Seele Stars is a children’s theater company that does performance-based education through musical theater.
Seele Stars seeks to instill, foster, and improve children’s education and critical skills through the experience of the performing arts and musical theater values.
Students in every grade attend a Seele Stars class once a week and give a performance to the community once a year.
The instructor, Rachel Seele, is also an accredited teacher who has taught in the WCCUSD school district.
As an accredited teacher, Ms. Seele also gives much-needed prep time for teachers on a weekly basis during most of the school year.
Playworks is non-profit organization focused on helping kids to stay active and build valuable life skills through play.
Playworks implements a framework for play during recess that fosters organized play, conflict resolution, and leadership skills.
Harding “relays” with another local elementary school to share a Coach, who is then on site half-time.
The Coach organizes and leads Jr Coaches (4th, 5th, and 6th grade students) to develop the PlayWorks framework in younger grades. Junior Coaches get important leadership opportunities with younger grades. This also fosters community and connection between students across grades, who would otherwise not interact with each other.
PlayWorks was reintroduced to Harding after the return of in-person instruction following COVID, when administrators noted that many students needed additional support during unstructured times.
Playworks provides resources to replace shortages in yard supervision and PE teacher staffing.
Art Cart is a process-based, recess arts-engagement program.
Curriculum supports conflict resolution, student connection, mindfulness, and emotional well-being.
Facilitators set up multiple creative modality stations equipped with materials for “group space” around creative expression.
Art Cart creates multiple points of entry for students, through individual projects for those looking for a quiet moment, or group art projects that foster community and communication skills, and draw in those looking for connection with peers.
Art Cart was introduced to Harding following the return of in-person instruction after COVID, drawing on research that shows that art-making is an inherently healing and life-enhancing practice.
Art Cart, which is run by a licensed expressive arts therapist/child counselor and an artist/experienced facilitator, is available to students during their recess two days per week.
The PTA provides a per-student budget for teachers to supplement instruction and fund field trips. Teachers typically purchase art and science supplies as well as books for the classroom.
The PTA funds classroom supplies for all teachers and with equity in mind, reducing the burden on individual families to purchase supplies and teachers to use their own funds for classroom needs.
The classroom support needed changes every year, with every teacher, and every grade. The PTA communicates with teachers throughout the year in an effort to support the variety of needs that arise.
Programming we would like to be able to support!
- Garden coordinator with a nutrition/science curriculum
- Foreign language instruction
- STEM instruction
Others School Programs
4th-6th Grade Band Program
Band is available to all students in the 4th, 5th, and 6th grades. Prior experience is not required. There are two groups – beginner (typically 4th/5th grade) and intermediate (some 5th/6th) – that meet 1x per week during class-time. Because band students are pulled out of class for band, parent permission is required. There’s typically a performance at the end of the year.
Each school generally has 30 various (trumpet/flute/clarinet/sax) instruments for borrowing. These are generally lent out through a lottery system. Families can choose to rent instruments from a district store if they don’t get a school instrument; instruments can cost 25-50$ a month to rent.
After School Enrichment Programs (HASEP)
Harding Elementary has partners with the City of El Cerrito to provide after school enrichment classes, including sports, performing & mixed media arts, language, engineering, science, and technology in three sessions throughout the school year. Non-Harding School Students are welcome to register for classes.
There is a before and aftercare program at the nearby Harding Clubhouse run by the City of El Cerrito and an after school academic tutoring program.
Scholarships are available through the David Hunter Youth Memorial Scholarship, provided by City of El Cerrito.