DISD's 'Thriving Minds Summer Camp' Targets At-Risk Students - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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DISD's 'Thriving Minds Summer Camp' Targets At-Risk Students



    The Dallas Independent School District offers a program called "Thriving Minds Summer Camp" to reach at-risk students in the district and get them excited about learning. (Published Friday, July 18, 2014)

    School leaders say taking your kids to the museum or zoo during the summer is a good way to help your kids continue to learn during the summer.

    For parents who work or can't afford trips like that, the Dallas Independent School District is offering a program to bring those summer experiences to the classroom.

    Principal Gracie Walker said the "Thriving Minds Summer Camp" at Jimmie Tyler Brashear Elementary School is a hands-on learning experience that gets kids excited about learning.

    "Everybody's like 'I'm going to camp,'" Walker said.

    The Wallace Foundation with support from Big Thought, a local non-profit arts enrichment provider, sponsors the month-long enrichment program.

    The program is only open to at-risk students in the district.

    The day starts in the classroom, but in the afternoon they do things like learn to play an instrument, make butter, or other engaging activities.

    Teachers say learning outside of textbooks helps the students grow.

    "Everybody learns differently and that's why we needed this program because the kids all learn differently, they all soak in information in a different way," Walker said.

    DISD said this is part of a two-year effort to help these students learn by engaging in activities that are enjoyable.

    “Some of them, probably not all, but majority of them need some more exposure. More exposure, more experiences so I can get there to get ready for first grade,” teacher Basilica Andrade said.

    The camp also serves students free breakfast and lunch throughout the summer.

    Students in this program range from kindergarten to 5th grade. The camp runs until July 31.