MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

June 12, 2013

Smart School teaches character

About 200 children are enrolled in summer education program

By Cathy Spaulding

— Smart School educators seek to teach their kids more than reading and math.

They want to instill confidence and good character.

 About 200 kids are enrolled in Smart School, a summer education program sponsored by First Assembly of God.

The program, which runs mornings through Aug. 2, seeks to show kids they can accomplish things, said Steve Rose, First Assembly pastor.

He said children often “are not affirmed or believed in.”

“Here, children are told they can do it,” Rose said. “In the fall, children are walking into school believing they can do it.”

Smart School students rotate to four classes each morning — reading, math, dance and character education. Rose said all the reading and math teachers are accredited. Several are current or former public school teachers.

Rose said the teachers are volunteering their time for Smart School.

Ashley Rose, who teaches dance said she looks forward to her classes. On Tuesday, she led her kids in jumping, shuffling moves to Katy Perry’s “Firework.”

“This is my favorite part,” Ashley Rose said. “This is the thing that gets me up in the morning are the kids. They’re respectful, kind, always sweet.”

Dance class is what gets student Jayden Davis going.

“I like it because we get to come on stage and dance,” Jayden said.

The dance class also is helping kids get ready for Celebrate Freedom, an annual patriotic observance at First Assembly.

“Children will be part of the presentation,” Steve Rose said. “They’ll get up and do patriotic songs.”

The program also has special events, such as a visit Tuesday by a Gore petting zoo.

Chloe Bush, 8, of Oktaha said she likes the character classes because “they teach you stuff you can use.”

Smart School will continue to accept kids from first through fifth grades, Steve Rose said. There is a $10 fee to cover enrollment and a Smart School T-shirt.

Reach Cathy Spaulding at (918) 684-2928 or cspaulding@muskogeephoenix.com.

If you go



WHAT: Smart School: An Accelerated educational experience.

WHEN: 8 a.m. to noon weekdays through Aug. 2.

WHERE: First Assembly of God, 3100 Gulick St.

WHO: Students entering first through fifth grades.

REGISTER: $10 registration fee. Call (918) 682-9000.