Tutors

Tutors:  The District does not endorse or recommend specific tutors; however, a list of people providing tutoring services is available.

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Technology Innovation Specialist – Jocelynn Buckentin

Smartphones: Making a Case for Waiting Until 8th

Kids these days. This phrase has been uttered by each generation as they progress into adulthood and reflect back on their own childhood. When I think of my own, I remember playing outside until the streetlights came on in the summer. My neighborhood friends and I were kept busy building forts, climbing trees, and exploring the world around us. Children are growing up in a different world than the one experienced by past generations. Technology use is now a given rather than a luxury. Smartphones have become constant companions.

The full impact of being constantly connected has yet to be ascertained, but there are several distressing effects that have come to light in recent years, including the negative impact on the mental health of our children. Early social media use is a contributing factor, as it allows kids to dwell on what their friends are doing without them.

One common pressure faced by families at increasingly younger ages is the question of when to get your child their first cell phone. The day before I left for college, I purchased my first cell phone because I wanted an easy way to keep track of  friends and family. Today, students as young as elementary school begin making this request of their parents. You might hear about how everyone already has one, and how your child doesn’t want to be the only one who doesn’t. The word unfair might be thrown in for good measure.

According to a recent survey given to parents of students in grades 5-12 in Hutchinson Public Schools, 81.7% of parents believe that students should receive their first smartphone between grades 6-9. Just over 31% of parents feel that it is appropriate to introduce smartphones in Grade 6, and 50% of parents wait until their student is in grades 7-9 before purchasing their child a smartphone.

The decision on when to give your child a smartphone is a deeply personal one based on many factors, but typically revolving around the need to be connected. Kids today are busy, and parents need a method for knowing both where their children are and when they might need a ride. This issue alone tips the scales in favor of a cell phone purchase for many families.

There has been a push in recent months for parents around the country to sign a pledge to “Wait Until 8th.” This grassroots movement encourages parents to band together in support of letting kids be kids by delaying the purchase of a smartphone until Grade 8. They argue that smartphone use in childhood is altering the typical childhood experience because kids are choosing to be on devices instead of hanging out with friends, playing outside, or reading.

No matter what each family decides, it is important to weigh all options and avoid the early purchase of a smartphone due to the convenience of adding a child to the family plan. It’s more work to find a flip phone than it is to take advantage of a free smartphone offer, which may be what’s best for the wireless provider but not the child. To sign the pledge and learn more about the potential negative effects of smartphone use in children, visit www.waituntil8th.org.

 

It Is About You!

At Parks, Recreation and Community Education, It Is About You

By Dolf Moon, Director of Parks, Recreation & Community Education

Even with cool temperatures, summer is right around the corner. The PRCE brochure is out and has plenty of opportunities for you and your family. We look forward to seeing your family at the Hutchinson Aquatic Center this summer. Your kids may be interested in the four free Passport to the Parks opportunities included in our brochure. We also have a variety of sports camp offerings led by the Tiger Coaching Staff.

This summer you will want to take advantage of our many community playgrounds. We encourage you check out our parks, trails and fitness park information at www.ci.hutchinson.mn.us or maybe even try geocaching. Perhaps consider registering for our new Youth Camps located at Rotary Park.

The PRCE Department offers a wide variety of educational and recreational opportunities to district residents. The uniqueness of the program starts with you. If you have an interest and do not see a program that meets your needs, let us know. We will try to arrange a program. If you have a skill, you would like to share with others, give us a call. We are currently putting together the fall/winter brochure

PRCE reaches out to the entire community whether you are a parent with a preschool child (Early Childhood Family Education), a student taking a program after school, participating in Middle School athletics, an adult in a class or league, a senior citizen dropping by our center there’s something for all ages. PRCE also provides Adult Basic Education opportunities. Whether you dropped out of high school, are looking for a new job or trying to receive your GED, we can help. If you are looking to use a facility, a park shelter or a ball field, we can help.

Parks, Recreation and Community Education understand that “community” extends from neighborhoods to the world. We are flexible enough to meet the needs of a fast-changing society. We can extend the reach of education and bring people together in a common purpose. We like getting people involved in our schools. We can become partners in addressing community needs. We do this by offering a scope of activities and services that evolve with new generations of people and technologies, making the community a learning center open for people of all ages.

Parks, Recreation and Community Education reaches out to be inclusive. Every day it proves that the community and our schools, working together, can be greater than the sum of their individual parts.

Tour HHS – 4/25/19

Tour Hutchinson High School April 25, 2019

The Hutchinson High School will be open to the community for self-guided tours on Thursday, April 25, 2019 from 5:00 to 7:30 pm. Members of the Board of Education, high school students and staff will be available to visit and answer questions.

 

Click Here to View the Hutchinson High School Video Tour

Courtesy of HCVN, Hutchinson Community Video Network

Click Here to Access the Work Zone Camera

2019-2020 Academic School Calendar

The 2019-2020 Academic School Calendar was approved by the Board of Education on April 8, 2019.

Click Here for the 2019-2020 Academic School Calendar

 

 

 

Math & Reading Corps Positions Available

POSITION TITLE: Literacy Tutor – Minnesota Reading Corps

Make a difference in your community and join our team as a reading tutor. Park Elementary is looking for reading tutors to give their time and talent to help our kids become successful readers and learners.

Tutors work one-on-one or in small groups with students during school hours throughout the school year. No matter if you’re a recent grad, career changer, stay-at-home parent or retiree, you can make a great tutor. No experience? No problem. Minnesota Reading Corps provides comprehensive training in strategies proven to help students learn, so tutors are well equipped to help students grow.

Perks as A Tutor

  • Receive a stipend every two weeks.
  • Earn up to $4,200 for college tuition or student loans. Tutors 55 and older may gift the award to their child, grandchild, stepchild or foster child.
  • Free health insurance and child care assistance for those who qualify.

Ready to be the change for struggling students? Learn more at ReadingAndMath.net. Questions can be sent to join@servetogrow.org or call 866.859.2825.


POSITION TITLE: Math Tutor – Minnesota Math Corps

Make a difference in your community and join our team as a math tutor. Park Elementary is looking for math tutors to give their time and talent to help kids become successful in math.

Tutors work one-on-one or in small groups with students during school hours between January – June. No matter if you’re a recent grad, career changer, stay-at-home parent or retiree, you can make a great tutor. No experience? No problem. Math Corps provides comprehensive training in strategies proven to help students learn, so tutors are well equipped to help students grow.

Perks as A Tutor

  • Receive a stipend every two weeks.
  • Earn up to $4,200 for college tuition or student loans. Tutors 55 and older may gift the award to their child, grandchild, stepchild or foster child.
  • Free health insurance and child care assistance for those who qualify.

Ready to be the change for struggling students? Learn more at ReadingAndMath.net. Questions can be sent to join@servetogrow.org or call 866.859.2825.

Walking School Bus – April 10, 2019

Outdoor Play

The Benefits of Outdoor Play for a Child’s Brain and Body
By Anne Broderius, Principal, West Elementary

 

Now that the weather looks like it has finally turned the corner and warmer temperatures and sunshine are on the way, it’s exciting to think about children and adults enjoying more of the outdoors once again. Play is important for a child’s healthy brain and body development and it’s through play that children engage and interact with the world around them. Children explore, take risks, experiment, develop fine and gross motor muscle memory, problem solve, discover, and use imagination all through play. Outdoor play takes children away from excessive TV and computer or video games which has become all to common a form of play. Outdoor play provides an opportunity for important physical activity and children moving their bodies in a fun way that supports many areas of development.

It’s important to encourage different kinds of play. Physical play should be encouraged with opportunities at outdoor playgrounds, lawns, and sidewalks for walking, running, climbing, skipping, rolling, jumping, and biking. These types of play help children develop gross motor skills, balance, and coordination. It’s important to encourage rolling, crawling, climbing, and swinging. Do you remember being a kid and rolling down a hill, playing on a swing set, or riding bike all day long?

Another type of play is constructive play. Constructive play allows children to be creative with all kinds of objects. See how creative children are when given some random materials like wood blocks, pvc pipe, balls, string, boxes, and canisters. Do you remember how much fun it was to play with an old cardboard box as a kid? Sometimes children have more fun with the empty box than with the item that came inside of it.

Children needs lots of opportunity for social play. Providing children a chance to play with other children similar in age is important for development. Through social play, children learn how to share, cooperate, take turns, and express emotions. It’s important an adult is close by observing and supporting the play as needed.  This provides the adult a chance to intervene should children need help with a conflict. Remember to only intervene if necessary as children need opportunities to practice problem solving and resolving conflict independently too.

Games with rules are important as they help develop cognitive and social development. In addition, games with rules provide a chance to practice cooperation, negotiation, and competition. Children have fun making up the rules to familiar games or even games they create on their own.  Adults should encourage, support, and have fun with whatever rules the child comes up with. Remember to balance the amount of games with rules with plenty of free or unstructured play. Follow your child’s lead on this. Some children prefer one type of play over another.

Finally, outdoor play helps to reduce the spread of infections, and improve the immune system just by being in the fresh air. Being outdoors is healthy for all of us. Research shows that exercise helps burns calories, strengthens muscles, and builds healthy bones.  Being outside also provides our bodies with a natural way to build up our vitamin levels and lessens the likelihood of developing chronic diseases.

Play is an important and critical part of childhood and offers so many important developmental benefits. Play is how our children learn. Playing with our children is a great way to engage with and enjoy each of them. Children who are encouraged to play outdoors are more likely to become an adult who enjoys being active in the outdoors. Ask any adult who enjoys hiking, gardening, biking, or jogging when they got started. More than likely they will share a story about a parent or positive role model who supported, modeled, and encourage play and physical activity.

If you’d like to learn more about the importance of play, please join us from 6-7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 30th at the Hutchinson High School Auditorium for an adult forum from the Jeffers Foundation about Nature Play. For more information, contact West Elementary at 320-587-4470.

Help Your Children Branch Out

By Dan Olberg, Park Elementary Principal

One of the beliefs we have at Park Elementary is that everyone is a scientist. We are trying to break the stereotypical image that our students have regarding scientists. Scientists are not just those who dress up in a white lab coats and wear safety glasses all day. Scientists are farmers, cooks, hairdressers, construction workers, and much more. So when a student brought up the fact that moms and dads are scientists, I started to think about how true that statement is – especially as we know more about the brain and how it functions early in life.

Scientifically speaking, if there was one part of the brain that is more important to the intelligence of a child it would have to be the cerebral cortex. That’s where higher cognitive processing occurs. As children learn new things they are essentially changing those neurons, or nerve cells, their structure, and the chemistry in their cerebral cortices.

Human beings get an explosive growth of dendrites in the cerebral cortex, like branches, in their first 8 to 10 years of life. These branches link knowledge and experiences together. Think of it as a tree with branches and leaves. The leaves hold pieces of information and the branches link the information together. As long as new experiences and knowledge continues to filter in, the branches grow and sprout new leaves. Naturally, there is a rapid growth of branches in these early years and it peaks at about the age of 10 when it slowly starts to decrease. At this point the branches that haven’t made connections die off. This process is called pruning. That’s why there’s so much interest today in those first 10 years of life.

So we need to ask ourselves as scientists some very important questions. How can we give children the best experiences for maximum growth? What activities are our children doing that foster brain growth? What activities are our children doing to stifle or limit the growth? What are we doing as parents to engage our children in life experiences? Those questions are not hard to answer; however, acting on them can be more than difficult at times.

So the students had it right, parenting is part science. Our guidance through these important years is scientifically important. The most exciting discovery about all this research is that education should continue for a lifetime. The brain’s capacity for learning and change is limitless, depending on our willingness to seek new experiences and opportunities. Our “trees,” as well as our children’s can continue to fill out and expand with a wide variety of real-world and academic activities. “Branch out” and support children’s continued brain growth.

Online Videos – What Parents Need to Know

You may have heard about issues surrounding YouTube and challenges targeting young children. We wanted to take a moment to share some important child safety information with you through the image linked below. While the “Momo Challenge” has been unverifiable, it is important to be aware of what children are watching through video apps, and nothing is ever guaranteed to be safe. If you have any concerns regarding internet safety for your children, contact the District’s Technology Innovation Specialist Jocelynn Buckentin at 320-234-2716 or jocelynn.buckentin@isd423.org.

What Parents Need to Know about Online Videos

 

 

 

 

Hutchinson Public Schools

Hutchinson Public Schools