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Kids College a summer place to be for young students

Eighth-grade students who participated in a session of "Pinterest Live" Wednesday during Kids College post with glass bottle creations made during the class. (RYAN McGAUGHEY/DAILY GLOBE)

WORTHINGTON -- Youths in Roxanne Hayenga's "Pinterest Live" class Wednesday afternoon were enjoying the creative process of making art.

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"We took a glass bottle that was kind of tall, and we were supposed to glue newspaper clippings on it," explained Max Langerud, an incoming Worthington eighth-grader. "Then we took things we kind of like and glued them on the outside. After that, we put a lot of glue on the outside so everything will stay down."

"The whole idea is to cut things out that pertain to your personality," Hayenga added.

Langerud is one of the many students participating this week in Kids College, the annual four-day slate of classes offered for incoming fifth- through eighth-graders on the Worthington campus of Minnesota West Community and Technical College. Students begin each day at 9:15 a.m. and attend four different classes throughout the day, with the courses varying depending on the grade level.

Eighth-graders attending the 12:25 p.m. session of "Pinterest Live" had already gone to "Yard Games" and "Mass Media" classes earlier the day, and later went to "Game Theory." Each grade level had its own revolving schedule of classes for Kids College, which kicked off Monday and wraps up today.

Langerud is no stranger to Kids College, as he is participating in the program for the third year.

"I really like everything about it," he said. "It's not just set classes --EMDASH-- it's really a lot of variety and randomness."

On Tuesday, eighth-graders in "Pinterest Live" had a project that involved an entirely different set of supplies than the work they undertook Wednesday.

"We took shaving cream and spread it out ... and then took two or more different colors of food coloring and put it in the shaving cream," detailed O.D. Othow of Worthington. "Then we took a gigantic, toothpick-like thing (a skewer) and moved it and swirled it around. Then we took a cloth that we had and put it in the shaving cream. .. Then, we could frame that or sell it."

Jennifer Pacas of Worthington said she has a Pinterest account on which she pins some of her artistic creations, and was enjoying Hayenga's class the most out of the various Kids College offerings.

"Kids College is better than just being at home," she said. "A lot of the stuff here is fun."

Kendrick Bickett of Worthington agreed.

"If you've been sitting around your house all summer like I have, it's good to get out," he said. "It's more fun being with friends here than watching TV."

Hayenga, who serves as community development/customized training coordinator at Minnesota West, was also enjoying herself. She was teaching "Pinterest Live" for the first time this year after helping lead an effort during the 2012 Kids College that resulted in hats that were used for "The Music Man" theatrical production.

"Sometimes I don't think there's much hands-on stuff anymore," Hayenga said. "It's fun to watch these students just do their own thing.

"The idea of exposing students to changing classes and different subject matter --EMDASH-- that's how this is made fun," she added. "A hands-on art class like this, the kids understand what this about, but there's some other subject matter that may be new and interesting to them."

Each Kids College class typically has two mentors, Hayenga noted, who are usually graduates of the program. Worthington High School students Katherine Luke and Emily Williamson were each assisting as mentors for the third time.

"We had fun with it when we were kids and would like the program to continue," Luke said.

"It's fun to see the kids look up to high-schoolers," Williamson said. "When I was in Kids College, I looked up to the mentors a lot, and it was nice when they took time to talk to me, have lunch with me or show an interest in what I had going on."

Partial tuition costs --EMDASH-- as well as transportation --EMDASH-- for Kids College are provided by the Nobles County Integration Collaborative service area including Adrian, Ellsworth,

Fulda, Round Lake/Brewster and Worthington.

Ryan McGaughey

I first joined the Daily Globe in April 2001 as sports editor. I later became the news editor in November 2002, and the managing editor in August 2006. I'm originally from New York State, and am married with two children.

(507) 376-7320