San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

October 12th, 2009
You are now entering the Dad'Zone

Participants creating their own book in the Dad’Zone.


Submitted for your approval: A normal day at an elementary school in a pretty town in Texas. You see 20 fathers and 30 children enter the Hernandez Elementary School library to read, talk and partake in snacks together. Using the Dr. Seuss book, My Many Colored Days, the fathers share their emotions with their children.

You are now entering “The Dad’Zone.”

According to Dad’Zone program overseer Rob Rodriguez, the dads and their children recreated the book’s illustrations after a short dialogue. Three books were made by the families in attendance. The books are being bound and will be added to the Hernandez Elementary library for teachers to check out and read to their students.

The Dad’Zone is a program that allows fathers to volunteer in the school and spend extra time with their children during the day.

“A dad signs up to volunteer and is assigned to classrooms according to the needs of the classroom,” Rodriguez said. “They will spend time reading with students, help provide supervision, play games, or mentor students who are in need of extra support. We’ve had an overwhelming response from our fathers who want to participate in the program, signing up more than 40 dads in the first six weeks.”

Hernandez will hold events throughout the year enabling fathers to deepen their involvement in their children’s lives at school. Activities will include “play shops,” where dads learn how easy it is to stay connected and involved through fun activities. The fathers will also be able to volunteer at school or in the community through the “Super Saturday” activities.

Said Rodriguez, “We are most excited about expanding services of the Dad’Zone program and collaborating with Mendez, De Zavala, and Bowie Elementary schools for the 2009-2010 school year.”

In the past, Dad’Zone has served other San Marcos CISD programs through collaborations with the Even Start program, Crockett Elementary, and with the former Bonham Early Childhood Center.

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