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"Dancing for the Children" raised $4,600 for OCC enrichment programs.

An amazing team of Briarcliff High School students, under the leadership of Jasmine Bar, raised $4,600 for our enrichment programs through "Dancing for the Children," a fundraising event. Jasmine and her team invited area dance studios to perform in a concert at Briarcliff High School on April 24.  The concert featured modern dance, Irish step dancing, Indian ethnic dance, Bollywood dance, a great a capella singing group, and a martial arts demonstration. Thank you to the great leadership team who produced the event: Jasmine Bar, Emma Burns, Komal Keerthy, Kelly Hooper, Kayla Owen, Madelein Elkes, Sarah Kaul and Shreya Patel.

Here are some highlight from Howard's Spring Report to the OCC Board

Program

This month’s preschool experiences centered on learning about our community.  Our Young Three’s began their unit about the supermarket, where they transform the dramatic play area into their own “Stop and Shop.” Empty food boxes and containers line the shelves, and the children enact the roles of shoppers and staff with grocery carts, cash registers, and play money. The Three Year Old and Pre-K classes had visits from a variety of important community helpers.  Police officers and paramedics arrived in their vehicles, allowing the children to sit in the front and press the siren buttons, and explaining their roles in helping our town.  Dr. Samberg, a pediatrician visited and explained her job of helping to keep children healthy.  And our local librarian, Debbie Fletcher, came to read stories and poems to the children.

This month our preschool and Pre-K classes visited the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum, where they  climbed, crawled and scooted their way through the multi-level, interactive space. They viewed a twelve-foot tall mastodon fossil skeleton, a replica of the one that was found in a backyard in Hyde Park, NY. The children also donned head-to-toe fire-fighting gear in the fire truck exhibit, so they could save the day by putting out a pretend fire.    

Our school-agers have been engaged in a number of absorbing craft projects.  They made bird feeders out of wood and paper mache, and decorated their rooms for spring with construction paper flowers and butterflies. They also created “Lorax” hand puppets out of foam sheets and pipe cleaners, in commemoration of Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

Personnel

Our entire staff attended the New York State Association for the Education of Young Children’s Conference, which was held in Westchester this year.  Our staff was particularly inspired by the keynote speaker, Judy Shachner, a well-known children’s author.  As a result, an extensive author study of her works is planned for our preschool children this summer.

Parent Involvement

The Children’s Center families are combining with families served by Neighbor’s Link in a five day 15-hour workshop on creating and using organic cleaning products that are environmentally safe and family friendly. This eco-cleaning workshop also teaches effective work habits, customer service and business management skills that will help them in starting their own businesses. 

Community Involvement

The teens in St. Ann’s Youth Group held a carnival for our children.  They created many exciting booths with such activities as bowling, a photo booth with special props, freeze dance, and face painting.

The Children’s Center has participated in a voter registration drive thanks to the work of Dawn Greenberg, our special Center advocate from Chappaqua.

We have reached out to Reverend Lopez of Iglesia Mana De Vida Eterna that shares the Methodist church with us.  We will be visiting his congregation in the near future to discuss the Center and how our services might be of use to them.