A Tuscarawas County preschool is sending kids to numerous organizations across the country via mail delivery…
Okay, so St. Mary’s in Dennison isn’t packaging 4 and 5-year-olds in giant boxes and shipping them per se, but a unique project is giving children a chance to see places they otherwise wouldn’t get to visit.
Ronna Coventry is a Preschool teacher at the school and recently launched the ‘Where Are Our Preschoolers’ project.
“I try to find new and fun ways for the kids to learn,” she explained. “I have always been a hands-on learner and I use that in my classroom. I want them to learn about things outside their boxes. There is an entire world we can learn about and from.”
And so, the children painted several mini people with a picture of their faces pasted on.
Each child took a packet home and their parents chose where to take pictures or who to send it to. Ms. Coventry took additional packets and sent them to local businesses, politicians, sports teams, college and high school friends and she also reached out via social media.
“The response has been great,” she explained. “I have sent out over 50 packets so far plus the 42 that went home with the children. We even sent one to President Trump and LeBron James.”
In all, packets are making their way to places around the world calling on recipients to take one of their ‘mini preschoolers’ and take a picture with them at work, a special location, during a fun activity, to a historic place or to meet a special person.
Each packet includes a mini ‘me’, a letter from Ms. Coventry and a letter from the student that explains the project and thanks the recipient for participating.
The recipients are asked to write a little about the place or person and send it back to the school by email or by US mail.
“When we receive them we talk about the details of the place or persona and look at the picture(s),” added Ms. Coventry. “The children are loving it!”
Ms. Coventry added she also takes photos of the children holding the pictures they received and publishes those to Facebook so the community and their families can see them. The photos also are displayed in the classroom.
She explained the overall goal of the project is simply to allow her students to learn about people and places in a fun way.
“Places they may never go or places they have gone [to] and then they can share what they know about the place. I just want the children to learn and have fun while learning,” said Ms. Coventry.
She said the response has been great. “It seems like every day we get at least one response. The kids seem to love the project. I think because they are involved in the learning. They are so proud when they get a response. We have received pictures from England!”
Also, she explained how excited the students get when they get the mail or when she reads and shares the pictures.
“The expressions are so cute when they see their “mini” somewhere.”
Ms. Coventry noted how humbled she is by the outpouring of support and participation in the project.
“I love how willing people are to help or participate in projects I do with my class,” she explained. “My parents are great and always willing to go the extra mile. Also, when I reach out through social media for help it amazes me the people who step up.”
“When it comes to my class and our school I could go on and on.”
(Ethan and Emma Douglas at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.)
(Brady Henry went to school (New Phila) with his mom. He visited the principal, the school Elf and a group of students)
(Brielle Lindsay poses with Miss Clayland, an Elf on the Polar Express, and even ate at the Dennison Yard.)
(Bennett Miller visited the Superior Clay Corporation)
Michaela Madison Reporting