Be There: Play and Learn

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | email | Twitter

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - The students at the Teenage Parenting Program in Muscogee County are not only learning the curriculum, but they are learning to be parents as teachers prepare them for both those lessons.

When the Preschool teachers at TAP plan lessons for their young students, they also have to incorporate the children's parents, who are students themselves.

In this week's "Be There" we see how you can have fun with your young kids and teach them at the same time.

During the school day at the Teenage Parenting Center, mothers and their young children gather for a combined lesson plan.

Pre-K teacher Gabi Patterson explained, "The moms and kids come in together and spend time and they learn how to interact with their children and it gives moms some ideas for things that are fun learning for their children."

When News Leader Nine visited the school, the activity involved using winter scenes to teach children about colors and shapes.

"We had to cover out tray with whipped cream and hide objects, then uncover them and see if they could tell us what was on the picture or tell us what colors were on there," Monica Lopez said. She is an 11th grade student and the mother of one of the Pre-K students.

Patterson tells us the classroom interaction helps both sets of students, "It's going to help this age group with learning and enjoying school more and be able to go on and on. And it gives the moms -- young moms or older parents -- more time to spend with their child."

The young kids seemed to enjoy the activity. Lopez said her son caught on quickly, "He learned pretty fast -- colors and objects and stuff. It really interested him."

And the mother's enjoyed it as well.

"Me personally, if I enjoy learning and it's fun, its easier to learn and you will remember," Lopez added.

Patterson says an added bonus is that these activities can easily be taken from school to home, "If we can give them things to do at home that are quick and easy and you don't have to spend any money on it and find things at home... It helps."

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