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Pizza Helps Students At Sandy Hook School Celebrate The End Of The Year



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Pizza Helps Students At Sandy Hook School Celebrate The End Of The Year

By Eliza Hallabeck

Students in Education Connection, an after school program, at Sandy Hook School celebrated the end of the school year with pizza this Monday night.

The event was scheduled to take place a week before, but high temperatures closed schools early for two days in a row. About 45 students, parents, and friends of the program filled the room in time to sit down and eat pizza.

Kristy Gerdo, the lead teacher with Education Connection in Newtown, said most the students participate in the program after school everyday, but many also attend the morning sessions. She said the program offers the students a time to do homework, eat snacks, and do projects. Teachers are available to help, and other employees of Education Connection are also on hand to help the students.

“We had a science program in the afternoons on Tuesdays and Wednesdays,” said Ms Gerdo. She said the science teacher at Sandy Hook School would let the students into her classroom or they would work outside on projects. The students created lava lamps, studied DNA with the help of candy, and studied animal digestions systems.

Ms Gerdo said the program costs $10 each day for the morning sessions, and $13.50 each day for the afternoon sessions.

Colin Parker, a fourth grade student at Sandy Hook School, said he attends Education Connection everyday after school. “It’s fun,” he said, “because we get to play outside.”

Colin said he also enjoys the pasta parties that the program offers for students.

Sitting across the table from Colin while he ate his slice of pizza was his mother, Joan Huskins-Parker. She said the program helps the students to learn patience, because they do not go home directly after school. They have to learn to pace themselves, she said.

“It’s a very necessary service for working parents,” Ms Huskins-Parker said.

She also said that the program adds a more structured social environment than the students are used to.

At another table, Rachel Sherwood, a second grade student who attends the afternoon program once a week, sat with both her parents while she ate pizza.

“After we have snack we usually go outside,” she said. The students can play games like tag or they can play in the sandbox, Rachel said.

“It is nice because I have my friends,” Rachel said while explaining why she enjoys the program, “and the teachers are really nice.”

Other students like Layton Harrell and his friend Jack Miller, both second grade students, said they attend the program everyday after school, said they enjoy the food the best.

“You’re able to teach them while they are doing homework,” said Adam Horvath, a graduating senior at Newtown High School who works for Education Connection.

Adam said he has been working for the program for about two months, but it think it is a great thing for the students.

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