Dina Dinosaur teaches classroom skills in Fayette 01.26.2011

Written by David Green.

dino.1When Dina Dinosaur is awakened from her traveling case, students start paying attention to details. They learn to listen and to wait—good skills to have in the classroom.

Dina, a puppet, is operated by Mandy Wyman, a school counsel employed by the Four-County Family Center based in Toledo.

Fayette Elementary School has joined four others in the area to receive a weekly visit from Wyman to implement the  Incredible Years prevention program.

The Dinosaur Child Training Program uses puppets to teacher kindergarten and first grade students skills to strengthen their social, emotional and academic competencies.

Through the free 10-week program, Wyman will help students understand and detect various emotional states; control anger; learn problem-solving techniques when angry; see ways to be helpful and friendly at school and at home; learn about sharing; and develop positive play skills.

dino.3Dina Dinosaur’s role is to help children do their best in school. Other puppets address different skills. Wyman also shows videos and alternates group circle discussion with work at the children’s desks.

Material is provided to teachers so they can reinforce what Wyman presents during the remainder of the week. In addition, homework is assigned that gives parents a view of the program.

Wyman’s goal is to boost self-esteem and self-confidence and reduce negative conflicts among students. This, in turn, should lead to more academic success.

“This is a wonderful prevention program,” said Kathy Short, director of the Four County Family Center. “Teaching social and emotional skills to our young children is important to their successful growth and development.”

Wyman reports receiving a positive response from school districts she’s served.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016