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The Journey School invites public to open house on Aug. 5

Maggie Foster, left, and Ashton Lewis, right, scoop sand while playing outside at The Journey School. Children at The Journey School complete tasks catered to their mental and physical developmental needs. Visit the school on Aug. 5 from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. for tours and registration information. --Laura Fenton photo

SELMA — The children at the Journey School play with a purpose.

“I like The Journey School,” said 5-year-old Mya Rollins, recent graduate of the program. “We do art and I learned how to read.”

The Journey School, opened in 2008, enhances the learning processes of children ages 2.5 years old through 5 years old through individualized weekly lessons to improve motor and social skills such as hand-eye coordination and sharing with friends.

“It is a completely structured educational program,” said Renee Alsobrook, director. “We have a strict routine on a daily basis and that’s important for the children to know we do the same things every day. We use curriculums to get our activities and plans. It’s definitely an educational preschool.”

Children receive evaluations twice per year from a Battelle Developmental Inventory test, a screening for children up to 7 years old. The test evaluates the level of skill of the cognitive, motor, communication, social and self-help skills development.

Parents and teachers discuss the findings and work together to create goals for the child.

“That’s when we create our individualized work task activities so we can get them to that milestone and then we move forward,” Alsobrook said.

Most children complete work tasks, or activities, for fine motor skills to help a child’s dexterity to turn the page of a book, write legibly, hop on one foot or use a knife and fork.

“I think that those seem so easy to all of us, but those are skills they’ve got to really learn,” said Elizabeth Culpepper, former teacher and volunteer. “A lot of kids come in here and don’t know colors and numbers. They all know all of that by the end.”

The school creates activities for the individual, benefiting those traditionally developed and special needs children. Staff members are certified in child development, child safety and positive discipline to accommodate any child’s need.

Interested families or donors are invited to attend an open house on Aug. 5 from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m.

“I think it’s important for [contributors] to be able to come in and see the great things we have done with their donations,” said Penny Foster, former director and founder of the school.

Enrollment is open. Classes operate Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until noon from September until July. For more information, visit The Journey School, 1302 Old Orrville Rd, or call 872-1222 or 267-2811.