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College for Kids Brings Young Students to Kent State at East Liverpool

Posted June 26, 2011

Future Iron Chef competitors, environmentalists, college professors and zoologists in grades one through sixth are at Kent State University at East Liverpool this week as part of the campus’ College for Kids. The weeklong “college” hosts an array of classes including Kid’s Café Cooking School, Amazing Animals and Math Magic.

Instructor Lauren O'Donnell works with participants in Kent State University at East Liverpool's College for Kids.
Instructor Lauren O'Donnell works with participants in
Kent State University at East Liverpool's College for Kids.

“The kids are very interested in learning new skills,” says Lauren O’Donnell, who is teaching Green Up/It Matters, which focuses on environmental initiatives, along with Kid’s Café. “We do a lot of hands-on activities, and they want to do everything!” O’Donnell says in Kid’s Café, she is teaching 9-, 10- and 11-year-olds proper table etiquette, table manners, food safety and nutrition while helping them prepare different “kid-friendly” meals.

“The kids created their own restaurant with its own name, logo and menu,” she says. “Later in the week, they'll practice hosting and playing waiter and waitress.”

Kid-friendly meals include French toast, salsa and quesadillas, fruit parfaits, veggie pizza and no-bake cookies.

During each of the five day classes, O’Donnell helps her students make two meals. “We tried to pick meals that the kids could make themselves with a little bit of supervision,” she says.

Program Coordinator Sondra O’Donnell said that when looking at the events available to children this summer, she didn’t see a lot of fun, educational programs available in the area. “College for Kids gives our local children interesting and engaging activities that promote learning, while at the same time being engaging and fun,” she says. “Plus, due to the generosity of the East Liverpool and Salem Rotary Clubs, along with private donors, we’re able to give numerous scholarships to students who perhaps would otherwise be unable to attend.”

College for Kids is a cross-campus event that is also being held during the summer at Kent State University at Salem and Kent State University at Tuscarawas. Between Kent State East Liverpool and Kent State Salem, more than 80 students attended the summer classes. Additional classes held between the two campuses include: Amazing Animals, which explores children's books based on unique animals; Math Magic, which uses M&Ms to help students work their “magic” through addition and subtraction; Marketing for Young Entrepreneurs, which encourages students to create products and design advertisements and logos to market their new business; and Trip Around the World, where students “visit” other countries to learn about different people, food, traditions and culture.