Teaching and Learning: The Impact of the Hope College Summer Enrichment Program on Hope Students and Child Attendees
Dr. Patricia Griffin
The present study collected anonymous data, using questionnaires, from Hope student teachers and the parents of children who attended the Summer Enrichment Program (SEP). The SEP provided a learning laboratory experience for four Hope students in the Early Childhood Education (ECE) program. Hope students planned, implemented and assessed developmentally appropriate activities and experiences to meet the needs of a diverse group of 3- and 4-yearold children, with the support of the Director of the ECE program. Recruitment for the SEP intentionally targeted children who attend local Head Start and Great Start to Readiness programs, in order to include a diverse group of children who typically would not have educational/enrichment opportunities during the summer months. The program was designed to benefit Hope student teachers through opportunities to apply what they learned during ECE coursework and to participate in a co-investigation with faculty. The program design also benefitted child attendees and their families through opportunities to interact with well-qualified educators, experience low student-teacher ratios and participate in a research-based, developmentally appropriate program. Hope student and parent questionnaire responses provided quantitative data using a Likert scale and qualitative data from responses to follow-up, open-ended questions about the perceived effects of the overall experience. Preliminary data analysis was focused by question and analyzed across all respondents to identify consistencies and differences. Responses from parents and Hope student teachers were overwhelmingly positive. Responses from parent questionnaires included that children enjoyed the experience and benefitted from program activities and interactions with teachers. Responses from Hope student teacher questionnaires included that they benefitted from having the responsibility to plan and teach for an entire week, and they would like to have more opportunities to interact with families.
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