Event to prepare parents, children for kindergarten

Erin Rowley is the Program Assistant at the Centre County Community Foundation.

Because of Countdown to Kindergarten, I now have something I almost certainly wouldn’t ever have otherwise – a picture of myself with Dora the Explorer.

But the annual Countdown to Kindergarten, which takes place tomorrow (Saturday, Feb. 4) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Nittany Mall, by the J.C. Penney Court, is much more than live-action cartoon characters. As a former intern with Smart Start – Centre County, the organization that sponsors it, last year I helped staff the event, which helps parents of 3-5-year-olds learn more about their kindergarten options. Representatives from public schools, private schools, and local support agencies will be on hand to answer questions and help parents decide what the best kindergarten option is for them and their children.

It also provides prize drawings and fun activities for the kids to take part in while their parents peruse the displays. This year’s theme for the activities is health and nutrition.

Me (far left) with Dora Explorer during the 2011 Countdown to Kindergarten

This event is NOT kindergarten registration; it’s simply a way to help parents and children prepare for the big transition to school.

Check out Smart Start’s website for more information about helping children prepare for kindergarten, and come out on Saturday to meet one-on-one with experts who will help you choose which options are right for your child.


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