Creating an engaging environment for kids


Diamond Hollins/The Lion’s Roar

Cameron Wood, a sophomore business administration major, helps two kindergartners with their homework. This contributes to the goals of the “Rec Kids After School Program.”

After-school programs offer a convenient, helpful and engaging setting for children.

Recreational Sports and Wellness organizes the “REC Kids After School Program” for kids from 5-13 years old. It aims to craft an educational and fun-filled environment by offering homework help to children, activities that improve overall fitness and various games that contribute to the goal of creating an enjoyable experience.

The program is held every week, Monday through Friday from 2:15-5:45 p.m.

According to Thomas Morris, supervisor of the “REC Kids After School Program,” counselors help the kids with homework after picking them up from the Southeastern Laboratory School. This is followed by leisure time when the kids can play until they are picked up by their parents.

Morris shared how participating in the program helps the kids.

“The kids benefit because they get to be with their friends from school longer, a nice meal, and counselors who are engaged and care about the kids greatly,” explained Morris. “The kids also gain valuable social skills due to being around people who might not be the same age or different in another way but learn to coexist.” 

Working with the kids helped student counselors for the program like Ryan Williams, a junior communication major, with self-identity and knowledge about kids.

“Working with the kids, you learn about yourself and about kids in general,” said Williams. “Each one is different and unique in their own way. You also learn things about yourself as far as caring for others and not just yourself.”

For Williams, the most enjoyable aspect of being a part of this program is seeing the smiles on kids’ faces as they enjoy their time there.

From making connections to learning about having responsibilities, Morris believes the program also aids him.

“It benefits me because I get to still be a part of the Southeastern family,” stated Williams. “I get to work with the same kids who I made connections with as a student. I am learning new things about being a boss and having responsibilities, and who knows what other opportunities this will bring on?”

The “REC Kid After School Program” nurtures leadership in student counselors and allows them to do what they love.

“When I work with the kids, it feels like I’ve gained leadership, and also it allows me to share the compassion in my heart for them,” shared Cameron Wood, a sophomore business administration major. “With my years of experience working with kids, I’ve always enjoyed every second of it.”