Pelham Examiner

Kindergarten Social brings district elementary schools together

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In the small, humid PMHS blue gym, dozens of five-year-olds spent their Tuesday afternoon building, drawing, and running around while music blasted and parents mingled.

“Are you making a rainbow?” said one kindergartener at the drawing table as she peered at another’s paper.

“I am!” said the second.

“It’s red then orange right? It usually comes like that? What comes next?” said the first.

“I think it’s purple, green, and then pink,” replied the second.

At another table, kindergarteners crowded around a box filled with legos, building houses and spaceships. A few boys took their creations and flew them around the gym, adding sound effects as they ran.

The Kindergarten Social was a district-wide event hosted by the Pelham elementary school principals and the PTA. The main goal of the event was to give incoming students the opportunity to make new friends in order to ensure a smooth transition to elementary school.

“This is the first Kindergarten Social district-wide,” said Tonya Wilson, Colonial Elementary School principal and one of the arrangers of the event. “We wanted to do something to bring the neighborhood together across the schools (instead) of doing it in our own schools. We thought it would be fun to bring families together.”

An issue many towns face is that students from different elementary schools don’t know each other well until middle school. This impedes friendships from being made and can cause cliques to form, causing the transition from elementary school to middle school to be more difficult.

“We’re going to do intentional things in the district to try to bring kids together at a younger age,” said Wilson. “We’re just gonna let it build from this activity.”

The Kindergarten Social also gave parents the opportunity to meet new teachers, members of the district staff, PTA members and other parents, easing their own worries.

“I’m a little anxious about the new routine,” said Robin Moore, whose son Patrick will be attending Prospect Hill this coming fall. “But they make such a good effort in Pelham to make the kids feel comfortable, like this event, and orientations. They do a lot to make the little kids coming in feel safe, and I think that’s a relief.”

“I’m here to meet and support parents,” said Natalie Marrero, Prospect Hill’s PTA president. “I’m making sure everyone has the information they need for the first day of school. It’s very nice for the district to put together this event to meet other parents and to allow us to meet the principals.”

Though the Kindergarten Social was essentially an enormous playdate, the incoming students there had elementary school on their minds.

“My teachers are going to show me the best things,” said Joshua Gallo, who will be attending Siwanoy. “I don’t know (what kind of things). They’re keeping that a secret.”

About the Writer
Francesca Di Cristofano, Managing Editor
Francesca Di Cristofano’s journalism career began in 2011 as a founding editor of the Colonial Times. She is now a senior at Pelham Memorial High School who is on the varsity volleyball team, plays the flute, is part of the science research program, and likes to write for newspapers.
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Kindergarten Social brings district elementary schools together