The Texas Wesleyan University School of Education welcomed more than 275 Fort Worth ISD elementary students for the 18th annual “First Day of College: Science and Reading Days.”
“What a successful collaboration and opportunity our students were given to experience campus life and to learn in a college classroom,” Diane Kue, FWISD Elementary ESL Implementation Specialist, said. “Many of our students were saying they want to go to Texas Wesleyan when they go to college. That statement alone made the trip successful because we want our students to think about their future, and the visit made an educational future imaginable.”
The two-day camp took place October 26-27 and included science “Motion and Force” activities and reading “What is an idea?” taught by Texas Wesleyan education majors. The students were able to take a campus tour, and each received two of their very own books generously donated by Half Priced Books, totaling over 500 books.
“Today was not good, it was FANTASTIC!”
“The cars were more fun the second time!” (This child had come last year.)
“I want to go here when I grow up!”
“I like reading and drawing together. It’s fun.”
“They have a swimming pool INSIDE!”
The camp was coordinated by Kue and R.J. Wilson, Ph.D. and professor of education, along with six of the School of Education professors and 42 Wesleyan students. Among these were Elizabeth Ward, Ph.D., Jackie Gaffner, Ph.D., Lisa Dryden, Ph.D., Elsa Anderson, Ph.D., Esther Garza, Ph.D., and Patsy Robles-Goodwin, Ph.D.
The hard work, dedication, attentiveness, patience, and friendly skills Texas Wesleyan students showed while teaching has resulted in FWISD wanting to hire them post-graduation. This has also led to the possibility of furthering the partnership to middle and high school in the coming years.
The participating students are enrolled at Fort Worth ISD’s Language Centers and are living in town courtesy of the United Nations. Fort Worth is one of just seven U.N. Refugee Relocation Centers in the U.S. and each of these students have received little to no prior schooling.
This partnership between the Department of Undergraduate Education and FWISD's Language Center is a true example of "Smaller. Smarter."