ESTEVAN - Children enrolled at the Kid's Kollege Nursery School at the Estevan Alliance Church celebrated the end of a successful year in May.
They had 21 students ages three and four. Half of them attended the school Tuesday and Thursday mornings, and the other half had their classes on the same days in the afternoon.
Owner and teacher Mandy Littlefield, who works alongside Judy Moroz, a teaching assistant at Kid's Kollege, said that throughout the year they did a lot of learning and were able to host their traditional events such as a pirate treasure hunt and a year-end fancy teddy bear tea party.
"We always work through the alphabet and seasons and holidays, colours and shapes. Every year, we have a great big pirate day where we do a treasure hunt, learn about the letter X, and find where X marks the spot and find a treasure. That's their favourite day of the year," Littlefield shared.
"And then we have a teddy bear tea party right near the end of the year where we dress up fancy and have a tea party with our teddy bears."
She added that the students are always excited about doing and learning new things. The school has a show-and-tell day when kids have to bring something to show everybody and tell about it, which they really enjoy doing. They also use the gym once a week, so a lot of kids say that the gym is their favourite thing about school.
The school also held a graduation ceremony in May with parents invited to attend.
"We had a good turnout for [the graduation]. The kids performed their songs and rhymes that they've learned throughout the year and walked across the stage to get a little diploma," Littlefield said.
Now that the school year is finished, the four-year-olds will move on to pre-kindergarten, but the younger students will come back in September to continue with their preschool education.
Littlefield said that they had a very good year. There were a few challenges with COVID-related restrictions, but fortunately, they were able to end the year in a more normal way.
Littlefield said that to keep it interesting and exciting for kids that are returning, they alternate the program from year to year.
"[For example], this year we made alphabet booklets. We made a special page for each letter of the alphabet, and then they got to take that home once it was completed. The next year, it'll look a little different, we won't do the booklets, we'll do something else," Littlefield explained.
All the activities students do at Kid's Kollege are both educational and fun. At the end of the school year, they get a little report card that summarizes what they've been learning throughout that year.
"I also always ask them what their favourite thing about school is and just try to give them some encouragement for what to do next year," Littlefield added.
For the year-end, Kid's Kollege also makes a video for each student, which is a collection of videos and pictures taken over the months.
"And we always say thank you for being part of our school, for coming out each week, how much we enjoyed having them and just good luck to them into kindergarten," Littlefield said.