July 13, 2014 at 3:00 AM
While most children were relaxing on vacation, students in session one of Safety Town were busy learning, practicing, and mastering their safety skills at the PAL during June 30-July 11. The South Plainfield Recreation Department sponsors the summer program in order to teach kindergarten and first grade students important safety skills in a two-week, two-session format.
Safety Town, an educational safety program, is designed to teach children important lessons in fire, poison, street, traffic, and water safety. The children are paired with volunteer instructors, also known as “buddies,” who guided them during the program. At Safety Town, students are given the chance to ride a bicycle and cross the street safely on an indoor course. During the session, students gained an in-depth look at some of the safety skills that were discussed by visiting the Community Pool and the Fire Department to learn more about water and fire safety.
At the end of the two weeks, students participated in a graduation ceremony. With much enthusiasm, students performed three songs; “At the Curb,” “Stop, Look, and Listen,” and “Fire, Fire, Fire.” With a cheering audience filled with friends and family, students then demonstrated their skills by riding a bicycle safely, obeying all traffic rules and crossing the street safely, holding on to their instructor’s hand. Once each child went around Safety Town, the students received a red stop sign-shaped diploma. Finally, the audience gave the graduates a round of applause.
Session one graduates are Zoe Cabrera, Brandon DeGeronimo, Matthew Dougherty, Madison Droge, Ava Faustini, Clare Ferraro, Emily Gerhardt, James Hamlette, James Katsignis, Sebastian Krihak, Dylan Nicolay, John Pignataro, Marlena Rasmussen, Madelyn Schulz, and Madelyn Van Dyk.
Program staff includes head teacher Cheryl Hughes, assistant teacher Kenny Crilley, and instructors Shalya Brown, Sarah Cargill, Olivia Carone, Hermanth Chiluka, Madison Faustini, Paras Gheewala, Caitlin Hughes, Danielle Lapolla, Erika Mont, Raj Patel, Emma Piedilato, Alexa Plasse, Melanie Rajpal, Jaclyn Timmerman, Lauren Zultowski, and Nicole Zultowski.
Safety Town session two will take place July 14-25 at the PAL.