“I have had my children enrolled here since my youngest was an infant. Now my oldest has begun elementary school and I couldnít be happier with their growth and care. I have seen the curriculum and care provided at each level of the center and I have been pleased every step of the way. My kids literally run into the center every morning excited to see their teachers and friends. My oldest child was more than prepared to start Kindergarten and has transitioned wonderfully due largely to the help of the First Steps staff. We see the staff as an extension of our family and I am so thankful to have found them.“
Before and After School (5 years to 12 years)"Laying the Foundation for Education and our Childrenís Overall Character."
The best analogy to summarize this an excerpt from the book by Parker and Anderson called "212: The Extra Degree."
We know how the steam engine changed modern society. Those small incremental efforts can help our children realize their dreams. We focus the After School Academy on that "extra one degree" to power our childrenís success. We accomplish this in the following ways:
- Individually Focused Programs: Our teachers not only help with homework, they also provide supplemental support to reinforce what they are currently learning during the day.
- Regular Site Trainings: We have developed a strategic partnership with an outside organization to hold trainings for both staff and parents.
- Parent Partnerships: If First Steps is truly a community, and it takes a community to raise a child, then how can we do this without you? We need your continued involvement, feedback, and support.
We are at a unique moment in educational history, as digital learning begins to take hold. College students can not only take classes online, they can actually achieve degrees remotely. Once school districts can begin to find solutions to their budget woes, we will see the use of tablets in the classroom. It is critical that our children at First Steps are comfortable with technology as learning agility becomes more and more critical for workplace readiness. The neat thing is our children will be ahead of the curve and they LOVE learning with iPads.
Our teachers in the After School Academy are providing an impeccable level of structure to the After School Academy. We have throughly researched specialized apps, e-learning websites, and even added a reading fluency application that is not even available on the scholastic market yet called King-Devick. The King-Devick app, which also has a variation used for concussion testing in the NHL, was developed by an optometrist and has shown to increase reading fluency through the combination of eye tracking (saccadic eye movement) and comprehension. This test has demonstrated the ability to dramatically improve reading fluency in four to eight-year olds. If your child is struggling with reading fluency, please let the teachers know. We are thrilled that First Steps has the King-Devick application.
Lastly, we are in the process of doing an inventory of our digital learning program to get us laser focused on how to best take advantage of making learning fun.
All of the lesson plans are submitted by our After School Academy teachers and approved by our center director.