MOUNT VERNON — Amazing things happen when Kenyon College students foster the intellectual gifts of elementary school learners.
As part of Kenyon’s Off-campus Activities Program in Psychology, Kenyon College student mentors volunteer to spend time with Knox County elementary school students in grades one through four. Coordinated by Knox County Educational Service Center Consultant for Gifted and Talented Students John Jurkowitz and Kenyon liaisons Anna Wilhelm and Ammanda Somekh, the program pairs mentors with elementary pupils who have been identified as gifted through standardized testing approved by the Ohio Department of Education.
The college mentor first takes time to get acquainted, and discusses topics of interest with the student[s] to help determine a topic for special study. Weekly sessions during school hours are then spent learning about the chosen topic through research, problem-solving activities and project development. At the end of each semester, there is a Kenyon Mentor Tea event at which students formally present their projects to share what they have discovered. The presentations take multiple forms; posters, games, gadgets, models and home videos.
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