Hands-on classes fill College for Kids

The 2013 Junior Rangers class from the College for Kids in Rangely, led by Ranger Jennifer Walgrave, center, show off new patches at the East Four Mile Draw Site in the Canyon Pintado National Historic District.
The 2013 Junior Rangers class from the College for Kids in Rangely, led by Ranger Jennifer Walgrave, center, show off new patches at the East Four Mile Draw Site in the Canyon Pintado National Historic District.
RANGELY I Four elementary-geared courses in CNCC’s College For Kids program nearly doubled their attendance compared to last summer’s turnout, CNCC community education coordinator Angie Miller said.
Approximately 40 children participated in the program, now in its second year. Many kids — choosing from the Junior Eagles aviation class, Junior Rangers program, Mad Scientists lab or Imagi-Nation Art class – opted for multiple sessions.
Miller said this year’s schedule also attracted a wider range of attendees.
“We saw kids of people new to town, children of students who will be attending CNCC and kids just visiting from out of town,” Miller said.
Rangely resident Becky Hume said her 7-year-old granddaughter, Adywen Meeks, was initially hesitant to attend the Junior Eagles class Monday morning. But when it came time to take a short flight around Rangely, she was more than ready to jump on board.
“She said, ‘I call shotgun!’ and got to ride in the front of the plane,” Hume said. “She just loved it.”
Mom Laurie Hume said that Adywen, who took all four College For Kids classes, also enjoyed the Junior Rangers nature hunt and a vinegar and baking soda science experiment that blew up a paper bag.
“I didn’t expect them to do so much,” Hume said. “The Junior Rangers went on a hike and she found everything (in the field guide) — the petroglyphs, the birds. She’s definitely a nature girl.”
While the Junior Eagles class enrollment was filled to capacity, other programs also had solid turnouts, Miller said.
“It’s the hands-on aspect that really works,” said CNCC safe campus coordinator Christine Herrera, who headed up Imagi-Nation Art and helped CNCC residence life coordinator Michelle Holland with the Mad Scientists course. “The kids are able to learn and play at the same time.”
Two of three middle school courses new to College For Kids this year — a book discussion club and basketball camp — were cancelled due to low enrollment, while the middle school volleyball camp ran this week.
Miller said she would like to offer middle school courses again and is open to parent and student suggestions.
Next year’s College For Kids will focus on even more elementary-geared courses, including a class or two for children in the 4- and 5-year-old age groups.
There will also be some return classes from this summer’s offering and other first-year course, including a popular Creepy Crawlers session, making a comeback next year.
Miller said College For Kids is one of the best parts of her job.
“I love working with little kids,” she said. “They get so jazzed about it all. And I love hearing parents say their kids had a good time and learned something along the way.”