There are many opportunities for parental involvement at the elementary school.
Parents of kindergarten students often volunteer to help in the classroom during center time working with small groups of children on tasks including cooking and art projects. In first and second grade, there are opportunities for parents to come and read to children, listen to students read to them, or participate in educational game days. Teachers may also ask parents to share special knowledge and skills with the children as they cover different topics. In third and fourth grade parents have the opportunity to be a “Mystery Reader,” lead “First Friday Art” or provide a story and snack for “Book and a Bite.”
Across the grades, as students complete a unit of study parents are often invited to a classroom performance or sharing time that allows the students to showcase their learning. In second grade parents are invited to “Author’s Tea” to hear a few of the stories their children have written throughout the year. In fourth grade, parents are invited to “Time Machine Day” after students read biographies and create a living museum of the memorable people they have learned about. Students look forward to these occasions and are always eager to show their parents what they have learned.
Beginning in second grade, students at The Raleigh School attend an overnight field trip each year. These trips relate to units of study at each grade level and offer students the chance to extend their classroom learning. Parents attend these field trips along with their children and often participate in the activities planned for each trip. For example, in second grade the students visit The Trinity Center in Pine Knoll Shores and participate in the “Sound to Sea” program while they investigate the ocean. Parents who attend this field trip get the opportunity to observe their children while they dissect a squid, wade through the sound collecting sea life, and reenact the Underground Railroad.
In fifth grade students travel to Washington, DC where they serve as tour guides and docents as they visit important landmarks. Parents serve as the audience and get to see and hear first-hand all the work the children have done investigating each landmark and determining its importance in our country’s history.