Every parent wants their child to have a great experience at school – to learn new things, make new friends, and remain excited about going every single day. After all, you’ve prepared for this day for quite some time. But did you know school success begins long before that first day? Pittsfield Promise, a Berkshire United Way-led coalition made up of community members from various community sectors, is committed to helping every child get the skills they need to succeed.
On April 6th, eighteen tables staffed by 20 volunteers from local agencies that work with young children, gathered in the community room at the Berkshire Athenaeum for the sixth annual School Readiness Fair. When the doors opened at 10:30 in the morning, over 15 families were lined up, ready to engage in fun, educational activities designed to foster kindergarten readiness skills.
Activities—all of which can be replicated at home—included making puppets and retelling stories, creating buildings and animals with household items and tape, using bingo markers to trace letters, and rolling dice to identify numbers. Highlights of the event included using Ozobots (tiny robots) used to learn simple coding, riding a school bus for the first time and participating in a free developmental screening called Ages and Stages.
|Kelly Bevan McIlquham of Berkshires Macaroni kids helps a young child trace letters with a bingo marker. This was just one of several activities offered at the recent School Readiness Fair held at the Berkshire Athenaeum.|
Completing the Ages and Stages screening helps children, aged birth to five, get the best start in life. This simple developmental questionnaire asks you about skills most kids have at that age, to help determine if your child is on track. If s/he needs a little extra practice in a specific area, a Child and Family Community Engagement Coordinator will identify activities you can do to help set your child up for success.
To schedule a free screening, call Jenn Faulconer at 413.441.0974. After the screening is completed, activities will be suggested to support your child’s growth at home and in the community, creating a path to school readiness.
Coordinator of Early Childhood Development