Kids say they’re having a blast at the 21st Century Program summer program 2008 with a host of activities going on at all times.
Christa Lucero, a West Las Vegas High School senior, along with other high school and college students, help certified teachers administer the program and are picking up paychecks during their summer vacation.
“I love working with the kids. It’s a blast, and they always put a smile on my face,” Lucero said.
Elaine Martinez-Gonzalez, the program director, said there’s a lot of physical fitness classes that get the blood pumping while the children are having a good time.
In the inline skate class, kids can play hockey or maneuver through traffic cones. Dance Dance Revolution is only one of the dance classes offered where kids follow dance move instructions from a big screen.
Martinez-Gonzalez said the Carol White Fun and Fitness grant serves both school districts, including a program at Valley School, with a ton of activities. She said the Carol White Fun and Fitness grant encourages physical activity and noted that the program is also administered during the regular school year.
Children in the healthy foods class were learning how to make pineapple agua fresca and cherry limeade drinks with fresh ingredients. Armijo Elementary first-grader Javier Cordova and his classmates were licking their lips in anticipation.
Martinez-Gonzalez said there’s also exercise for the mind where kids can play chess, play the Jeopardy game and learn to pay guitar.
Nutrition is also a component of the summer program with a healthy breakfast and lunch, and on Thursdays, children take home a sack lunch.
“This summer, we are giving each child a bag of food to take home. This is going on through out the city with both the East and West school districts giving out about 500 individual bags of food to the kids,” Martinez-Gonzalez said.
Martinez-Gonzalez said this is the last year of funding for the three-year grant, but she and others are looking for other sources to fund the program.