FREE KinderKit distribution for preschool families in April

FREE KinderKit distribution for preschool families in April

Promise’s Early Learning partners are once again distributing KinderKits for the upcoming school year. These FREE kits include household items that families can use for learning to help prepare your child for kindergarten.

In addition, each distribution event will also have information on childcare and home visiting to make sure your young learner is ready for kindergarten.

Stop by any one of these locations on the date and time below to pick up a KinderKit for your preschooler. KinderKits_girl

Outhwaite Community Center

  • Monday, April 16
  • Noon – 2 p.m.

King Kennedy Stokes Mall Community Room

  • Monday, April 23
  • Noon – 2 p.m.

Cedar Management Office Computer Lab

  • Wednesday, April 25
  • Noon – 2 p.m.

Thanks to Cleveland Metropolitan School District, Cleveland Metropolitan Housing Authority and Starting Point for partnering to bring KinderKits to Central’s families.

HIPPY cultivates learning and play with Children’s Reading Garden

HIPPY cultivates learning and play with Children’s Reading Garden

HIPPY, Home Instructions for Parents of Preschool Youngsters, is starting a new program in Central focused on creating a safe, outdoor place for learning and play. The HIPPY Children’s Reading Garden will offer educational and fun activities for preschool and elementary aged children from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays through July 28, 2017. Activities will be held in the exterior courtyard of in front of the Sara J. Harper Library located next to the Outhwaite Community Center on Quincy Avenue. Rainy day location will be the Louis Stokes Museum.

Dannette Davis, CMHA HIPPY coordinator, at the Children's Reading Garden.
Dannette Davis, CMHA HIPPY coordinator, at the Children’s Reading Garden.

During the March Promise Neighborhood March Advisory Council meeting, community members expressed a desire and need for more outdoor safe play spaces in the community. Promise Neighborhood early learning navigator Tatiana Wells took this feedback to Danette Davis, HIPPY coordinator, and the two organizations worked together to develop a place and program that would meet the needs expressed by community residents.

Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority police will patrol the area with a driven or stationed car, walking officer or even having the officers to volunteer to participate in the garden with children’s activities.

Parents are encouraged to attend the Children’s Reading Garden sessions with children, but it is not mandatory.

HIPPY is a parent involvement and school readiness program. The HIPPY program offers free home-based early childhood education for three, four and five-year-old children working with their parent(s) as their first teacher. HIPPY provides the parent with a set of developmentally appropriate materials, curriculum and books designed to strengthen their children’s cognitive skills, early literacy skills, social/emotional and physical development.

The Judge Sara J. Harper Library at Outhwaite Homes.
The Judge Sara J. Harper Library at Outhwaite Homes.

Programming for HIPPY has been available for Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) residents for more than 21 years. CMHA is the first housing authority nationwide that offers HIPPY programming as a part of the educational services for residents.

This program is available to the residents of CMHA’s Carver Park, King Kennedy and Outhwaite Estates. There is also open enrollment year round. Please call (216) 361-2367 extension 119 for questions or to enroll.

Preschool superheroes Parade the Circle

Preschool superheroes Parade the Circle

For the second year, Cleveland Museum of Art Parade the Circle outreach artists worked with YWCA Greater Cleveland Early Learning Center preschool children, staff and families for their appearance in the annual parade. Together, they produced this year’s theme as, YWCA Preschool Superheroes Save Kindergarten. Children chose their own superhero and parents and staff were villains out to destroy kindergarten. Outreach artist Chuck Supinski and Julia Ware helped the children create unique superhero characters.

“I would like to congratulate and applaud the staff and children of the YWCA Early Education Program. This is the second year my team and I have worked with your children and their teachers. We had a wonderful time creating superheroes. From the beginning, when the children created their own idea and superhero character to the dazzling end when they bejeweled their shield, a great time was had by all,” Supinski said. “I can’t say enough about your staff whose love and care for the children is reflected in the children’s interest and creativity. We look forward to next year’s Parade Project.”

Love Girl, preschool superhero gets ready for Parade the Circle
Love Girl, preschool superhero gets ready for Parade the Circle

Cleveland Museum of Art Parade the Circle artists worked YWCA staff and students to design each student’s superhero character, such as Tomato Man for the preschool boy who loves ketchup. He would squirt ketchup on his enemies to save to kindergarten. Love Girl loves giving everyone hugs and wanted to share love to save the day. Other superhero names include Moon Man, Ninja Boy, Acorn Girl, Super Butterfly Girl, and of course Flash Man.

“This year’s Parade the Circle experience was awesome! This was the YWCA of Cleveland’s second year being involved in the festivities and it just keeps getting better. The artists, Chuck, Julia, and Lu  were great and worked diligently (and tirelessly) helping us make our own costumes, the children  and staff loved it,” said Carol Lyles, YWCA Early Learning Center. “The artist’s and Tatiana’s enthusiasm and creativity made the process of preparing for the parade experience mega fun. I especially enjoyed working closely with the artists at the tent where the action was. Tatiana was the superhero who made all of it possible. It is amazing to see how an idea comes to fruition and blossoms into a grand project. We are all looking forward to next year, wondering, what will they come up with next?”

During the ten art sessions from May 10 – June 9 the students and teachers gleamed with joy making their capes, masks, belts, and shields. Teachers and parents visited the Parade the Circle tent site at Cleveland Museum of Art to make their villain costumes. The last two sessions included choreography from Ms. Story Robinson from Parade the Circle staff. On parade day, June 10, the YWCA Greater Cleveland group had 32 participants including parents, children, teachers, and Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood staff members, Tatiana Wells and Richaun Bunton. The superheroes swarmed the villains in the parade to take away their powers and saved the day.

The villains and preschool superheroes walk in Parade the Circle
The villains and preschool superheroes walk in Parade the Circle

“It is safe to say, the YWCA of Cleveland preschoolers are some of Cleveland’s finest superheroes! Thanks to these superheroes, all children are able to enter kindergarten safely,” said Tatiana Wells, Early learning navigator, Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood. “I enjoyed working with the teachers, students, and parade staff again this year. This was the best one yet. Looking forward to what we shall create next year.”

For 28 years, the Cleveland Museum of Art has been bringing this free signature summer event to Cleveland. During the event, University Circle comes alive with color, music, and art for all ages. International and national guest artists join Greater Cleveland artists, families, schools, and community groups in a spectacular display of bright costumes, giant puppets, stilt dancers, handmade masks, and colorful floats. Circle Village, which includes activities, entertainment, and food, is presented by University Circle Inc.

Preschool Read and Ride promotes family reading at home

Preschool Read and Ride promotes family reading at home

The first ever Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood early learning Read and Ride program awarded 14 preschool students with brand new bicycles. Promise Neighborhood preschool families read an outstanding 866 books and 116 families participated in the program.

“It was awesome to see the growth of Frederick and Diamond during the program,” said Maria Schulenberg, preschool teacher at Marion-Sterling Elementary of the school’s Read and Ride winners.

Deon'tae Pratt (left) and Diamond Bowling, preschool Read and Ride winners at William Patrick Day
Deon’tae Pratt (left) and Diamond Bowling, preschool Read and Ride winners at William Patrick Day

Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood envisions that every child is ready for kindergarten and that every third grader reads at third grade level. The early learning Read and Ride program is a fun, family-oriented activity that supports families in reinforcing reading at home.

“Deon’tae winning this bike is truly a blessing,” said Antoinette Pratt, grandmother of William Patrick Day winner Deon’tae Pratt. “With summer coming I’ve been wanting to get bikes for the kids, especially Deon’tae because he outgrew his old bike.”

Pratt used a number of community resources to get books for her and Deon’tae to read. She went to the library, received books from Help Me Grow and took advantage of the books provided by the Read and Ride program.

Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood hosted the Read and Ride program for early learning centers through a partnership with Starting Point and Kids Book Bank. The contest was held at seven Step Up to Quality rated early childcare learning centers located in the Central neighborhood. Families with children enrolled in these programs were eligible to win a bicycle if they read at least three books with their child. For each additional book read, the child’s name was placed in the drawing for the bicycle.

The Read and Ride program began at George Washington Carver Elementary in 2015 and is now held at all Cleveland Metropolitan School District elementary schools in the Promise Neighborhood. Read and Ride has been successful in motivating first and second grade students to expand their reading, so in 2017, Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood staff decided to expand the program to early learners.

Early learning and child care centers prepare children to transition to kindergarten. According to research, children who attend high-quality preschool enter kindergarten with better pre-reading skills, richer vocabularies, and stronger basic math skills than those who do not. Programs like Read and Ride can help improve a child’s vocabulary and increase their confidence. Children who read better tend to do better across all school subjects.

Frederick Grair, preschool Read and Ride winner at Marion-Sterling
Frederick Grair, preschool Read and Ride winner at Marion-Sterling

“The teachers at Marion-Sterling told me that Frederick was unable to recognize letters and having trouble sounding out letters. I worked with him every day to help him and after a while he got better and even asked to read on his own. He would tell me to let him read on his own and would return to school telling his teachers he read all his books on his own,” said Desharay Riley, mother of Frederick Grair. “It makes me feel good that he is improving and that I’m not just sending my kid to school and letting them do all the work, that I am helping my child. Marion-Sterling is a very good program and Ms. Schulenberg and Ms. Eileen are the best teachers. The Read and Ride program encouraged me and my son to keep reading.”

Bicycles were provided by Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood and books were provided by Kid’s Book Bank of Cleveland.

Find out more about early learning programs available in Central here.

Read and Ride program expands to early learning centers

Read and Ride program expands to early learning centers

Read and Ride is a program that aims to encourage young readers to increase their reading by awarding a bicycle to students who read the most books during the school year. Currently offered at Central elementary schools, the Read and Ride program is growing to include seven Step Up To Quality rated early learning centers in Central. Beginning April 1, 2017 until May 22, 2017, families who read a minimum of three books with their children at home will be entered into a drawing to win a bicycle. For each additional book families read, their child’s name will receive another entry in the drawing at their preschool location. At the end of the program, each of the seven early learning centers will pick two names, one boy and one girl, to receive a bike.

“Early care and education centers prepare their preschool children for the transition to kindergarten, but it’s important for kindergarten readiness to start at home too. Reading aloud to a child early and often has been proven to help their ability to learn once in school,” said Tatiana Wells, early learning navigator, Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood. “Promise Neighborhood envisions that every child is ready for kindergarten and that every third grader reads at third grade level and we hope the Read and Ride program can help our community reach those goals.”

Students at Marion Sterling Read and Ride bicycle drawing.
Students at Marion Sterling Read and Ride bicycle drawing.

Through partnership a partnership between Starting Point and the Cleveland Kids’ Book Bank , each of the participating early learning centers will receive books to give to families to help increase family reading time and build home libraries. All early learning centers and families participating in Read and Ride will also receive a certificate acknowledging their participation.

For the past two years, Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood and the Knights of Pythias have hosted the Read and Ride program for first and second graders at Marion-Sterling Elementary School, George Washington Carver STEM and Alfred A. Benesch Elementary School. Last year, Central students read 612 books and 165 first and second graders participated with more than a dozen bikes being awarded to raffle winners.

“We are in our third year of the Read and Ride program for Central first and second graders and every year we see the number of participants and number of books read grow,” said Dawn Glasco, engagement coordinator, Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood. “It’s exciting that some of our youngest readers will be introduced to the program before they enter school and will hopefully continue to participate through elementary school.”

 

Each early learning centers participating in the 2017 Read and Ride program is a Step Up To Quality five star rated center and includes:

  • Bingham Early Learning Center
  • Early Childcare Center at Arbor Park
  • Family Life Center of Cleveland
  • Outhwaite Head Start
  • William Patrick Day Head Start
  • YWCA Early Learning
  • Marion-Sterling Pre-K

Bicycles for the Read and Ride program at early learning centers have been donated by Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood. The first and second grade Read and Ride program is hosted through a partnership between Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood and the Knights of Pythias.