Back to school: Preschoolers excited to begin new adventure at Oakland Family Services' Children's Learning Center

Mirykal stood in front of a bookcase inside her classroom with a big smile on her face as her parents took photos on their cell phones.

“It’s your first day of preschool! Look at me,” said her father, Mark Shelton. “Now, give Daddy a kiss. I love you.”

The 3-year-old gave him a kiss on the cheek before happily heading off to a day full of new adventure.

“I knew she would do good,” the teary-eyed father said. “I’m excited for her. Our neighborhood has older children. I’m looking forward to her playing with kids her age.”

The first day of school at Oakland Family Services’ Children’s Learning Center in Pontiac brought out a mix of emotions for both the children and parents. Some were excited and eager to begin the school year while others were shy or shed some tears.

“He’s doing better than me,” Anita Dodson said about her son, Bryce. “I’ll probably be crying in the parking lot. I hope after school he tells me that he had a good day, and that he met some new friends.”

Parent Jakresha Cottingham stood outside of a classroom door peeking in to see how her son, Avian, was adjusting. The 4-year-old, who came bursting through the lobby doors grinning ear to ear, seemed quite comfortable in the classroom. He sat next to the assistant teacher clapping to a song she was singing.

Meanwhile down the hall, teacher Heather Brady was busy showing her students the daily schedule, which included breakfast, outside time, work time, lunch and large group activities. Several of the children sat attentively on the carpet, but two little boys opted to get acquainted by playing with zoo animal figurines.

When 3-year-old Ameerah arrived at her classroom, she was clinging to her mother’s leg. Her teacher, Kene Oden, bent down and greeted her with a warm smile.

“We are going to do some fun things today,” she reassured her.

Oakland Family Services operates Children’s Learning Centers, which offer both Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) and tuition-based classrooms, in Pontiac and Walled Lake. The centers offer a warm learning environment that ensures students enter kindergarten ready to succeed. To learn more about our Children’s Learning Centers, call (248) 858-7766 ext. 1254, or fill out this form.