By Beth Fisher. CREATED Feb 26, 2014
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- A group of local kindergartners is already in high school. They attend Northwest Career and Technical Academy and on any given day, they have high school students for teachers.
You'd be hard pressed to find a kindergarten class where the students get so much one on one attention. Kindergarten teacher Amy Valentiner says, "The students here are amazing at Northwest. They sit and have lunch with my kindergarten students."
Northwest is a magnet high school, where students specialize in specific areas of study. Those wanting to go in to early childhood or teacher education have a kindergarten classroom right on campus. They learn to create lesson plans and then put those plans into action in the kindergarten class.
The biggest challenge? Senior Jackson Carter says is making it fun. "They start to get bored and talk and do this kind of thing right here. So, you've got to keep it interesting. Yeah. But also they have to be learning at the same time."
There are a number of benefits of having high school students in a kindergarten classroom. For one thing, students quickly learn whether they want to work with young kids or not. Kaloni Holly says, "I like it because I get to be creative. I get to use different lessons for kindergartners and see if I can make something interesting but still fun."
It's experience that today's teachers didn't get until college. Now, these high school students and their kindergarten pupils are way ahead of the game. "We all help each other learn and grow so I just think we all learn so much from each other."
Northwest offers 9 programs students can specialize in, including early and teacher education.