Collaboration brings literacy instruction to Kalmia public housing

Program with modest expectations sees robust participation -- and results

By Amy Bounds
Daily Camera
POSTED: 08/09/2013 05:31:05 PM MDT

Organizers of a pilot summer literacy program for children in the Kalmia public housing in north Boulder initially hoped that 10 of the 57 Boulder Valley children living there would sign up.

They ended up with about 40 students, ranging in age from 2 1/2 to 12. The students, who primarily attend Columbine and University Hill elementary schools, worked on targeted literacy skills in small groups. The program also incorporated 26 iPod shuffles and 10 iPads, evening family story times and community visits to the Boulder Public Library.

The pilot is a collaborative effort between Impact on Education, Boulder Housing Partners and the Boulder Valley School District's literacy department.

"It blew away our expectations with the need and the want for this program," said Rene Brodeur, Boulder Housing Partners' resident director.

The program, held for four weeks in June and two weeks this month, was designed to "bookend" the district's free, science- and literacy-based summer school program so students who qualified could attend both.

The goal of both the summer school program and the Kalmia program is preventing summer learning loss.

Read more at Daily Camera.

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