Today’s guest blogger is Andrew Messer. Andrew serves with City Year New York on the Citizens team at P.S. 112 in Long Island City, Queens.
Last month, the P.S. 112 Citizens Team hosted a Math and Literacy Night of Games. The goals of the event were increase student enthusiasm for learning, familiarize parents with what their children are being taught in school, and strengthen the ties between our team and the local community. The event was a major success in which we accomplished all of our objectives as well as had a great time in the process.
At the event, three groups, each divided by students of 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades, along with their parents, rotated between three stations of enjoyable activities. Taking after the popular TV show, one group of corps members led a group in some competitive games of “Are you Smarter than a (3rd, 4th, or 5th) Grader?” Parents and students battled to the very end as students tried to recall what they had just learned in class while the parents’ memories were put to the test. Up in the library, students and parents rotated around several game stations including “Vocab Jenga,” “Story Pass,” and “Character Guess” while listening to music. Though it was primarily students only who participated in this activity, the delight on the parents faces that their children were so engaged in their literacy learning made it an enjoyable time for all. Our third activity was a mini lesson giving parents a broad overview of the units their students have been learning in the classroom. Corps Members put together an extensive power point for the parents that was emailed out to those interested. The methods and other learning material included in the presentation will hopefully encourage the parents to work with their students to fortify their children’s understanding of key concepts. In this way, the team at P.S. 112 believes that their impact will not only affect the students positively in the classroom but will also develop a stronger culture of learning in their home lives.
Along with past events such as Teacher Appreciation Day and a Hispanic American Heritage assembly, Math and Literacy Night has helped to further develop the climate of learning at P.S. 112. The corps members eagerly await more events such as these in the future that will surely reaffirm City Year’s ability to create a real positive difference in the community.