21st Century Program Offers Summer Enrichment for Middle Schoolers

NAMS student Jada Baker displays the teddy bear she made during Sewing Club time in the 21st Century Summer Program.

New Albany Middle School offered some popular enrichment classes this month for 6th-8th graders.   Sewing, cooking, and robotics were offered through the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant Program.

The instructor for the Sewing Club was Patrice Mason.  Students learned basic beginner sewing and how to use a sewing machine.  They made pillows, teddy bears, tote bags, and table cloths.  Throughout the classes, students learned how safety and math are integrated into sewing.

Maia Miller served as the instructor for the Cooking Club.  Students learned kitchen safety and hygiene, while using mathematics in their daily activities.  “We have learned how to double recipes and half recipes, as well as measure liquid and dry ingredients,” Miller explained.  “It is important for students to understand those real-life connections between cooking and math.”

The Robotics Club’s instructors were Jalon Bullock and Latrina Bynum.  Students were exposed to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) activities.  Lessons included general coding, drone flying, sphero, and vex robotics.  Students visited the Career & Technical Education Center on the high school campus to visit the STEM and Engineering Labs.

Throughout the twelve day program, students were also given time each day to work on their summer reading projects which will be due in August when they return to school.

The 21st Century program supports the creation of community learning centers that provide academic enrichment and remediation opportunities during non-school hours for students.  In 2013, the New Albany School District received a five-year federal grant to provide before and after school tutoring, as well as summer programming.  The school district is completing the fourth year of the grant.

“We are excited that we were able through our summer programming to offer our students a broad array of enrichment activities that can complement their regular academic programs,” said Melanie Shannon, Project Director for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant.