Our families benefit greatly from the Great Start workshops provided by Side by Side, Inc.. Parents are excited about ways they can help their children in reading and math. Many of our families are bilingual and receive interpreter services at the workshops. We have seen parents who attend these workshops more involved in their child's education. Thanks Side by Side!
Side by Side is having a great impact on Laurel area schools!
In the 2013-14 school year, we expanded our primarily kindergarten focused series of parent workshops to include families of Grades 1 and 2 students. We have nearly doubled the number of families participating from last year and early data reviews of student assessments given them in reading show that Great Start kids make greater gains than those students whose families do not attend! For the coming school year, we will be adding a series of workshops for parents of county preschool (age 4) students and two of our schools will be additionally be hosts to our Great Start workshop series taught in Spanish.
As a former teacher and paraprofessional in the schools, it is a joy to see parents and teachers truly work together on behalf of their students. I have watched students who have struggled to read become more confident and successful when their parent redoubles the teacher's efforts by learning how to help more at home. Increased communication between home and school has a powerful effect on student effort, success and achievement. "I can't" becomes "I'll try", and "I'll try" becomes "I am" and "I can do this...and more"! It's a win-win for everyone. Stronger families DO build stronger schools-come join us!
As a former public school teacher and active volunteer with the faith based non profit, Side by Side, in Laurel, MD schools, I am thrilled to see parents and their children eagerly come to Great Start or Family Academy programs and go home from an evening with ways to work with their children at home, with newfound behavior management strategies, and with a growing respect for the efforts made upon their children's behalf. Class sizes are growing and there are multiple demands upon a teacher's ability to truly connect with a child's family, but at Side by Side, we seize upon opportunities to truly equip parents to be their child's first and best teacher. Children delight in free pizza for dinner and chances to participate in arts, science and literature based enriching and fun activities. Parents enjoy a "no cooking night", the opportunity to connect and share with other parents and and workshops led by school and community leaders. Teachers report greater participation in and support of school based instruction. When children, teachers, school administrators, and faith based community members work together, academic success is surely enhanced!
At the yearly breakfast and silent auction I am so amazed at the stories told by parents and how Side by Side made such a difference in the lives of these families. I wish that all schools had this program . I love volunteering for this organization and interacting with the families and helping to raise funds and wish I could do more. I truely admire the familes that are new to this nation and give there all to help their children to suceed. I'm proud to be a small part of Side x Side..
Side by Side is a local, faith-based organization in Laurel, MD working with the parents of students in our community's public elementary schools. It's mission focuses on providing resources for parents to better control their children's behavior and to help their young children with reading and arithmetic skills at home. A number of recent studies have found parental involvement and partnering with schools to be a key factor in the success of young children. With a large group of volunteers Side by Side has started the first Family Academy in our area and has just completed a series of workshops called Great Start specifically targeted to parents of kindergarten and pre-kindergarten students. The Great Start seminars were all taught by teachers in the schools and both the parents and the teachers had positive comments about the opportunity to interact with one another. Our programs are done with a meal for all attendees, workshops on a variety of topics for the parents, and special enrichment activities for the children. We have not charged a fee for any of our programs. We rely for the majority of our funding on individual contributions and support from area churches. Check out our website at sidebysidelaurel.org for more information.
Side by Side is an organization which brings together the community through programs which encourage parental involvement in their child's education. Both the Family Academy and Great Start programs help parents to help their children succeed in school. This in turn benefits the teachers and the staff of the schools the children attend. This effort is supported by the many volunteers from Laurel's faith based organizations and is truly making a difference in the lives of the children and parents in the Laurel schools.
We haven't found other organizations that do what we do. Many nonprofits offer parenting workshops and courses, but they don't tie these to the parents helping their children do well in school. Schools give occasional parent workshops, but they are generally one-off and don't build the parents' skills. Our Great Start program -- six consecutive workshops at each participating school in which kindergarten and pre-kindergarten parents learn about behavior, reading and math strategies and activities -- goes sufficiently in-depth to really make a difference. And the family meals beforehand, children's activities and Spanish translators build the parents' comfort and sense of belonging with the school
Side by side is an organization that has helped me in various ways in helping me get useful hands on information I need to raise my children in godly way and also academically, morally and socially. I have truly learned a lot from the many programs they have organized.
My son is doing better in school.this whole experiecne help me and my son the 123 method works and we have it down pack
When we moved to the Laurel area we were looking for an organization that served children to devote our time and energy to. We found out about Side by Side from their excellent and informative website. I reached out to the Joe Murchison, the Executive Director, and my church group was immediately directed to an event that we could participate in. I am impressed by their approach of ministering not just to children, but to their families as well. Side by Side equips parents so they can have a positive impact on their child’s education, encourages children to do well in school through building their confidence through tutoring and mentoring, and supports teachers by building positive relations between teachers and the families they serve. I am excited about serving with Side by Side in the future and would recommend Side by Side to anyone interested in serving children.
Side by Side is transforming Laurel area elementary schools by helping parents (and thus their children) with discipline and a love for reading and math. Through Side by Side's Great Start and Family Academy programs, parents are becoming engaged with teachers and principals. They are learning to have high expectations for their children and their schools. With a significant and growing number of families joining in the program, Side By Side is bringing lasting change to Laurel Area Schools. I am honored to play a part. One of the things that is so important to me is that the volunteers for Side By Side's programs come from neighborhood churches near the schools who provide love and a sense of community to the families who participate. These relationships will grow as the years unfold.
My son is 5 years old and just entered Kindgarten. Side by SIde offered a 6-8 week parenting to course at his schools. I am a social worker and have actually ran parenting programs so I was curious to see if I would really benefit from the sessions beyond a refresher. I was so pleaseed with the prgoram Side by Side brought to the school. They offered a family dinner each week which allowed a very busy mother to actually eat with her childrens at least once a week when we went to the program. In addition the program offered enrichment activites for my son while I went to the parenting class. The class was so interesting and taught me soo much. It focused on discipline, reading, and math. It explained step by step what our children were learning, how the teachers teach them, and what we as parents can do at home. It gave really good strategies and ideas on how to make learning exciting. We went to every session and the thought of us not going was never an issue. I loved seeing my other parent friends each week and felt a strong sense of partnership with the school, side by side, my sons teacher and the other parents. The volunteers were very nice also, they even allowed my 17 month old daughter to go into the enrichment actitivies sometimes so I could focus on class and she could bond with the other children. I really apprectiate this program and feel it gave me a great foundation. I hope they have something similar for each year of school. Thank you Side by Side