Thursday, January 16, 2014

Partnerships and Afterschool Programming

Through our afterschool program, we have the opportunity to bring enrichment providers and students together.  This opportunity allows all of us to learn something that we may not have learned otherwise, or to help us understand the multifaceted aspects of how we live in the world. Our list of partnerships is always growing and changing, allowing us to adapt to the needs of the community we serve. 

We often hear of cool things happening in our community through networks like APOST.  We find a way to establish a connection to that opportunity, which is usually through a relationship.  Then we ask, "How can we get our students involved in this opportunity?"  

This process inevitably lead to other connections within our community.  For example, because of our work with the Carnegie PopUp Library in Allentown, we got to meet Heather, Kate and Tara of Digital Salad.

At Grandview Elementary, this semester alone, we have partnered with five different local organizations. We've cooked with Gail and had a visit from Margy of the Fred Rogers Company to talk to our students about Word Play

Our fourth and fifth grade boys benefited from our partnership with the Hilltop Computer Center.

Through our Strong Women Strong Girls partnership, our fourth and fifth grade girls are mentored by students from Point Park University for twenty weeks during the school year.

The Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre has incredible teachers who taught dance and movement to our second and third grade class.  

Learning about Haiti through the Picture Pals Program by Haitian Families First helps our students to engage cross-culturally without having to leave the classroom.

We celebrated our partnerships and the end of a successful semester at our Healthy Holiday Party:  a collaborative effort of several community partners and individuals.   

We seek out partnerships because we want our students to experience a variety of learning opportunities.  In this way, we are all exposed to new perspectives.  Our hope is that in knowing these new perspectives, we learn not only about others, but about ourselves. 


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