Excitement fills the air at the after-school program at Glenbrook School. Each child is a known and valued contributor with a growing sense of belonging. Not only are they learning, but they take advantage of opportunities to show what they have learned. Twice weekly we have to choose from many with raised hands eagerly hoping to share last week’s new word and its meaning with the other children. Our First Quarter Parent Assembly showcased our choir and one soloist’s quality voice. Another was happy to explain what she learned about drawing in our sketching elective. About twenty participants eagerly demonstrated their soccer skills for watching family members. This Community Connect initiative is off to a great start!
Kids are allowed to be kids at SWB Community Connect. A side benefit of our after-school soccer program is that those with excess energy can expend some of it in the gym before settling down to their next reading lesson. All are welcome and included regardless of their skill or experience levels. Our many coaches and volunteers encourage and empower, helping some of our kids to plug into soccer league opportunities. One of our seven First Nations participants who struggle in reading is strengthened to know that in soccer he can excel and is signing up to play with Calgary Glenmore FC.
Thanks to the investment of ten of our seventeen regular volunteers 32 of our participants are receiving quality support with reading and writing every week. Besides working through their “Explode the Code” phonics workbooks kids hear another chapter from “The Wizard of Oz” and pick up several new words to add to their ever-expanding vocabularies. As many of our families are in Glenbrook’s ESL program expanding vocabulary is key. Our pre-readers enjoy a fast-paced, active learning program that holds their attention with games, contests and rewards.
Thanks to Paul Brandtand TD Musicounts, SWB Community Connect has been supplied with enough children’s guitars to outfit everyone. We also have 19 keyboards waiting in the wings until our guitar elective is complete. It’s great to see kids apply themselves. Some of the committed girls are even cutting their fingernails so they can develop proper guitar-playing calluses!