South Kearns Elementary recently started an afterschool program provided through Salt Lake County Youth Services. Students live in an especially impoverished area of Kearns, Utah and some of our program participants struggle with homelessness, are hungry, or simply need extra tutoring. We decided to finish off the year by providing a Summer Adventure Program for 50 South Kearns Elementary students, most of which participated in the South Kearns Afterschool Program during the school year. We wanted to give them a summer they would never forget and foster an opportunity to explore, learn, and have fun in the process.
There were a total of four field trips throughout the month of June and five destinations. We started off at Utah’s Hogle Zoo where students were able to learn about many types of animals. All of the animals we were introduced to had been rescued from illness, cruelty, or an accident and could not return to the wild due to the inability to provide for themselves.
Our second trip was a ride on the Historic Heber Creeper out in the Wasatch Mountains. Many of the kids have not been outside their neighborhood, let alone Heber City, Utah. We wanted to provide a history lesson cloaked in a fun ride and succeeded. We were “robbed” once or twice, but the robber sang us a song during the trip so we decided to forgive her.
Next, we attended The Leonardo and The Discovery Gateway Children’s Museum in Salt Lake City. On this trip we focused on learning all about science, art, and a combination of the two. Students were able to enjoy a presentation on Tesla’s theory of electricity, learned how a green screen works, created music, and made claymation videos.
Our final trip was to Lagoon in Farmington, Utah. Students had heard about Lagoon but had never gone before. After a swim at the waterpark we split into groups and rode many rides. They were exhausted but remembered to say “Thank you.”
For more information about Youth Services Afterschool Program please call 385-468-4500 or you can visit www.youth.slco.org.