Community Highlight: Countdown to Kindergarten

A child’s transition to kindergarten can sometimes be confusing—especially for parents. It is often difficult to know where to turn for the right information and resources to help prepare their children (and themselves) for this big next step.

To help, the Children’s Museum of Winston-Salem, the Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools Ready Schools team, and The Forsyth Promise joined together to host Countdown to Kindergarten in January. This event gathered staff from the school system and organizations serving families with young children to talk with parents directly about how they can help their children succeed in school.

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“We want people to learn early about their options, how to navigate through that process, and also start to think about what they could be doing over the next several months to start preparing their child for school,” said the museum’s Director of Education Christine Simonson.

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The Great Expectations team was thrilled to attend this community collaboration, which showcased the power of schools, community members, and nonprofits working together to prepare children for success. Alongside practical advice from school system staff, parents were exposed to opportunities for bilingual education and information about proper early childhood nutrition. 

Jennifer Grocki, a parent from Forsyth County, summed up her experience stating, “It’s nice to have it all in one area and to be able to talk to them one-on-one.” 

Also present were volunteers from West Forsyth High and Reagan High guiding children through the “lunch line” and sharing what kindergarten was like for them. For parent Clarence Roberson, who attended the event with his young son, social experiences like Countdown to Kindergarten are important for the bright future he envisions for his child.  “We’re shooting for the moon with him,” Robinson said with pride. 

Now, after attending the event, his family has better access to the resources, contacts, and community support that can make it happen.

Read more information about the event here. To learn more and connect to resources, reach out to one of the many Great Expectations grantees that participated, including Imprints Cares, Work Family Resource Center, and the Winston-Salem Forsyth County School System