Horizons at Warner Kicks off 6th Year of Summer Learning and Fun for City School Students on River Campus

2015 Horizons studentsThe University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education will host 135 city school students for the sixth consecutive summer of Horizons at Warner Program, which takes place June 30 to August 7 on River Campus in LeChase Hall.
The summer enrichment program serves students in kindergarten through eighth grade at John James Audubon School 33 and other Rochester City Schools by providing them with meaningful and authentic learning experiences outside the traditional classroom in an effort to prevent summer learning loss. Horizons at Warner includes a diverse set of informal learning activities to support the participants’ development of basic skills in literacy and math (as documented by pre-post standardized tests), along with self-esteem and social-emotional growth and healthy lifestyle choices.
“For six weeks each summer, we give city students an academic jumpstart,” said Lynn Gatto, executive director of Horizons, who also directs the elementary teacher education program at the Warner School, “and their experiences here keep them excited to return each summer.”
Modeled after the Horizons national approach to summer learning, the full-day summer enrichment  program runs from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. each weekday for six full weeks of learning and fun. The program, which combines academic, social, cultural, wellness, and recreational activities to engage, stimulate, and challenge urban children to learn and grow, is led by certified teachers (many of whom are Warner alumni), education majors from local colleges, and high school students who serve as teaching assistants.
2015 Horizons studentsHorizons at Warner is designed to allow new students to enroll into the new kindergarten class every year and current Horizons students to return each summer for high-quality academics blended with arts, sports, cultural enrichment, field trips, and confidence-building activities. Swimming is also a key component of the Horizons at Warner student experience. Every student takes part in daily swim lessons, helping them to make tremendous gains in self-confidence that will carry over into the classroom during the school year. 
Horizons students make enormous gains in academics and confidence and return to school better prepared for the year ahead. Each summer, Horizons students gain two to three months in reading and math skills instead of experiencing the two to three month loss typical for low-income kids during the summer. In partnership with the Rochester Center for Community Leadership, Horizons at Warner also offers year-round tutoring for Horizons students in kindergarten through third grade.
The theme of Horizons at Warner this summer is pollution solutions. Most activities, including daily math and reading instruction and weekly field trips, will relate to the pollution prevention theme. With the help of a new grant from the New York State Pollution Prevention Institute, known as NYSP21, Horizons at Warner has launched a project called Rain Gardens for Youth Empowerment and Pollution Prevention, where Horizons students will plant and maintain a newly installed rain garden, near the Lyman Outdoor Tennis Courts, on River Campus this summer while learning about protecting the environment through water conservation and pollution prevention efforts.
New this year, Horizons at Warner will host an open house for University employees to meet the executive director, enjoy a light breakfast, and experience the Horizons program first-hand through tours led by student ambassadors of Horizons. The open house will take place on Thursday, July 30, from 9:15 to 11:30 a.m., in LeChase Hall on River Campus.
2015 Horizons studentsThe first Horizons affiliate nationwide to be housed on a college/university campus, Horizons at Warner is one of three Horizons affiliates in the Rochester area today. The summer program is funded through donations from individuals, organizations, and foundations, including the Marie C. & Joseph C. Wilson Foundation, Daisy Marquis Jones Foundation, Max and Marian Farash Charitable Foundation, United Way of Greater Rochester, Rochester Area Community Foundation, City of Rochester Department of Recreation and Youth Services, Rochester City School District, and Horizons National.
Horizons National is a network of transformational, community-centered education programs that put children on a path to success in school and life. Horizons programs are closing the opportunity gap for low-income children by providing a high-quality learning experience outside of the traditional school year. A child typically starts at Horizons the summer before kindergarten and returns year after year. Days at Horizons include academics with an emphasis on literacy, STEM, and art in small classes led by professional teachers. For more information, visit www.horizonsnational.org.
To learn more about Horizons at Warner or for daily updates and photos, visit the Horizons at Warner/University of Rochester Facebook.
About the Warner School of Education
Founded in 1958, the University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education (www.warner.rochester.edu) offers master’s and doctoral degree programs in teaching and curriculum, school leadership, higher education, educational policy, counseling, human development, and health professions education. The Warner School of Education offers an accelerated option for its EdD programs that allows eligible students to earn a doctorate in education in as few as three years part time while holding a professional job in the same field. The Warner School of Education is recognized both regionally and nationally for its tradition of preparing practitioners and researchers to become leaders and agents of change in schools, universities, and community agencies; generating and disseminating research; and actively participating in education reform. 
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Tags: Horizons, Horizons at Warner, Lynn Gatto, summer camp, summer enrichment, summer learning