Perkins School recently devised a unique way to promote family and community involvement with the school.
Two classes will display students’ work at two Newark businesses each month. For January, winter-themed word and math problem-solving artwork by Shannon Breen’s first-graders is displayed in the front window at Save-A-Lot, 100 Mason St. Chelsea Darcangelis’ first-graders’ work is on display at Ruffalo Appliance, 217 S. Main St.,
Not only will customers see the students’ work, but students are encouraged to visit these locations with their families to see their artwork and become more familiar with businesses in their community.
“We’ve come so far in our thinking about how students can share their work with their families, and now with the community too,” Principal Sue Achille said. “Students are so proud of what they’ve worked hard to achieve, why keep it at school? Connecting with businesses and organizations within the community helps students to show off their accomplishments and build a bridge between the school and the community. It’s a great partnership and rewarding for the kids.”
Amanda Quku, first-grade teacher and School, Family, Community Engagement Committee leader, said teachers may select work for student displays in businesses that highlight specific common core standards; HEARTS, the school’s vision statement that focuses on hard work, excellence, accountability, respect, teamwork and safety; or the “7 Habits of Happy Kids” positive behavioral and emotional qualities and traits.
“Not only does this initiative promote family and community involvement with Perkins School, one of our focus areas for the school, but parents and community members will be able to understand what the children are working on and or have accomplished in the classroom,” Quku said. “It gives them a snapshot of what students are learning at school.”
Julia Rodriguez, outreach coordinator for the Family and Community Engagement program, works as a liaison between Newark Central School District and community. She reached out to local businesses to seek interest in showcasing student learning, and will help with this initiative throughout the school year.
Quku and Robyn Ross-Squirrell, dean of students at Perkins, Lincoln and Newark High School, went to the businesses and put the students’ work on display in the windows.