Cedar Cliff Partnership Enriches Elementary Students

by Victoria Stearns, Public Relations Writer

Cedarville University’s School of Education and Cedarville Elementary School are partnering to create enrichment experiences for students in grades K-5. 

Pre-service teachers, along with other Cedarville University faculty and staff, are providing hands-on enrichment sessions in the areas of science, math, language arts, theater and fine arts. Pre-service teachers are education majors involved in a school-based field experience under the supervision of a cooperating teacher. 

The enrichment sessions began on Saturday, Nov. 7, and will take place once a month through March at Cedarville Elementary, which is located directly across the street from Cedarville University. 


“This partnership excites me because it develops a well-rounded academic experience at a young age,” said Ruth Sylvester, Ph.D., associate professor of education and program coordinator. “Rather than a typical classroom setting, the program allows the child to study past the basic school subjects and pursue further intelligences, such as music, arts and engineering, in creative and fun ways.”

For November’s session, children in grades K-2 built catapults to learn about the physics behind simple machines. Students in grades 3-5 created harmless explosions using household chemicals to visually study the science behind blasts and bursts. 

After observing the first session, Cedar Cliff Local School’s Superintendent Chad Mason said, “It was wonderful to see our students engaged in active, hands-on and project-based learning activities.” “Our students benefit a great deal from partnerships like this,” he continued. “It provides our students the unique opportunity to participate in a program usually only offered in larger districts.” 


Future session activities will vary by week, but are expected to include topics such as magnetic slimes, recycled contraptions, Lego robotics and a mini theater camp. 

Nearly 30 university students and 10 faculty and staff members are involved with each Saturday session.

“I am delighted with our students’ ability to have the skill and experience needed to host, teach and provide a hands-on learning environment for the children,” said Sylvester. 

The upcoming December 5 session will feature a draw-along session where students will draw alongside an artist. They’ll also learn about birds, such as the barred owl and wild turkey, from a guest biologist. 

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,711 undergraduate, graduate and online students in more than 100 areas of study. Founded in 18 87, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings and leading student satisfaction ratings.