BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - A Biloxi program is getting children geared up for kindergarten. It's called the Countdown to Kindergarten Readiness Fair. Dozens of children and their parents showed up at Lopez Elementary on Thursday for this year's fair. The event is designed for future students to learn what it's like to start "real school."
"We want the parents to be comfortable in knowing that the school districts or schools where the children attend will take care of their children," said Dr. Janice Wilson, who is the Assistant Superintendent for Biloxi Elementary Schools.
The children and their parents are given a skills card when they come in. First, they make their way around the gym doing activities that require them to use shape recognition and fine motor skills.
"It kind of lets the parents know where your kids are, and what they need to work on before they start kindergarten. It kind of helps the kids learn a bit and see how the first day is kind of going to be, "said parent Latasha Metcalfe.
Next, the children get to go through the cafeteria and learn how to pick out foods and carry their own tray. Lastly, and for many most importantly, they learn how to safely ride the school bus.
Metcalfe, like most parents, are skeptical of putting their little ones on a school bus, but a demonstration sponsored by Biloxi Public Schools Transportation Department, taught the students how to get on and off the bus safely.
"We want the parents to be comfortable in knowing that the school districts or schools where the children attend will take care of their children," said Wilson.
The readiness fair is sponsored by the City of Biloxi, Biloxi Public Schools, IP Casino and the Biloxi Excel by 5 Program.