Jun 22, 2018
Media note: each weekday there are three sessions available for media to visit beginning at 8:30 and ending at 11:50. We can help you get the best visuals during your visit to College for Kids. Please contact me for assistance.
From Harry Potter to GIS Mapping:
Grant Wood AEA’s College For Kids Starts its 31st Year
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - For more than three decades, high-achieving middle school students have had the opportunity to engage in a college-like experience during their summer vacations. Instead of spending the months of June and July at amusement parks and playgrounds, many local middle schoolers have chosen to explore their academic interests by taking courses in S.T.E.M, fine arts, history, language, communication, and more.
Grant Wood Area Education Agency is marking its 31st year of bringing college experiences to local middle school students this summer as more than 1,000 students from East Central Iowa begin taking courses through College for Kids.
College for Kids has a rich history of providing gifted and talented students in 6th, 7th, and 8th grades the opportunity to interact with a challenging curriculum in a college setting. This year attendees come from 35 different area schools including Alburnett, Anamosa, Andrews Christian Academy, Belle Plaine, Benton, Cedar Rapids, Cedar Valley Christian School, Center Point-Urbana, Central City, Clear Creek Amana, College Community, English Valleys, Highland, HLV, Iowa City, Iowa City Regina, Iowa Valley Community, Isaac Newton Christian Academy, LaSalle Middle School, Linn-Mar, Lisbon, Marion Independent, Mid-Prairie, Monticello, Mount Vernon, North Cedar, North Linn Community, Regis Middle School, Solon, Tipton, Trinity Lutheran, Vinton-Shellsburg, West Branch, Williamsburg and Willowwind.
Each year the list of participating districts is long, and the students enrolling have benefited from a variety of course offerings over Grant Wood AEA’s College for Kids’ history.
Instructors have seen regular interest in traditional courses like dissection every year, and increased interest in new topics offered each year as well. Susie Green, Grant Wood AEA’s student programs specialist, says College for Kids has introduced several new, advanced-level courses for the first time this summer. “ This year we’re offering students a chance to explore dystopian literature, learn more about GIS mapping, and a chance to dig into everything from Harry Potter to ancient China. This summer is an opportunity to open new pathways for learning, and when students have the opportunity to self-select courses, it provides a very rich learning experience.”
Students select which classes they would like to attend during the two-week sessions, and their learning culminates with a Showcase of Learning day, where parents are invited to attend College for Kids to experience their students’ final projects and performances.
Grant Wood Area Education Agency first established College for Kids in 1987, offering a variety of courses taught by talented area educators and professionals. In 1995, College for Kids added its Art program as an option for students who are gifted in the area of fine arts. This summer, Grant Wood AEA’s College for Kids will host its 31st year of specialized course-offerings with more than 50 instructors and 1,000 enrolled students participating in summer learning on the Coe College campus.
Grant Wood AEA is one of nine area education agencies in the state of Iowa. College for Kids is a summer learning program offered through Grant Wood AEA to expand students’ academic abilities and interests. More than 30 school districts are participating in the program, which is available to students in Benton, Cedar, Iowa, Johnson, Jones, Linn and Washington counties.