Archive for Thursday, September 15, 2005

After school program is a big hit

September 15, 2005

Children of the Baldwin School District are beginning to have more opportunities to keep busy after school and when school is not in session.

The Baldwin Recreation Commission has two programs to keep children busy during times they normally wouldn't be. The BCRC is running its After School Program and Kids Day Out to help children and their parents.

"It gives them something to do besides sit at home," said Tammy Michael, BCRC sports coordinator. "It's good that they aren't home alone and have something to do for that matter," Michael said.

The After School Program is available for Baldwin Elementary School students Monday through Friday on days when school is in session. The transportation is not available yet for the surrounding elementary schools.

"The after school program is a place for children to go so they don't have to go home by themselves and they still get help with their homework," Michael said.

There are 31 students enrolled in the program, which costs $85 a month per child. Kim Hett is the supervisor for the program, but she receives help from a couple of Baker students.

Michael said the program is fairly orderly, because there are time restraints to each activity or learning session.

"It's a pretty structured program," Michael said. "They come in and do homework while eating a snack. There are Baker students there that are in education to help them with their homework. Then they have 15 minutes of free time and then they have a craft. By that time, it's usually time for their parents to pick them up."

The Kids Day Out offers children a chance to take a field trip when school is not in session.

"It's something for children if their parents work or if they just want to do something," Michael said. "Some people just send their kids because it's something to do that day off, because we go on field trips."

Kim Farmer, Baldwin Junior High School sixth-grade paraprofessional, is the Kids Day Out Supervisor. Farmer said she enjoyed the first trip of the year, which went to a park in Topeka and an orchard in Overbrook.

"I really enjoy working with children," Farmer said. "The first field trip was about getting to know the children. It was fun, but I will say it will improve from here on out."

Future activities planned include Great Harvest Bread Company and the Mercantile in Lawrence, Waxman's Candles, Louisburg Cider Mill and a pumpkin patch.

"I try to plan things that accommodate a wide age group and a variety of places for the kids," Farmer said.

The next field trips will be Oct. 3, 14, 20 and 21. The children ride a school bus and bring their own sack lunch on the trip. Children can sign up at the BCRC office at 820 High Street. The cost is $20 for the short day, which lasts from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The long day, which costs $25, ends at 6 p.m.

There are no field trips over the Christmas holiday. There will be a trip the day before Thanksgiving.

The BCRC can be reached at (785) 594-3670.

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