From PPE Donations to Free Online Lessons for Homeschool Students, Local Businesses Help First Responders and Families During COVID-19 Pandemic
We love our educational partners! They are a wonderful group of committed businesses and individuals who are experts in their fields, but more importantly, they truly care about educating our children and helping the communities they serve. We want to thank each and every one of them. We are proud to partner with you!
Recently, we reached out to our awesome educational partners and asked them to share with us the things they are doing to help during these uncertain times. Many had to temporarily close their places of business due to the shelter-in-place order mandated to help stop the spread of the coronavirus — but this did not stop them. Some put their talents to work making masks and personal protective equipment (PPE) for our first responders. Others created free online fun and educational activities to help families — whether they are current clients or homeschooling for the first time.
Donations Teach Homeschool Students Practical Applications for Skills They Learn in Class
By donating the products of their trade, our educational partners lead by example, showing children how to be good citizens and help in times of need. They also provide their students with practical applications for the skills they learn in class. This helps bolster what the students learn, as well as reinforce why these skills are needed in the real world.
Here are some of the wonderful things these local businesses are doing to help others:
After temporarily closing their Rocklin HackerLab to help stop the spread of the coronavirus, the owners of Makers XD learned about a grassroots effort to provide 3D-printed face shields for medical workers. Dubbed #OperationShieldsUp, the group of volunteers is committed to making sure all of our front-line care providers and support teams have the Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) they need to effectively help others during the crisis. The efforts are 100% donation based and depend on volunteers to make the shields. Makers XD asks anyone with 3D printing chops to get in touch with them. HackerLab’s blog contains more information about the project and how you can help.
When they aren’t single-handedly trying to protect our first responders, Makers XD/HackerLab is an all-in-one makerspace, coworking facility and workforce incubator. They bring people, training, and advanced prototyping equipment together under one roof, giving you the opportunity to bring your vision to life. They offer many exciting classes in their Rocklin, Sacramento and Rancho Cordova locations. Learn more at www.makersxd.com.
Bon Voyages World Language Academy
Using their many years of experience teaching languages online, Bon Voyages World Language Academy is training public school teachers who are scrambling to learn how to teach their students virtually by holding free, online webinars and offering free activities for teachers. “We are trying to do our best to continue to support the teachers who are learning this new way of teaching,” their owners said.
Bon Voyage World Languages Academy offers live, online courses for students in grades K-12 in a dozen languages using their unique method “Language with the 5 Senses.” Visit www.bvwla.com and start learning a new language today!
EDH Sewing and Fashion Academy
RoseMarie Kelliher and her El Dorado Hills Sewing and Fashion Academy students started making fabric face mask for family, neighbors and their local hospital, as well as gowns and hats made with recycled sheets for area hospitals as soon as they realized the great need in their community.
When she’s not helping her community, RoseMarie teaches students the art of sewing and fashion design. She holds a degree in Fashion Design from the Limerick College of Art and Design in Ireland and City and Guilds of London Institute. Find out more about her classes for children and adults, as well as classes specifically for homeschoolers, summer camps, and birthday and Girl Scout parties on her website at www.kidspassionforfashion.com.
Two Square Books
As a pick-me-up for friends and family, Two Square Books’ owners posted a wonderful YouTube video that provides a virtual hug to anyone in need during these trying times. Additionally, they are assisting a group of square dancers making cloth masks. So far, the group has delivered approximately 75 masks to Marshal Hospital in Placerville. Several of the sewers are also making masks for family members in high exposure jobs, for high risk neighbors, for Chimp Haven (a home for chimpanzees retired from medical research facilities) and for others in need.
Located in Shingle Springs, Two Square Books provides writing, math, penmanship, reading, and vocabulary tutoring. For more information, visit twosquarebooks.com.
Miss Cindy, AKA Cynthia Vaccaro, owner of The Cottage, has been hard at work sewing and delivering medical masks to healthcare facilities in our community. She also provides some helpful resources for parents on her blog.
When there isn’t a pandemic, Miss Cindy provides quality homeschool enrichment classes for students 4.5- to 13-years-old with a focus on cross-curricular, project-based, hands-on learning; character education and social skills development; building community and lasting friendships; and fostering a life-long love of learning. Find classes and registration information at www.thecottagehomeschool.com.
Creative Arts and Music Center
The team at Creative Arts and Music Center asked their community to nominate families whose parents are healthcare workers on the front lines against COVID-19. Eight families were nominated, and ALL OF THEM were selected to receive unlimited online art classes for their children absolutely free during the month of May! This is the Center’s way of providing “artistic relief” to families who are burdened with the task of flattening the curve on the pandemic.
Since 1994, the Creative Arts and Music Center has helped children — and the young at heart, too — explore their world, find their voice, and channel their creativity through art & music. They are currently offering online courses at a greatly reduced rate to give all families some artistic relief. Learn more at www.camcenter.org.
Share Ideas with Children and Help if You Can
We encourage you to share with your children what these and other businesses and individuals are doing to help the communities in which we live. If you and/or your family are in a position to volunteer to help any with any of these endeavors, please reach out to the companies and offer your assistance.
Free Lessons Help Homeschool Families Learn New Skills and Try New Vendors
To help all families teaching their children at home and to keep in touch with their current students during the coronavirus pandemic, several of Horizon Charter Schools’ educational partners posted free online lessons. This is a great way for families to support small businesses in our community as well as try some of the amazing classes offered by Horizon Charter Schools’ educational partners. Most of these are only free for a short time, so be sure to check them out soon.
Being home from school doesn’t mean kids have to stop learning or using their imaginations! Mad Science created an online resource page with free STEM-themed coloring sheets, at-home experiments and interactive quizzes to help families schooling at home. Check out these fun and educational projects families can do together using normal household items at www.madsciencepromo.com/athomeexperiments. Be sure to like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MadScience to learn how to do even more fun experiments.
For over 30 years, Mad Science has delivered unique, hands-on science experiences for children through their after-school programs, homeschool classes, birthday parties, workshops, special events, and summer camps. Their innovative programs are as entertaining as they are educational! Find out more at www.madscience.org.
Granite Bay Jiu Jitsu
During the shelter-in-place order, Granite Bay Jiu Jitsu is offering a large chunk of their martial arts material online 100% free to the community. Visit online.gbjj.org to get started.
Granite Bay Jiu Jitsu focuses on bullyproofing youth, after school programs for low-income and at-risk youth and self-defense and empowerment for girls and women. Their classes are always playful and they strive to make them life-changing.
Writing with Kris
Kris Cordell, owner of Writing with Kris, told us, “We are glad that families are safe at home, but we know that they are likely facing some new challenges, like how to fill so many hours with constructive activities.” To help, during the month of April, the team from Writing with Kris is offering FREE online classes for students schooling at home. These live, online classes use the Zoom platform, are approximately 30 minutes in length and meet 2 or 3 times each week. Although the classes are free, you do need to sign up for the appropriate age group. Visit their website at www.writingwithkris.com to register.
In their normal 12-week literature-based writing courses, Writing with Kris students dive into reading quality literature and writing engaging essays. The end result: improved writing skills, greater enjoyment for literature and stronger critical thinking. In addition, they offer workshops and tutoring services.
Musical Mayhem Productions
During the COVID-19 crisis, Musical Mayhem Productions created free online content for anyone to access! Each week they post two different options for homeschool families to explore:
- One Stop Song Shop — 30-45 minute classes geared towards elementary aged students where they can learn a whole song and then perform it. There is a vocal section, dance section and acting section — then of course the performance!
- Tappy Tuesday — Every Tuesday they post a free tap combination which includes a tap warmup to do before you learn the weekly combo.
Musical Mayhem Productions posts new videos each week, so be sure to check back weekly for the latest fun. These free online learning videos and snippets from past performances may be found on their YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkoNbnhBGYQJ74Xkji4WRyg/videos.
With the goal of “creating awesome adults one musical at a time,” Musical Mayhem Productions offers theater workshops and classes, tap classes, summer camps and several musical productions each year. Find out more at www.mmpkids.com.
All Star Gymnastics
The instructors at All Star Gymnastics know it’s important to keep children active. So, they collaborated with other clubs and technology companies to create a web-based learning and training center for use during the COVID-19 crisis. To access the training, please click on this link https://allstar.webpowerup.com/. You will need to register on this site with the case-sensitive code: Access2020.
At All Star Gymnastics, children learn to exercise their bodies as well as their minds by using agility, grace, strength, and concentration during their training. They offer early childhood programs for ages 18 months to 5 years, gymnastics for ages 5 and older, and basic, intermediate and advanced tumbling. Find out how your child will benefit from gymnastics training by visiting www.allstar-gymnastics.com.
Kovar’s Satori Academy of Martial Arts
During the stay-at-home order, Kovar’s is sharing 16-minute workouts on their Facebook page that are perfect for the whole family. Posted every Wednesday and Saturday, these workouts make a great addition to your day for optimal well-being and health. Start your free workouts at www.facebook.com/kovars.satori.
Through high-quality martial arts instruction, Kovar’s empowers people of all ages to achieve their full potential by emphasizing self-defense, health, fitness and life skills in a friendly, safe and positive environment. Kovar’s offers many types of martial arts and fitness programs that inspire students to become more confident, successful, contributing members of our community. Find an academy near you and learn more about their unique program at www.kovars.com.
Garden Valley Eden Center
To help keep students active and entertained during while sheltering-in-place, Garden Valley Eden Center is producing instructional videos on their Auntie Jo Honey YouTube channel. Even grown-ups can benefit from these offerings! Videos may be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCS_f0vA3Q312nEy6_SgKpyQ.
At Garden Valley Eden Center, students learn creative writing, Spanish, arts and crafts, choir, musical theatre, computer graphics, college prep, and even weight training.
The Curiosity Collective created two weeks of themed activities called, “A Curious Quarantine,” which focuses on getting outside and engaging with your environment. Visit their web page at www.thecuriositycollective.org/a-curious-quarantine and follow along at your own pace!
Offering classes, workshops, and tutoring for children that integrate art, language, math and environmental science on a very broad scale, the Curiosity Collective believes, “the most authentic and enjoyable learning is driven by curiosity.” Learn about their exciting programs and find some great resources at www.thecuriositycollective.org.
Join Play-Well live on Facebook every Tuesday and Thursday at 10am for free STEM fun! Past sessions included: simple machines, aqueduct building challenge, brick gears and even tree houses! Watch live and view past episodes on their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PlayWellTEK.
According to Play-Well, “Play is the beginning of knowledge.” Their programs combine LEGO® and play to explore science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) concepts in a fun and engaging hands-on environment. Play-Well offers summer camps, after-school classes, birthday parties, Girl Scout workshops, in-class field trips, team building events, homeschool lessons and more to cultivate the next generation of engineers, innovators, scientists, inventors and change makers. To find a program near you, visit www.play-well.org.
Wholistic Learning Resources
Keeping families moving can be challenging while staying at home. To help, Wholistic Learning Resources (WLR) Program Director Sandi Russi posted several FREE, full-length yoga classes on her East Sac Yoga Facebook page at www.facebook.com/eastsacyoga. Classes are suitable for beginners as well as those more experienced. They are gentle and give detailed instructions along with important safety precautions. Classes are good for all ages but especially ages 12 and over.
The mission of WLR is to provide a variety of wholistically-inspired specialty classes to supplement homeschooling families within a warm, nurturing environment while creating meaningful relationships and community. They offer instruction in grammar, crafts, ukulele, handiworks, woodworking, movement, science, art, gardening and pre-algebra in Rancho Cordova and Sacramento. Learn more about their wholistic approach to home teaching at www.wlrclasses.com.
Granite Arch Climbing Center
To provide their community with a healthy escape through fun at-home workouts and challenges, Granite Arch Climbing Center is providing workout videos and fun “challenge” videos on their Instagram page at www.instagram.com/granitearchclimbing.
Offering a wide variety of indoor climbing experiences for people of all ages and abilities, Granite Arch Climbing Center provides a unique and exhilarating way to exercise. Whether you’re into bouldering, top roping or lead climbing, you will find plenty of room to go vertical on over 20,000 square feet of wall area. Learn more and take a virtual tour at www.granitearch.com.
Coralie Harless — Rocklin Piano Lessons
To help families use this time at home to learn something fun and new, Coralie Harless is providing 5 free beginner piano lessons! Simply visit www.pianofromhome.com/get-5-free-piano-lessons to get started.
Whether you are looking for online or in-studio piano lessons, Caralie Harless at Rocklin Piano Lessons can help. Her goal is “to provide high-quality instruction, giving students a solid foundation in performance, theory and music history.” Find out how she can have your children reading music and playing piano with 2 hands right away by visiting her website at www.rocklinpianolessons.com.
Bianco’s Violin Studio
Music teacher Sean Bianco is teaching students violin from home using Zoom and Skype. “I love seeing my kids every day trying to maintain some sense of a normal routine for them,” he stated. To help families during this stressful time, he is willing to waive his normal fee for families in need. Contact Mr. Bianco at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to sign up.
If you enjoy opera, check out “At the Opera Hosted by Sean Bianco” every Saturday night on 88.9fm Capital Public Radio from 8 – 12pm or online at https://www.capradio.org/classical/at-the-opera.
During more normal times, Mr. Bianco gives violin, music, and Suzuki music theory lessons at Bianco’s Violin Studio in Meadow Vista.
More Vendors Offer Online Classes for Horizon Charter Schools Students
In addition to the free resources listed above, many of Horizon Charter Schools’ vendors are now offering their classes online. Horizon families are encouraged to check the Vendor Search page of our website to find out if the in-person classes your student was taking before the shelter-in-place order are now being offered online.
Learn More About Horizon’s Educational Partners
Horizon Charter Schools knows a big part of the learning process is exploring new areas of interest and gaining social skills. To facilitate this for our families, we have developed strong relationships with local businesses that offer core, enrichment and elective classes; tutoring; activities; and supplies. These select, local businesses are our “educational partners.”
Each business is approved by Horizon’s Contract Programs Department to ensure your child will be taught by qualified instructors in a safe environment. Courses and curriculum provided by Horizon’s Educational Partners are already approved for student funds, so there are no out-of-pocket expenses. Courses include: martial arts, music, horseback riding, dance, robotics, driver training, visual arts, foreign languages, individual and team sports, sewing, cheer, and many, many more elective and enrichment courses, as well as core classes and tutoring for academic subjects. Visit our Enrichment and Electives page to learn more.
Our extensive list of over 400 vendors is parent-driven. If families want to use a local business that is not on our list, our staff will work with the business to create a working relationship whenever possible. Visit our Vendor Search page to view a list of currently approved educational partners.