The Alignment Collaborative for Education and School District U-46 will host over 2,700 8th graders and 100 plus business and community professionals to introduce students to more than 75 careers on October 7th. Thank you to our career professionals and our sponsoring organizations for offering this opportunity to our U-46 students.
Alignment Collaborative Selected as Featured Charity
Bear Family and City of Elgin Police Softball Game
September 13, 2021, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
Alignment is excited to be the featured charity for the Bear Family and Elgin Police Charity Softball Game rescheduled for September 13th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at the Elgin Sports Complex. Our partners, the Bear Family and the City of Elgin Police, will donate all proceeds from concessions and the 50/50 raffle to Alignment’s work in our schools and the community.
Your donation via our website of just $10 to the 50/50 Raffle benefits our earliest learners and our middle and high school students as they prepare for academic and career success. Raffle tickets will also be available at the event.
We look forward to seeing you!
A new program in Elgin makes it possible for kids to enjoy the outdoors and read a book at the same time.
The Elgin Partnership for Early Learning (EPEL) and Alignment Collaborative for Education hosted their first StoryWalk on Thursday at Lords Park. The StoryWalk features a picture book broken down by pages and mounted on metal frames along a path. Kids walk from page to page to read the story. The book is offered in English on one side and Spanish on the other.
“The thing I like about a StoryWalk is that it’s an innovative way to explore literature and not just your regular book,” said Amber Peters, executive director of EPEL. “It gets you out in nature, which I think is important for kids because you learn through being outside and in the community.”
EPEL is a nonprofit organization working to ensure children have access to quality early care and education in Elgin and the surrounding neighborhoods. It partners with other area stakeholders to provide resources, early childhood initiatives, information, and support for families and providers for children under 5 years of age.
Four stories were chosen by the Gail Borden Public Library to use on the StoryWalks, each with about 18 pages. Peters said the library chose stories that were culturally and linguistically responsive and inclusive, while offering readers colorful pages to interact with while building critical kindergarten reading skills and boosting brain development.
Reaching young kids before they start their formal schooling is important, said Kathleen Cox, director of early learning for Elgin Area School District U-46. She also sits on EPEL’s board.
“Eighty-five percent of a child’s brain development happens before their fifth birthday, so the more work the school district does partnering with child care providers to get the same message out about language development and social skills, the stronger all of our kids are going to be when they come in to school.”
Copyright issues prevented EPEL from using reproductions of the pages, so they bought a couple of copies of each book and broke them down, laminated the pages and mounted them on boards that are inserted in the frames that can be stuck in the grass. The program is funded by a collaborative partner grant written to Making Kane County Fit for Kids, Kiwanis of Elgin, and Elgin Township.
The plan is to have story walks where their audience is already gathered, be it block parties, city events, or, like Thursday, near a Gail Borden story time at Lords Park Zoo. Peters said people can reserve the StoryWalk materials for family parties or school events. “They’re for the community to use,” she said.
Peters said StoryWalks is a perfect fit for EPEL’s “learning on the go” model.
“These movable story walks allow us to relocate them to different locations during the year,” she said. “Anywhere you go, there’s opportunity to learn. It’s just a matter of you engaging the child.”
By Rick West
Original story appeared in the Daily Herald 8/6/2021 5:08 PM
Throughout this summer, 15 students from the City of Elgin are participating in an internship with the City. The students will be working on municipal assignments and other projects related to STEM. In addition to their summer internships with the City, the Gail Borden Public Library (GBPL) and Alignment offered a workshop for resume development and review and mock interviews with local HR professionals.
On behalf of Alignment, we’d like to offer our gratitude to the City of Elgin and the GBPL for their support and providing work-based learning opportunities for the students of the community.
Alignment and EPEL, in partnership with School District U-46, kicked off the Summer Learning on the Go program the week of June 7th. The program has grown to five locations and takes place from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm with weekly early educational activities in all locations, along with food distribution to families. The weekly schedule includes:
Monday – Buena Vista Neighborhood & Cornerstone Park
Tuesday – Parkwood Elementary School
Wednesday – River’s Landing Neighborhood
Thursday – Century Oaks Elementary School
Nancy Coleman, Alignment’s Executive Director is excited about the growth in the programs this summer. “Through our partnership with EPEL, their early education experts are serving roughly 120 kids per week, across all five locations. Our goal is to provide engaging educational opportunities that will prepare and get the children excited about learning and the upcoming school year.” School District U-46’s Food Services has also been highly supportive, distributing family food boxes each week at Buena Vista, Parkwood, River’s Landing and Century Oaks. Cornerstone is benefiting from the City of Elgin Parks Program and food services from the Northern Illinois Food Bank.
The program in all five parks will continue through the end of July. Both Alignment and EPEL greatly appreciate the grant received from Elgin Township to help fund this program for the children of our community.
On Tuesday, June 8, members of the Streamwood Park District joined forces with Alignment Collaborative for Education to kick off “Learning on the Go”, a summer reading program.
After the success of the inaugural program in 2020, which was held at Kiddie Corner Park, 2021’s edition was moved to a larger, more drive-up friendly location at Parkwood Elementary in Hanover Park.
Children between the ages of 0-8 and their parents are invited to join the weekly event for story time and a parent/child activity. A free grab-n-go lunch, sponsored by School District U-46, will be provided for the children. Learning on the Go takes place every Tuesday from June 8 through July 27 between 10:30 am, and 12:30 pm. Parkwood Elementary is located at 2150 Laurel Avenue in Hanover Park.
On June 8, 98 boxes of food, equivalent to feeding 490 children, were distributed. Over 30 children participated this first week in the summer reading program.
Nancy Coleman of Alignment Collaborative for Education said, “So glad to kick off Learning on the Go at Parkwood Elementary School in Hanover Park. With the partnership of the Streamwood Park District, School District U-46, Elgin Partnership for Early Learning, Streamwood Police Department, and Poplar Creek Library, the community has come together to serve a purpose that aligns with each of their missions.”
“What a fantastic day to start off the Summer Reading Program. The Alignment Collaborative for Education, School District U-46, Poplar Creek Library, and the Streamwood Police Department help prepare our children to succeed. The number of families and children who participated in the educational activities at Parkwood Elementary School today exceed my first week’s expectations. It is great to see people out and kids learning through play.”- Streamwood Park District Executive Director Jeff Janda.
Lisa Fabris, Children Services Assistant Manager at Poplar Creek Library said, “It is great to see so many community agencies come together during the summer to encourage families to learn together, read together, and have fun together.”
“Today was special because you got to interact with the kids instead of just dropping off a box of food and a few books like we did last year. I hope we can do even more after we enter into Phase 5.” – Streamwood Park District Park Board Commissioner Bill Wright.
Recreation Manager Cindy Babicz said, “The term “It takes a Village” is what today is all about. Working with and seeing so many organizations come together for the betterment of our community and our children is what makes me love what I do.”
For more information on the “Learning On the Go” program, please contact Alignment Collaborative for Education Executive Director Nancy Coleman at 224.227.7534 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT STREAMWOOD PARK DISTRICT
The Streamwood Park District serves over 40,000 Streamwood residents, offering hundreds of seasonal programs. Ranging from fitness, aquatics, youth, and adult athletics, the Streamwood Park District strives to accommodate the diverse Streamwood community on a daily basis with a multitude of programs, events, and classes.
The Streamwood Park District has been serving the Streamwood community since 1966.
This article was published in the Daily Herald on June 9, 2021.