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Summer Bridge Extension Program 2022
Ridgefield School District
Grade level/Age Range of Students in Program:  K-12

Primary Student Needs Program is Designed to Address

The goal of Summer Bridge Extension is to provide a continuation of our favorite experiences beyond the official end of the school year. We navigated another year with challenges, so this summer the Bridge Program is an opportunity to provide MORE connecting, engaging, project-based opportunities for all of our students.

The Boys and Girls Club is a community partner for after Bridge Extension programming and provides for a full day experience.

Best Buddies is an after Bridge Extension program running from 12 noon to 3 pm Monday to Friday, from July 11 to August 5. This is an opportunity for children to engage and play with peers who receive special services.

Both of these programs provide unique opportunities for engagement beyond Summer Bridge Extension.

Website for program

Most Innovative or Successful Elements of the Program

The project-based approach used in the Intensives has been appealing to both teachers and students. The intention is to bring more of these kinds of learning experiences into the regular curriculum during the school year.

How Are the Outcomes of the Program Measured

  • Attendance
  • Feedback from students and parents.

Operational Features

Dates of operation, days of operation, hours of operation, community partners (if any), transportation availability

Elementary – PK-grade 4    600 children over the three sessions
Session 1: July 5th to July 8th        Session 2: July 11th to 15th    
Session 3: July 18th to 22nd  8:30 am to 12:30 pm – snack is provided, no transportation.
Each weeklong session students play learning games that reinforce math skills, read their favorite books, and use their imaginations to problem solve new creations in art and STEM. Outdoor time and snacks are provided.

There is an afternoon program from noon – 2 pm for teacher selected students who require Multi-Tiered Systems of Support. The program is held twice a week during the summer sessions.

The Boys and Girls Club is a community partner for after Bridge Extension programming.

Best Buddies is an after Bridge Extension program running from 12 noon to 3 pm Monday to Friday, from July 11 to August 5. This is an opportunity for children to engage and play with peers who receive special services.

Middle School – 2 day Jump Start for rising grade 6 students to become familiar with middle school and form friendships – June 29 & 30

Intensives - a series of 3-day courses that run between July 5th and July 15th from 9 am - 12 pm.  148 students  no transportation

Rising 6-8 grade students can apply for 3-day intensive project-based courses. The course offerings cover many different areas and provide the opportunity to work with peers and teachers on out-of-the-box experiences. (see course offerings included at the end of the document)

High School  no transportation

High School Readiness course - July 12-14 and July 26-28

Sessions run
Intensives offer incoming and current high school students the opportunity to engage in an highly engaging, interactive, multi-disciplinary courses of their choosing over 3 to 4 days in July. Time 9 am – noon.   90 students
Intensives Course Offerings – Ambitious Kitchen, Creative Writing, Explorations in Computer Science, Design Depot, Problem Solving, True Crime Studies (see descriptions included at the end of the document)

RPS Bridge Volunteers – an opportunity for high school students to earn summer volunteer hours by volunteering in the Summer Bridge Programs at the Elementary and Middle School levels.   30 students

Course Recovery – a free of charge opportunity for students who are in need of the option to recover a course or make up tests are contacted by the course teacher or student’s guidance counselor  - 30 students    month of July


Staff Selection/Recruitment Procedures

Teachers are invited to submit proposals for Intensives.

Student Selection/Recruitment Procedures

Primarily self-selection, except for high school course recovery. Elementary teachers reach out to student and families who would benefit from the after Bridges program through the Boys and Girls Club.

Program Coordinators (all are teachers with 092 certification)

Jennifer Hilderbrand, Director, at
Kristin Kleis, Director at
Middle School:
Amanda Johnson, Co-Director, at
Shane Peters, Co-Director, at
High School:
Eileen Stewart, Director RHS July Intensive Courses, at,
Jenn DeJulio, Director Course Recovery and Jump Start HS at

RPS Middle School Intensive Course Descriptions

Come enjoy time outside, away from screens and books! This course will allow you to spend time in the garden at SRMS. You will have the opportunity to grow vegetables and plants and learn about the care of the garden, including companion plants and insects. Be prepared to get dirty as we will also spend time cleaning up and creating a more sustainable environment in the area.

The Outdoor Kitchen
Harvesting, foraging, preparing, and cooking ingredients outside has been taking place for the last million years, and participants in this course will do just that!  Though the farm-to-table movement is a relatively recent one, the concept is as old as humans' ability to forage and work with fire.  Participants can expect to learn about cultivating and harvesting crops, ingredient preparation, and bringing those ingredients together to create something delicious.  We'll see you in the outdoor kitchen, chef!

Board Game Maker Palooza!
Stay out of TROUBLE this summer and improve your LIFE by joining this fun packed game based course. Use your creativity to climb the CHUTES & LADDERS of success by creating and developing your very own unique board game. You may not have a CLUE now but you may just create a MONOPOLY of board games.    Come brainstorm together the theme, age group and level of difficulty of your game. You will be SORRY if you don’t!!!

Project Adventure
Interested in Project Adventure in the indoor room at SRMS? This is the course for you!! You will participate in team-building activities, low elements and high elements including the climbing walls.  You will learn how to put on a harness, how to belay, and how to be part of a belay team.  The best part- you can climb to the top of one of the walls or the dangle duo, wave down to your friends and then repel down.

Bake & Cook Like a Pro!
Want to gain some mad kitchen skills? This course goes beyond what you may have learned in FACS or at home and will improve your kitchen game. Cupcakes and pizza from scratch, a lasagna meal with salad and bread (make Ranch dressing from scratch!),four kinds of chocolate chip cookies, and a chocolate layer torte are in the plans. Bam!!

VR/AR Exploring and Creating a 3D world!
Ready to explore and build in the VR/AR world? Using merge cubes, goggles and AR apps, you will hold 3D objects in the palm of your hand, explore the world and build your own 3D world!

Ever wonder how a rocket works?  This three-day course will allow you to learn the basics of how rockets work and to build three rockets.  The build level will increase in complexity but so will the height that they go.  It’ll be a blast…

The Craft Corner!
Care to let your creativity shine? Blanket-making, friendship bracelets, painting, Ben's Bells, meditation jars and MORE! Come get your craftiness on! This will be a safe space where you can relax and form great new friendships with other creative people. We will work both inside and outside and produce some items for ourselves and some to share with our community.

Outdoor Education
Do you have a passion for the outdoors and a love of challenging yourself? Bring this passion and love to our Outdoor Education activity. Together we will explore the beauty of the local area, hike different paths of various difficulty, and design SRMS’s very own Disc Golf Course.

No Place for Hate Mural
Are you creative? Do you like hands-on activities? Sign up for this course and help us paint a No Place for Hate mural! Check out the link below for the inspiration picture. We’ll use this design as a guide and add our own touches. No prior art experience required!

RPS High School Intensives Course offerings

Ambitious Kitchen
In this fun, hands-on, experience-based course, students will explore and strengthen their culinary and baking skills. Under the guidance of certified culinary arts instructor, students will cook multiple diverse dishes each day and celebrate their combined skills by creating products, which can be taken home and shared with their families. While cooking independently and in small groups, students will learn and practice baking, sautéing, frying, whisking, folding and stirring, and knife skills, just to name a few. If you have a passion for cooking and baking or are curious about the realm of the culinary arts, join us for this unique four-day program!

Creative Writing
Creative writing takes many forms: we see it in blogs, stories, movies, t.v. shows, etc. Creative writing is seen as a connective outlet between our internal storytelling abilities, and the kinds of stories we look to tell. The idea of this course is to allow for students to explore the many different ways that creative writing can be pursued and designed. Together, we will learn exciting ways to brainstorm, how to edit creative writing, how to write creative stories, and have fun building our own imaginative worlds!

Explorations in Computer Science
Explorations in Computer Science Unplugged is a project-based exploration into topics within computer science, involving algorithmic thinking and design. This is a great opportunity for students who do not know anything about computer science to learn what it is all about and also an opportunity for experienced programmers to witness concepts they have seen and utilized in a different way.

Design Depot
Design Depot is an exploratory course where students can exercise their design skills in Interior and Fashion Design through hands on projects focusing on student interests in either area. Students will have the opportunity to work with various equipment, including sewing machines, 3D printer, CAD, and more. No previous experience is necessary!

Problem Solving
Students would be exposed interested to fascinating problems and opportunities that they don't get in the regular classroom. This would also provide experienced students with opportunities to improve skills. As a team, they will work collaboratively to solve problems from past math contests (NEML, FCML, and AMC) and learn helpful strategies for contest problems. The focus would be on the enjoyment of problem solving and perhaps a little friendly competition, not intense contest preparation.

True Crime Studies
Students will be investigating various true crime stories through multiple sources of media. Students will explore different popular true crime documentaries, podcasts, among other sources. The program will culminate with the students creating their own True Crime narrative using a variety of media.


Program Contact
Ms. Cory Gillette, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction   |