CAMP VERDE – A graduate of the University of California at Irvine with a Bachelor of Arts degree in criminology, Peggy Dickey is a certified substitute, not a certified teacher.
“I’m a coach, like a baseball coach,” says Dickey, the 5th Day programs coordinator at Camp Verde Unified School District “And now I am coaching the coaches.”
Dickey calls it problem-based learning, this hands-on process of applying educational programs to solve real-life problems. Though she tends to lean toward STEM program – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math – she’s finding that sports, art and even karaoke are possibilities for the district’s Friday Camps.
The goal of the Friday Camps is to provide children with “fun learning opportunities.”
“I’m really at their service. I want to know what they want, then make it happen,” Dickey says. “That’s how robotics got started and grew into a successful program.”
Camp Verde Bugle: Were you approached about the position of 5th Day coordinator? Or did you approach the school to apply?
Peggy Dickey: I approached the school several years back when the position was originally available.
More recently, I was approached and then applied for the position.
Bugle: How will you adjust from running the robotics program to overseeing all programs?
Dickey: As the robotics program has grown over the past three years, so has its base of coaches.
These enthusiastic and capable people will take over for me and continue to run the program.
Bugle: Who will be the new head coach, so to speak, for the robotics program?
Dickey: Sheri Gardner will be lead coach for the competitive team. She was my assistant coach last year and did a great job.
Sheri really enjoys working with the students and is very competent and enthusiastic about robotics. She also works at the elementary school in the special education department.
Bugle: Is there anything else you would like to say about the Friday Camps at Camp Verde Unified School District?
Dickey: These programs are now free to students at CVUSD.
Also, these programs are not only opportunities for students to learn about interesting subjects that they don’t have time for on Mondays through Thursdays, Friday Camps are an opportunity for teachers to share some of their passions with the students that they just can’t get to during the regular school week.
We are looking for community members who may like to share a passion they have with the students in a Friday program.
For any questions or comments, people can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow Bill Helm on Twitter @BillHelm42