Some offerings are individual lessons (e.g. piano); some are group classes targeted for a particular age range of students. We also offer clubs for Elementary students, including Odyssey of the Mind, Chess, and Philosophy and Ethics. Offerings vary from semester to semester, although there are some constants (piano). Sign-up is on a semester by semester basis.
Each class has a separate Enrichment Fee which is in addition to MCHD tuition and After School fees. Special package rates for drop-in care are available for enrichment students not enrolled in the After School program, so that a child can attend After School between the end of the school day and the time the enrichment class begins.
Current enrichment offerings for Early Childhood and Kindergarten children include:
Art with Pamela
In these 3-week sessions designed especially for young learners, Pamela Alberda of Little Wheel Studio guides students through a playful exploration of visual art and gives the children freedom to express themselves using a wide variety of mediums. Each week Pamela brings in pieces of fine art and illustrations for the students to look at, touch and talk about. Each class will be an introduction to different media and art forms. Media/art forms to be explored include: collage, painting, drawing, sculpture, and paper weaving. Children are active learners, and making art is a hands-on activity that expands imaginations and exercises creativity, develops small motor control and eye-hand coordination, and sharpens children’s powers of observation. Through these introductory sessions, children can learn fundamentals of art— color, line, shape, form and texture — by painting and drawing, making collages, fashioning three-dimensional objects out of clay, and talking about their work. By creating art and looking at it, children become aware and gain an understanding of composition, balance, and symmetry. Each weekly class will result in a finished piece of artwork. Children may register for any or all sessions; lessons are new each session and each semester term. Pamela Alberda holds an MA in Elementary Education and a BA in Theatre, and has been a puppeteer, storyteller and drama teacher to all ages for the past 20+ years.
Violin with Candida
MCHD welcomes Candida Yoshikai, an experienced Suzuki Method and traditional violin instructor. Meeting twice a week, children will enjoy learning about the instruments of the orchestra, how their own voice is the beginning of their music making, the rudiments of musical notation, and preliminary skills for playing the violin.
Soccer Shots is built around a highly-developed curriculum with the goal of teaching basic soccer skills rather than scrimmaging in its weekly 35-45 minute sessions. Using developmentally appropriate fitness activities and exercises that can enhance coordination, balance, and agility development, as well as creative and imaginative play, Soccer Shots’ whole-child approach emphasizes respect, patience, encouragement, and team work and includes exclusive Soccer Shots games and Word of the Day. Soccer Shots coach and franchise owner Trey Alexander has always loved soccer. After high school, Trey played for Western Kentucky University. Trey helped his teams to two USL-2 regular season championships and individually earned team MVP and all-league honors. Trey is also a Registered Nurse with additional degrees in psychology and history.
The Goshi Shun Martial Arts & Fitness Enrichment Programs provide age-appropriate martial arts throughout the RTP area. Karate Fun is designed to teach Preschoolers and Kindergarten students martial arts through song, games and interpretive dance (forms). Students learn basic martial arts terminology and counting in Japanese. The Karate Fun and Karate After School classes are taught by Sensei Brenda Mayfield, a martial arts student/instructor since 1995 and founder of the The Goshi Shun School of Martial Arts & Fitness. Recently Sensei Mayfield has been promoted to the title of Yodan (Japanese)/Master (Korean) 4th Dan.
Current enrichment offerings for Kindergarten and Elementary children include:
In this program designed for Kindergarten through 2nd graders, participants learn the science of building structures and take baby steps toward working like a civil engineer to design structures using simple materials. This course is brought to MCHD by STEMforkids, a Raleigh based organization with the mission to reach young people through structured programming, promoting an interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines, and enhancing youth development.
In this introductory program designed for 3rd-6th graders, children get a taste of Computer Science using STEMforkids’ innovative approach of bringing complex engineering concepts to kids in a fun way. We will break open computers, explore motherboards, learn how computers function and what makes up the World Wide Web of computing devices. Participants engage in various hands-on activities including I-Computer, Peek Inside and children’s favorite, Avatar 001.
Philosophy Club (Mondays)
This after school club for Lower Elementary students, a joint venture with the UNC Philosophy Department Outreach program, returns to MCHD Enrichment programming for a second year. Young children are natural philosophers, and this program encourages students to embrace their inner philosopher by thinking about big ideas and big questions. Led by UNC faculty members and graduate students, these sessions will use children’s literature and other activities to generate a guided conversation about important values, such as respect, fairness, and gratitude. Students will also discuss big and interesting questions that have perplexed children and philosophers for centuries, such as: What makes us who we are? and How can we know that we are not in a dream, right now? and even What is nothing? Along the way, students will develop important critical thinking skills, practice giving reasons in support of their ideas, learn to evaluate those reasons, and learn to think in more logical ways, all while developing confidence in their thinking and speaking skills.
Soccer Shots is built around a highly-developed curriculum with the goal of teaching basic soccer skills rather than scrimmaging in its weekly 35-45 minute sessions. Using developmentally appropriate fitness activities and exercises that can enhance coordination, balance, and agility development, as well as creative and imaginative play, Soccer Shots’ whole-child approach emphasizes respect, patience, encouragement, and team work and includes exclusive Soccer Shots games and Word of the Day. Soccer Shots coach and franchise owner Trey Alexander has always loved soccer. After high school, Trey played for Western Kentucky University. Trey helped his teams to two USL-2 regular season championships and individually earned team MVP and all-league honors. Trey is also a Registered Nurse with additional degrees in psychology and history
After-School Art with Janine
For students in 3rd through 6th grade, this class will be an intense course with sophisticated projects and processes, with a goal of giving the artists an opportunity to practice skills and learn techniques that go beyond what is covered in weekly art classes. The focus of the fall semester will be geared toward honing drawing and rendering skills. Areas of study will include 3-D shadowing and highlighting, perspective, figure drawing, watercolor and acrylic painting and, hopefully, include time for some sculpture and book making. Second semester will emphasize painting in watercolor, tempera and acrylic. This class is intended for students who have a passion for art- they must be motivated and hard working. This is a fun and exciting class and can take these young artists to the next level of personal expression.” Janine Wolf has been teaching art to children and adults since 1975 and, this year, begins her 20th year as our MCHD Elementary Art Teacher.
Ukulele with Paul
Designed for students ages 6-12, this class will teach ukulele fundamentals, including how to hold and strum, tune, and play simple chords and melodies. Students will then learn how to read tablature notations and begin to play songs on their own and together. We will explore some music theory to gain a better understanding of how music works. All the child needs is a ukulele! Paul Hammond has been playing stringed instruments for ten years, enjoys various styles of music, and also plays the mandolin, guitar, and banjo. Instrument rentals are the responsibility of the parent(s). Ukuleles should be soprano, concert, or tenor size. Please contact Paul for instrument recommendations.
Piano with Sam
We are delighted to have Sam Marion return for an eleventh year of teaching piano to MCHD students ages 5 – 12. Please note that this class fills almost immediately and requests for placement on Sam’s wait list are accepted throughout the year. Current MCHD piano students have priority registration for second semester. We can also refer you to Sam so that he may be able to accommodate you on another day at his home. Sam has been teaching piano students of all ages for over 40 years, and is a member of the Durham Music Teacher’s Association. With a Master’s degree in music from UNC-Greensboro, Sam brings a primarily classical approach to piano while teaching a variety of genres. Sam often involves all of his students in a piano party at his house during the year, providing a social venue for all piano levels.
MCHD Drama Club
Pamela Alberda of Little Wheel Studio returns to lead the MCHD Drama Club, which gives students ages 6-12 an opportunity to participate in creative dramatic activities leading up to a final production of a play that they will cooperatively write and build. Students will be involved with different aspects of theater including script writing, impromptu skits, vocal music, costume design, set design, props and tech crew. Club activities will encourage creative thinking skills and teamwork, as well as provide students with enriched learning experiences in the area of performing arts. Pamela Alberda holds an MA in Elementary Education and a BA in Theatre, and has been a puppeteer, storyteller and drama teacher to all ages for the past 20+ years.
Odyssey of the Mind Club
Odyssey of the Mind (OotM) is a creative problem-solving program with a twenty-five year track record of success for all ages. At MCHD, elementary students participate. Students around the world select problems ranging from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics, work in teams under the guidance of coaches to create a solution within set cost guidelines, and present their solution for that problem. This club is led by a combination of volunteers from the MCHD staff and dedicated MCHD parent and grandparents. In the spring, the MCHD OofM team(s) have the opportunity to attend and possibly compete in the regional competition.