The Day of Impact was held March 28th at the Carlyle Elementary school. This day was created to get parents and their toddlers, who are turning four in 2012, prepared for Kindergarten. The event was two hours long, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., and had a large turnout, including many younger siblings shadowing along.
The event is put on by members of KidsFirst, a voluntary program that helps families be the best they can be. The program provides enhanced knowledge, support and focuses on the family’s strengths.
The night began with a sign in table, where all the toddlers who would be attending school in the fall, received name tags. To go with this year’s Under the Sea theme, music from Disney’s The Little Mermaid played in the background.
“The whole theme was based on the book Rainbow Fish,” said Madeleine Valentine, Regional KidsFirst Community Developer. “Once I had the book I just took ideas from there.”
Children enjoyed getting to take home little pieces of each activity in their gift bags. Stations included a reading corner, Goldfish crackers and peanut butter snacking corner, a bean bag ocean toss and exercise circle.
The biggest hit of the night however was the fishing pool, featuring several fishing rods and plastic magnetic fish. However, it quickly just became a splash pad!
“The objective of the night is to enhance school readiness,” explained Valentine. “Also it is used to introduce and familiarize families to the school environment.”
Children socialized with others, and made new friends. As the night came to a close, it seemed in many cases that the parents were the tired ones, whereas children were crying that they did not want to go home.
Parents left with several information books and pamphlets from Regional KidsFirst, snack suggestions, info on the Cornerstone School board, and many more things to read.
“Spend one on one time with your children,” Valentine suggests. “You don’t need expensive toys, or a lot of money. Measure things with them, cook with them and just hang out.”