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Camp Hopdina: A jump-start into kindergarten

Students work together using construction paper, glue and scissors during craft time.

For the past two weeks, students from the Hopkins and Edina Public School systems have come together for the first ever Camp Hopdina. With the primary goal of preparing students for their upcoming adjustment into kindergarten, this literacy-based program offered an early start to develop the skills needed to be successful at school.

“It’s a lot different than Pre-K,” said Shelly Doran, classroom teacher at the Edina Family Center and coordinator of Camp Hopdina. “It’s more so getting a jump-start so that they are ready for kindergarten,” she said.

The program bussed children to and from Alice Smith Elementary and also provided them with breakfast and lunch, giving the students the opportunity to excel in the everyday tasks of being a young student.

From learning how to find their bus, go through the lunch line or walk quietly in the hallways, the soon-to-be kindergartners have been equipped with the skills that will already be taught within the first month of school this fall.  

In addition to the camp’s daily lessons and activities, the staff sent home supplementary math and literacy folders.

“One thing that has been great has been the progress they have made from the first day to now,” said Doran. “They have achieved so many academic, social and emotional readiness goals.”