In Season: Summer School Twist

July 29, 2017 Jessica Muncrief

DACC Kids Kollege
Keeps Kiddos Engaged and Learning All
Summer Long

Written by Isabel A. Rodriguez
Photography courtesy DACC Kids Kollege

kids busy drawing on a classroom table with drawing materialsPottery, virtual reality, and Lego comics—these are just a handful of the courses offered as part of this year’s Kids Kollege. The summer program is part of Dona Ana Community College’s Community Education program, and courses, which range from $50 to $155, are geared to kids and teens ages five through 18.

Disguised as fun summertime activities, each course exposes students to valuable skills that will come in handy both in the classroom and in the real world. “We want them to have as much fun as they can, in a structured and controlled environment,” says Melody Prather, Customized Training administrative assistant. “Our main focus is that they’re having fun learning something that’s beneficial to them.”

kids in blue shirt are busy learning to design in a computerMost of the courses are STEM-related, but there are no prerequisites to enroll, and other topics are available. “I’m a big believe that you shouldn’t just sit your kids in front of the television or computer,” Melody adds. “I think it’s important to keep our kids engaged and show them that there are opportunities out there.”

Melody and some of the other course instructors gave us a sneak peek at a few of the upcoming courses and why they recommend them as a perfect way to spend the summer.

two tween girls on a table learning proper dining etiquette

Etiquette for Tweens

July 14, 9:30 am to 12:30pm, Cost: $50
Do your children know how to properly shake hands with someone? Do they remove their hats at the dinner table? Instructor Marina Atma will cover these topics and more in this etiquette course designed especially for students ages 12-17.

“It’s about first impressions,” Marina explains. “These skills or manners can sometimes get overlooked. Especially with young adults, I tell them that they’re making an impression on someone who could be a future employer or someone who could help them on their way to college.”

The class also includes a lunch, during which students will learn dining etiquette. Marina says, “It’s good information that, once they learn it, hopefully they’ll carry it on through adulthood.”

kids busy assembling lego pieces on a table with their instructor

Lego Comics: Design Your Own Adventure

July 17-21, 9am to noon, Cost: $129
Combining two of kids’ favorite things—comics and Legos—this five-day course introduces young students to the exciting world of graphic design as they build their own 3D world and become the star of their own digital comic books.

“They create a story, illustrate it and lay it out. They get to see it come to life on the page,” explains course instructor Stephanie Reyes. “We talk about developing a storyline, the main characters, the setting, the conflict, the solution, and being able to put it altogether. Plus, doing it all on the computer increases their skills in technology and their creativity.”

two kids learning to set up a video using a webcam and a computer

Lego Films and Stop Animation

July 24-28, 9am to noon, Cost: $129

Could your little one be the next Steven Spielberg? Stephanie also leads this course, which helps students get their start in stop animation, all with the help of their favorite Lego or action figures.

kids busy learning using a computer with their instructor“They create miniature sets and work in partners to pose and take images for each of their scenes, then they put it together and it creates a stop action movie,” Stephanie says. “It’s amazing to see the kids be able to create something, and seeing their faces light up at the end product is amazing. We do a showcase at the end of each class for the parents, and the kids are so excited at their accomplishments.”

CPR for Teens

July 24-28, 9am to noon, Cost: $129
Perfect for teens looking to make some extra cash by babysitting this summer, and a helpful skill for anyone to learn, this course covers when CPR is needed, how to give CPR to a child and a infant, and how to use an automated external defibrillator.

The course is taught by Ruben Casas, program director at Region II EMS and a retired firefighter.

“I, as a parent, would feel much better if the babysitter I hired was certified in first aid and CPR—it would put my mind at ease,” Ruben says. “The whole idea is making our community safe. The more people that take these classes, the better off we are. “

After completing the course, students will receive a certification that’s good for two years.

Want more info on these and other courses?
DACC Kids Kollege
dacc.nmsu.edu/comed/kids-kollege
575-527-7527

The post In Season: Summer School Twist appeared first on Las Cruces Magazine.

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