Ridgewood Elementary hosts JA in a Day program

| January 22, 2016

WEST LAFAYETTE – Ridgewood Elementary students in kindergarten through third grade learned a little about what life is like outside the classroom on Friday, Jan. 22 during the fifth annual JA in a Day program. The goal of the Junior Achievement program is to prepare and empower students for the global economy for life after school. Students learned about financial literacy, workplace readiness, and entrepreneurship.

During the program, students learned about the difference between wants and needs, first graders focused on themselves and the world around them, second graders learned about their role in their family and the family’s role in the community, and third graders focused on the community as a whole.

In the second grade classes, each group opened their own donut shop, complete with real donuts, and learned about zoning laws within a community and taxes.

“They are learning how to operate their own donut factory and how a good product versus a defective product leads to more business,” said Judd Bone, who was one of the 30 volunteers at JA in a Day. “They are learning about product quality.”

He said the energy in the classroom has been high all morning and that it’s been fun teaching them about concepts they’ve never thought about before.

“It’s been a ball,” he said. “It’s been so much fun. The energy in the classroom has been great. I volunteered last year as an assistant and kind of got my feet wet. Even from a secondary chair standpoint, it was fun. Any time you can watch kids get excited about something they’re not familiar with, it’s fun.”

During the day, there were 16 classrooms hosting the program with two volunteers in each classroom but two.

“The people we have volunteering today are leaders in the community,” said Helene Moncman, district manager of Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio. “We have great community representatives here. My hope is that all the volunteers today will see the beauty of the program and engage it in Coshocton. My hope is also to expand the program in the upper grades at West Lafayette.”

Usually, the Junior Achievement program goes into schools once a week to teach the program, but Ridgewood Elementary has chosen to do each session in one day.

“By using Junior Achievement, we can emphasize financial literacy and the need for careers,” said Principal Brian Rentsch. “It helps them get exposure to beyond becoming a school teacher because that’s what they see right now.”

Superintendent of Ridgewood Schools, John Marks was also present for the program.

“I think the community sees the school in a different light by coming in and teaching,” said Marks. “It gives the kids positive feedback from the community. It takes special timing and a little bit of risk, but what you achieve has a lasting impression on the kids. It’s something other than what they read in their textbooks.”

To learn more about the Junior Achievement program, visit juniorachievement.org.

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About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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