Not the typical Jones juniors

Jones to host two events for elementary school students


Over the coming weeks, Jones will welcome grade school students for two workshops: Junior Dance Camp and Junior Jones Jam. 

Taking place on Oct. 21, the first annual Junior Jones Jam, modeled off Jones Jam for high schoolers, will bring in a class of fifth grade students to experience a day of computer science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) activities.

“Every January, Jones hosts a computer science and STEM event for high schoolers called ‘Jones Jam’,” said Kathryn Harper ‘23, Co-President of Girls Who Code. “Now, we are doing that for the fifth graders at Lincoln Elementary.”
While this year’s Junior Jones Jam includes one school only, organizers hope to open it up to more elementary students in the future. 

“We’re starting with fifth graders from just one elementary [school] and then, if this is successful, we can open this up to more kids,” said AP Computer Science teacher Michael Kolody, the sponsor for Girls Who Code.

Lincoln Elementary students are in for a full-day at this first-annual event, with multiple opportunities to take part in projects run by Jones students. 

“Different STEM clubs are preparing a few workshops each,” said Drew Rosenberg ‘23, Vice President of Computer Science Honors Society (CSHS). “For example, CSHS is doing a Minecraft workshop and an EarSketch, a digital music-making platform workshop.”

Throughout the day, students will attend other events besides the workshops. 

“Younger students will get to interact with older students and take part in a school tour and see the facility,” said Kolody. “There will be a group event to end the day, which includes ice cream.”

Junior Jones Jam creates a space for connections between elementary and high school students, which event-organizers find really important. 

“I think there is a lot of desire from our students to make the world better and to work with younger people,” said Kolody. “I also think it is exciting that we are reaching beyond the Jones community, even at this pilot-stage of the event.” 

Kolody also added that organizers hope students will leave with a possible interest in computer science.

“The idea is that knowing something about computer science and STEM can enhance whatever your future course of study is,” said Kolody. “I would like students to leave knowing they can be creative with computer science and that it could be a part of their lives.” 

On the other hand, the Jones Dance Team will welcome students ages kindergarten through sixth grade for a three-day dance camp on Sept. 26-28 in the afternoons. This will culminate in a performance with the varsity dance team at the annual breast cancer awareness Dig Pink volleyball game. 

“The captains of the dance team will be teaching [the kids] different techniques and a routine,” said Jazmyne Davis, the dance team’s coach. “The goal is for them to learn from dancers that are older so that they can see what it’s like to be a varsity dancer in high school.”

Students planning to attend the camp are not expected to have prior experience. Despite the goal of students getting mock experience as varsity dancers, it’s about more than attracting future Jones dancers. 

“Our goal is to bring awareness to breast cancer,” said Davis. “We’re hoping that the kids will bring more kids out because you want to see the performance.”

Overall, both events are looking forward to seeing some new faces in the building. 

“While it is ambitious to have this event early in the year, I am super excited and I can’t wait for [Junior Jones Jam] to become an annual thing,” said Kolody. 

Davis echoes Kolody’s sentiments about the upcoming dance camp. 

“Our ultimate goal is to just make sure that everyone has a good time and promote school spirit,” said Davis.