Helping Children Become Citizens of their Local Community

This month, the students at Hot Spots Extended Care Programs learned about their home state of Maryland. Here, the education professionals at Hot Spots provide additional information and detail activities that can reinforce this knowledge at home.

Through a balance of guided lessons, fun activities and intellectual challenges, students at Hot Spots Extended Care Program spent the month of March learning about their home state of Maryland. HSECP Students were provided with lessons each week that incorporated everything from Maryland sports to state symbols. These lessons, along with interactive activities to reinforce students’ learning, help to spark a desire in the students to be invested citizens, not only in their state, but also in their national and global community.

Curriculum that Instills Values as Well as Knowledge

The Hot Spots Local Community lessons did more than give students a basic understanding of the important features of the state, it instilled in them a desire to be more involved in their communities, and to take pride in the state in which they reside. The lessons also helped students develop empathy for their peers, neighbors and the environment. Teaching children to appreciate all the different components of their state at an early age helps them accept and appreciate the wider range of people, places and ideas they will face as they grow older. By instilling these principles in our children early, they learn the value of caring for their community and its citizens as an adult.

The students at Hot Spots Extended Care Programs spent March studying a variety of topics such as:

Maryland Sports – Classes discussed Maryland’s major sports teams, like the Baltimore Ravens and Orioles as well as sports like lacrosse and jousting. Learning about Maryland’s official teams and state sports gave students the chance to become not only more culturally aware, but also to learn about the value of teamwork and healthy competition.

Maryland State Symbols – Students also spent the month learning about important state symbols like the white oaks, Black-Eyed Susans, Baltimore orioles, blue crabs, and rockfish. Through these lessons, they not only developed an understanding of how to recognize these symbols, but learned about the significance of caring for and preserving Maryland’s flora and fauna through awareness and preservation. Such lessons influence students to respect their community and the environment in which it exists. They also encourage students to take steps to make sure they are leaving the natural world a better, cleaner place, so that future generations can enjoy Maryland’s state symbols too.

The Chesapeake Bay –  The study of the Chesapeake Bay was an important component of March’s lessons. Educators planned lessons and activities that taught students the cause and effect cycle involved in environmental pollution and rehabilitation. Learning about the Bay’s ecosystems not only fascinated students scientifically, but encouraged them to be more aware of how pollution, a changing climate, and industrialization can impact the Chesapeake Bay, and the natural world at large. These lessons about cause and effect cycles also translate into student’s personal lives, by helping them understand that every action has either a positive or negative consequence, and these consequences will have impacts on their lives and the lives of others.

Monuments and Places of Maryland – Throughout the month, students were given valuable education in Maryland’s history and geography through lessons on significant monuments and locations throughout the state. These lessons taught students to both pinpoint where the monument or place was on the state map, and explain how it came to be and why it is an important part of Maryland’s history. Such lessons help to develop a passion for history in students by giving them a foundation to understand their present and future through events of the past. Hot Spots Educators also taught student about places where they can continue to learn more, such as the Maryland Science Center, the Visionary Arts Museum, and the National Aquarium.

Through March’s Local Community Lessons, the educators at Hot Spots Extended Care Program hope that, as the students age and mature, these values will be carried with them, encouraging them to become active and passionate citizens.

Hot Spots Extended Care Program builds custom curriculum which introduces students to nontraditional learning experiences while enhancing what they are already learning in Maryland schools. Each program works with its host school to structure curriculum based on the goals of the institution and the needs of its students. If you are interested in learning more about the opportunities offered through Hot Spots Extended Care Programs, or speaking to a Hot Spots representative about implementing the program at your school, contact us today!