Getting students ready for kindergarten

Free program at Hathaway Elementary School helps teach classroom expectations

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Caleb Plamondon and Joshua Homuth participate in the "Ready, Set, Kindergarten" summer program at Hathaway Elementary School. Here, they paint with vegetable and fruit stamps. The assignment took several steps to explain and hinged on the students sharing stamps and paint colors.

Beginning this fall, the Washougal School District will provide full-day kindegarten to all students as a part of a $19.6 million, voter-approved maintenance and operations levy.

In order to help prepare students, Washougal Community Education is offering a free, six-week, “Ready, Set, Kindergarten,” program at Hathaway Elementary School to help students entering kindergarten understand and learn classroom behavior and expectations, and adjust to the rigors of a full-day program. The last day is Thursday.

“There are two classes of 15 students that are receiving intensive kindergarten prep instruction,” said Lisa Young, early learning technician. “Students have also benefited from visiting enrichment activities.”

These have included the Reptile Man, Oregon Coast Aquarium, Jugglemania and the Smarty Pants Theatre program.

During the 2013-14 school year, all-day kindergarten was offered at Hathaway Elementary only through a state grant which targeted schools with a high percentage of students who qualified for free- and reduced-price lunches.