By Rachel Belle
When you’re in kindergarten, your school career has just begun. Everything is new and fresh and fun. The paste tastes great and you might even get to take a nap. So what better time to introduce kids to the college experience? To keep them motivated all the way through high school and beyond? One hundred and fifty kindergartners from the Kent School District toured Seattle Pacific University on Tuesday, and learned a bit about college life.
“College is a big place that you learn in it,” says kindergartner Asal. “When you grow up, the big kids can teach you how to do some stuff and you can learn a lot of stuff in college.”
I asked Asal what she’d like to study in school.
“I want to learn how to make noise. That means, you can make noise everywhere.”
The kids got to do a science experiment, read some books and take a tour.
“They were so excited to see the dorms,” says Kent substitute teacher Michelle Dudgeon. “I don’t think they understood that you get to live at the school when you go to the school. They’re having a blast.”
She thinks this experience will stick with the kids through their school career.
“There are so many students who aren’t making it through high school. Just getting them excited about it, making sure they get to see what it actually is like. Two of them said, ‘I don’t think they have any recess at this school!’ I thought, ‘They sure don’t!'”
Before they left, all the kids made a pledge that someday they would return to higher learning. They repeated after an SPU official:
“I promise to do well in school. To listen to my teachers. To help my parents. To graduate from high school. To go on to college!”
Even though SPU intended to send out a general message about the benefits of college, the tour did turn out to be some pretty good PR.
“I want to go to this exact same college because it’s so much fun!” said 5-year-old Taylor.
“I want to go to this college too, because I love this college!” Asal agreed.