Submitted by the Orcas Community Resource Center.
It’s that time of year again. Orcas Island preschoolers are about to gain entrée into the wonderful world of kindergarten. Orcas transitioning tots will receive an OCRC canvas bag filled to the brim with books, activities, craft and school supplies, child-sized face masks, toys, and dental hygiene products. In addition to these goodies, each child will receive a $50 gift certificate to Darvill’s Bookstore.
Made possible by a generous annual gift from a fellow Orcas Islander, OCRC partners with local preschools, elementary schools, the Orcas Island Public Library, and Early Childhood Education & Assistance Program (ECEAP) to offer an event to ease the transition from preschool to kindergarten and facilitate kindergarten readiness. This is the 13th year OCRC has offered the Kindergarten Transition Program to Orcas families.
“2020 is shaping up to be a very unusual year. We missed bringing all of the teachers and families together for our annual dinner, bus ride and school tour. Kindergarten will look very different for all of our kiddos this fall. We look forward to the day when the class of 2033 can be together again,” shared Erin O’Dell, Executive Director of the OCRC. “I hope that these special kits are helpful for your families. A lot of love went into creating them.”
Rachel Wilson shared her daughter’s enthusiasm upon opening her treasure trove. “Thank you so much for organizing all those awesome bags! It completely made our daughter’s week knowing others were thinking of her enough to put together an entire bag of goodies to get her ready for Kinder! She hasn’t separated from all her practice supplies to prepare for her first year at school! It brought her so much excitement and joy!”
All of our Orcas children transitioning from preschool to kindergarten, including homeschoolers, qualify for this program. Children attending Orcas Island Montessori, Orcas Island Children’s House, or Kaleidoscope may obtain their bag at their school. Families not enrolled in a preschool may contact OCRC directly to obtain a Kindergarten Transition bag for their child.
Orcas Community Resource Center provides social services to Orcas Islanders in need. The annual Kindergarten Transition event is just one of many programs offered via OCRC. For more information on this and other services, visit, email or call the Resource Center at 360-376-3184. Or contact Erin O’Dell, Executive Director or Zanetha Amani Matisse, Outreach and Communication Specialist.
What’s inside a 2020 Kindergarten Transition bag?
• Personalized $50 Gift Certificate to Darvill’s Bookstore
• Orcas Community Resource Center Zippered Canvas Bag
• Labeled Plastic Supply Bin with latching lid
• Priddy Learning Wipe-Clean ‘Starting School Workbook’ and colorful Dry-Erase Markers
• ‘Planet Kindergarten’ courtesy of Friends of the Orcas Island Library, Summer Reading booklet, and an Orcas Island Public Library card application
• ‘This Is How We Do It: One Day in the Lives of Seven Kids from around the World’ book
• A-Z Flash Cards
• #2 Pencils and Pencil Sharpener
• Ruler and Geometric Stencil
• Magnetic Dry-Erase Board, Large Magnets, and Dry-Erase Marker
• Scissors and Cutting Practice Sheet
• Jumbo Glue Stick
• Watercolor Palette with Paintbrush
• Molding Clay
• Color Pencils
• Art Coloring Activity Pack by Brook Meinhardt
• Energy Activity Booklets and Stickers courtesy of OPALCO
• Wipe-Clean Nature Scavenger Hunt
• Magnifying Glass
• Jump Rope
• Flying Disc
• Bean Bags
• Colorful C-Chain Links
• Toothbrush, Toothpaste and Brushing Timer
• Child’s-size Face Mask and COVID-19 mask information sheet