College for Kids coming soon to Aravaipa Campus

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The College for Kids Crew includes, from left, Jamie Wolgast, Robin Garcia, Wendy Torres and Julie Formo.

By John Hernandez

The Central Arizona College Aravaipa Campus is gearing up for the 27th annual summer program, College for Kids. The College for Kids provides a fun, hands on learning experience and allows kids to explore a number of subjects and themes.

The College for Kids is open to second through sixth graders from the surrounding communities including Oracle, San Manuel, Mammoth, Winkelman, Hayden, Kearny and Superior. Seventh graders or higher are encouraged to become student leaders.

This year’s theme is “Weather, Wild Weather”. Students will get to learn about weather conditions by building their own clouds and tornadoes, monitoring their own weather station, and will get the opportunity to inflate the “World’s Largest Solar Bag”. They will learn and study everything from renewable energy sources to monsoons and will even know what a haboob is by the time they finish having fun.

Tuition is $210 per child, which covers supplies, snacks, lunches, t-shirt and a group photograph. The program is limited to 40 students on a first come basis. Transportation is available in most communities.

For more information, contact Elissa Craig at (520) 357-2810 or email

Jamie Wolgast – Program Coordinator

Hi, my name is Jamie Wolgast, but the kids know me as Miss Jamie. I have been involved in the College for Kids program since 2007, and have been the Program Coordinator for the last few years. I am very proud to serve the beautiful communities in which we live. In my opinion, the kids are the best part! I love volunteering at my son’s school and working in my native plant nursery. A naturalist and botanist at heart, I also love gardening and spending most of my time outdoors with family and friends.

Elissa Craig – Assistant

Elissa Craig is the Secretary Administrative Support for Central Arizona College at the Aravaipa Campus. She has been an assistant to College for Kids since coming to the College in 2009. She is very dedicated to our program. 

Julie Formo – Teacher

My name is Julie Formo and I am a kindergarten teacher at the Mammoth Elementary STEM School. I graduated from Central Arizona College and was a member of the PTK. I attained my Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education at Northern Arizona University. I have been teaching for six years. As part of the STEM program, I integrate science, technology, math, reading, writing, etc. into project-based learning.

Higher-level thinking occurs as the students make connections within the systems and elements that they are studying. This will be my fourth year of teaching in the College for Kids Program. The students enjoy the scientific investigations, and this year, we will be learning about weather. It has been very rewarding for me to meet so many dedicated people and students from our Tri-Community area and beyond.

Robin Garcia – Teacher

Hi! My name is Robin Garcia and I have been a teacher for over 12 years.

I currently teach first grade, which I love! I love teaching kids how to read. There is no better reward than hearing a child read by himself for the first time. I have six kids and one grandchild, and in my down time I also love to read. I am looking forward to teaching College for Kids for my third year.

I am excited to do many fun projects with the children such as making their own clouds. I also want to use weather as a cross-curricular theme using math, reading, and writing.

Wendy Torres – Teacher

I have been teaching in the Mammoth/San Manuel School District for 22 years.  I try to engage students in active, hands-on activities where they can explore and use critical thinking while making connections in their learning. I want my students to be able to apply their learning to everyday life so they will be prepared to successfully face the future. I have attended 150 hours of training in STEM provided by the B2 Institute and The University of Arizona.


•Water Cycle/Rain: How do raindrops begin? Make a rain gauge (using a two-liter bottle). Make a rain stick. How do weather conditions affect a puddle? Make a hygrometer. 

•Do some colors create more heat than others? Make solar ovens using two boxes/glass.             

•Earthquakes:  What causes them? Where do they occur? How are they detected? Plate tectonics/seismic waves. Make a model to demonstrate how an earthquake occurs.             

•Meteors: Why are they hot? What happens when a meteorite strikes a planet? Barringer Meteorite Crater experiment.

•Wind: Make an anemometer. 

•Snow experiment

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