Horizons completes summer learning program
CENTREVILLE — Friends, family, staff and board members gathered in the cafeteria at The Gunston School on Thursday, July 28, to close out the Horizons of Kent and Queen Anne’s summer camp. Students from kindergarten to third grade, sitting facing the spectators, were honored for their success throughout the six-week program, spoke about their time during the camp and presented various projects completed at the summer program.
Horizons of Kent and Queen Anne’s, established in 1995 as part of the Horizons National Student Enrichment Program Inc., is a summer learning program for students at or below the poverty level that provides campers with further development in reading, writing and math. Students also have the opportunity to advance in their swimming by practicing three times a week and having assessments completed to gauge their advancement.
Students learn not just how to swim and how to do the various swim strokes but also learn their limits, such as how deep of water they are capable and comfortable swimming in as well as how to tread water. During the ceremony, names of all the kids were read stating the swim level they came to camp at and what level they achieved by the end.
“Over the summer, disadvantaged children tread water at best or even fall behind. Known as the ‘Summer Slide,’ it is often a predictor of truancy, high school dropout rates, eventual unemployment — and worse,” Executive Director Bob Parks said. “Today, we recognize and honor these students’ accomplishments this summer. They will return to school this fall armed with confidence and preparedness that will allow them to achieve academic success during the school year and beyond.”
The group of kindergarten students performed a song about mass and the difference between the three stages — water, liquid and gas. First-grade students showed their memory books created about the camp and said their favorite recollections, such as math, playing with friends, learning and watching one of the counselors dancing while lip syncing.
As for the second-graders at the camp, a presentation was given about a project they completed focusing on forces in motion. The project was to show motion by using a marshmallow in a cup with a balloon surrounding the end of the Dixie cup. A hole was created in the bottom of the cup to allow air from the balloon to enter the cup and propel the marshmallow forward. The third-graders, focusing on weather and the various climates throughout the world, created dioramas out of shoe boxes with depictions of the climates and environments.
Among the activities completed, campers took a field trip to the United States Militar y Academy in Annapolis and learned how to march, hold a flag and how to properly salute. Accompanied by Midshipmen, the students learned how one person is important in making the whole of a group work to its best.
Horizons of Kent and Queen Anne’s is one of 51 affiliates of the Horizons National summer learning program. The program employs an experiential model of teaching that focuses on reading, writing and math, as well as some physical activity.
The program, headquartered at The Gunston School in Centreville and Radcliffe Creek School in Chestertown, serves students from kindergarten through eighth grade.
For more information about the program, visit www.horizonskentqueenannes.org.
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Kids attending the Horizons of Kent and Queen Anne’s six-week summer learning program sit during the closing ceremony of the camp on Thursday, July 28, in the cafeteria of The Gunston School in Centreville.