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Preschoolers learn while playing at library field trip

Cary Ashby • May 8, 2019 at 5:00 PM

WILLARD — Hannah Vogel is doing her first undergraduate field experience with the Willard City Schools preschool program.

On Monday that meant helping youngsters make a butterfly during a field trip to the library. As part of her junior internship through BGSU Firelands, Vogel considers that experience part of “taking it all in.”

“I’ve always liked the younger ages,” said the 2016 South Central graduate who is majoring in inclusive early childhood, essentially a double-major in special and regular education covering pre-kindergarten through third grade.

“They still love school and want to make you happy.”

The preschoolers had the opportunity to make crafts, have a snack and play with library-owned tablets Monday. Youth services manager Charlotte Cunningham read to the classes taught by Kali Beck and Renee White. Also with the preschoolers during the two sessions at the Willard Memorial Library were education assistants Kim Blanchard and Angie Gahring and special education teachers Jamie Baker and Amber Christie.

“To me, playing is an important part of learning,” said Cunningham, who hopes the preschoolers will learn what resources are available at the library. “What they don’t realize is everything they’re doing is learning.”

The library experience is one of many field trips the preschoolers have done this year. The students also have been to the Jungle Junction in Bellevue, Back to the Wild, the splash pad in Galion and the Little Buckeye Children’s Museum in Mansfield.

When Lilly Yacob goes to the Willard library, her favorite thing to do is play with the kitchen set in the children’s department. The 5-year-old daughter of Phil and Marianna Worcester said the best field trip has been “playing at Jungle Junction.”

Her favorite activity Monday was craft time.

“I like playing with the tablet. Playing games and stuff,” said Hyram Weltin, 5, who enjoys reading books about astronauts. 

In the children’s department, the son of John and Taylor said he likes “the boxes with toys in them.”

During her internship, Vogel has learned how preschoolers behave in class. She was at the school two days a week in the fall. The 2016 South Central senior class president and valedictorian has been there daily since the end of January.

“You very quickly learn what they love and what they’re not crazy about. They need to be up and doing at this age,” Vogel said.

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