Students at Renfrew and District Christian School (RDCS) had a chance to learn some unique skills, including cake decorating and orienteering, this past year.
Several parents, grandparents, and community-members volunteered to teach these skills a few hours weekly in May.
“It was a nice way to get parents involved and grandparents involved and the community involved,” says Principal Sabrina Vandersleen.
“And it was a nice break for the kids. They always look forward to something different and they learned something they wouldn’t otherwise learn.”
Earlier in the year Vandersleen put out a request asking if parents or others would be interested in volunteering to teach a subject of their choice a few hours a week. She heard back from several.
Susan Phillips, a parent, has taken several courses in cake decorating and offered to help the Grades 5 and 6 students learn some of the basics of icing cakes.
Kathryn Bossy owns a craft store in Renfrew and spent several weeks teaching the Grades 3 to 6 students the art of making crafts. The students created a decorative mirror lined with beads, among other things.
A father and daughter team, Hubert Huyer and Valerie Riopelle, offered an outdoor education program for Grades 7 and 8. They took the students to their home in the country and taught canoeing skills and safety. They also did some orienteering, which is a running sport involving navigation with maps and compasses.
“A lot of our Grade 7 and 8 students are outdoorsy and athletic, so they really enjoyed doing the outdoor activities, tromping through the bush and going canoeing,” says Vandersleen.
She says the electives program was a success overall, based on feedback from the students.
“They loved it.”
RDCS has been in operation since 1985.