Today marks the first day of school for many area students, and just like that, the new school year is upon us!
Along with the back-to-school shopping spree comes all of the planning, coordinating, and scheduling of after-school programs, sports teams, and carpools. A lot for any parent to coordinate! While some organizations specialize in particular athletic or music programs, other centers offer a variety of activities and enrollment options for a spectrum of ages.
Here are a few things parents might give thought to:
Consider your child’s interests and needs
Would your child benefit from academic enrichment? Individual or team sports? Music instruction?
Consider location and logistics
Consider how often you might take your child(ren) to the pre-school or after-school program and whether the location makes sense.
Visit facilities and watch staff members interact with children
Do the children seem to feel welcome and content? Do teachers treat the children with respect? Are the instructors engaged with the students and using positive techniques to guide behavior?
Examine the indoor and outdoor environments
Indoor – Is there open space for activities, and is the indoor environment safe and clean? Is there a quiet space for homework or tutoring? Is the furniture comfortable and relaxing? Is the environment organized and attractive to children?
Outdoor – Is there plenty of well-maintained outdoor space? Is there a playground or perhaps a field? And how often will the kids have opportunities to be outdoors?
The Siegel JCC has one of the most comprehensive child care, pre-school and after school programs in North Wilmington, all in a safe and enriching environment.
We have a gym, playgrounds, outdoor fields and tennis courts, a swimming pool, racquetball courts and Jcade – an arcade style facility that uses interactive fitness technology to promote physical activity.
In addition to being a Five Star-Rated, NAEYC-accredited program with excellent student-to-teacher ratios, our Early Childhood Center (ECC) offers programs like The Lunch Bunch and Club 3-4-5 for after school enrichment. Designed for full or half-day pre-school aged children (3-5-year-olds), these programs help extend the school day and give parents some extra time for errands or work.
The Lunch Bunch program offers students the chance to participate in special after lunch enrichment activities such as soccer, art, swimming or karate with friends until 1:45 pm. Club 3-4-5 offers after-school sports later in the day from 3:00 pm-4:15 pm. In both programs, children get to experience daily fun, structured activities until parent pick-up.
If you have older kids in need of after-care, check out our KidsPlace (K-6). Offered each weekday on the Brandywine Public School Calendar (excluding Jewish holidays) from 2:45 pm-6:00 pm, KidsPlace offers activities such as homework room, gym games, Jcade, arts and crafts, and more!
And when schools are closed for conferences, vacations, in-service or snow days, the Siegel JCC is open for our School’s Out program (K-6). During School’s Out, children have full use of the Siegel JCC indoor facility including the gym, playgrounds, outdoor fields and courts, swimming pool, racquetball courts and Jcade.
If you haven’t planned your after-school care yet, it’s not too late! Call the JCC at 302-478-5660 to learn more about any of these fantastic programs.