SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Creative Kids Academy (CKA) may have closed its doors last week out of precaution, but students of the Clinton Avenue preschool and day care are still being provided daily education lessons and activities.
“We are dedicated to helping our families get through this difficult time and ensuring that our children are being stimulated and learning while they are home, said Dan Rinaldi director and owner of CKA.
Each week, teachers are sending home educational and fun age-appropriate packets comprised of crafts, activities and books. Families are encouraged to upload their work to Class Dojo to share with friends and teachers. Through the app, said Rinaldi, classmates and their teachers are also able to interact.
“Our teachers have been recording themselves doing lessons and experiments and our students are able to upload pictures to share with them,” he said, adding that the school is currently working on a live chat feature as well.
“The goal is for them to see their friends and their teachers faces. This is a long time without interaction and we are looking at different ways to make the transition to home school and back to real school easier,” said Rinaldi.
"Creative kids is doing a great job with Class Dojo. My son's teacher has been making videos of herself reading to them and making projects. Each week, we pick up a folder of work for them. Everything in it is pre-cut and ready," said Louisa Ruela, who's 4-year-old son, Daniel, attends CKA. "This week, he got a book from his teacher. I am so impressed and glad he goes there."
Rinaldi has also joined in the effort, uploading a Read Aloud video (https://bit.ly/3afAfod) focused on Kobi Yamada's book What Would You Do With A Problem. The story, he said, is 'for anyone of any age' and deals with 'having a problem they wish would go away.'
“Within a problem, there is an opportunity and it is geared not just to children but to parents as well,” said Rinaldi. “It is a good springboard right now for parents to talk to their kids about what is going on.”
While he understands the dramatic and sudden change in dynamic and every day life can be difficult, Rinaldi hopes his families will use this time as an ‘opportunity to be together.’
“Our parents are now faced with being the teacher as well as the primary care giver,” he said. “All this one-on-one attention with our children is unprecedented. Even in the summer it is different because we are out and about doing different things."
Rinaldi added. "We hope are families are safe and healthy and that they can see this time positively and as a chance to spend quality time together and learn things about one another.”
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