programs offered in our area schools.
Blue Ash Elementary School
Sycamore School District
The School Garden at Blue Ash Elementary teaches students how to grow their own produce, herbs and flowers for bouquets. This year, the club added milkweed to grow in order to help promote the Monarch butterfly population. Through the School Garden, students learn about composting and physically partake in the rewarding toil of agriculture.
Since Blue Ash includes families from over 23 different countries, they take great pride in their Cultural Celebration which honors their students’ background and diversity. During the event, families set up booths at the school to showcase their country’s art, food and clothing. Students visit the booths and learn about different cultures, as well as the uniqueness of their own heritage.
Loveland Elementary School
Loveland School District
Loveland Elementary School’s “Mallet Madness” club engages fourth grade students through the Orff-Schulwerk approach to musical education. The club meets before school three days a week to develop students’ skills through percussion and guitar instruction. Over 500 budding musicians practice and then perform pieces in this enrichment program. Mallet Madness not only helps to instill a love of music in young children, but also gives students great opportunities to practice cooperative learning and problem solving skills.
Kilgour Elementary School
City of Cincinnati School District
“Mustang Mondays” at Kilgour Elementary teaches kindergarten through 6th grade students about fine arts, fitness, music and more. Kilgour partners with local organizations to help broaden their students’ education. Kilgour Kids have learned about Spanish from the Cincinnati Spanish Academy, studied art through their partnership with the Art Museum and listened to music with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. By uniting education with exposure to the arts, students are encouraged to explore their own personal creativity.
Indian Hill High School
Indian Hill School District
The Hope Foundation at Indian Hill High School offers students a real life way to influence tragic situations around world. This club works to support a school in India that provides free education to impoverished children. Throughout the year, students raise money and awareness for the school and execute various fund drives in order to help feed these children the only meal they receive during the day. The Hope Foundation makes a difference by connecting students to students: reaching and teaching across borders.
What unique programs does your public school offer? Send a message to [email protected] to share your stories!