An education in the arts empowers children and youth in so many important ways. It encourages self-expression, curiosity, innovation … and, of course, creativity. Now more than ever, this world needs creative thinkers. We need people who can imagine beautiful and radical possibilities for our future, and who have the courage to manifest those possibilities in the world around them: through song, dance, images, and through the relationships they forge with their peers. I look forward to helping my students cultivate these skills, so that they can move forward into this challenging year with hope, confidence, and kindness. – Mirka Loiselle
Thinking back to my school years, the happiest and most exciting memories are not associated with studying a multiplication table, or writing endless chemical equations. It’s the priceless experiences and discoveries born in the playground. It’s all the valuable lessons learned while making DIY costumes for a talent show, rehearsing choreography, or creating props for a school play. Today, more than ever, children need more opportunities to connect, collaborate, and have a feeling of togetherness. I believe our programs can help make a difference. Participation in fitness based activities and creative discovery will ultimately help kids to be more emotionally resilient and deal with many challenges they are faced with today. – Alena Tuchina
As adults, we are responding to this pandemic differently. Some of us with courage and compassion, and others with reasonable fear. I’m curious about what kids are thinking. If we can unearth their inner thoughts, we can help the next generation of leaders to become aware of uncertainty, and to respond with strength. Lively debates, “what if” scenarios, and multiple perspectives can foster empathy. Let’s give little humans an opportunity to have many thoughtful conversations about our current realities. – Orchid Chen
Extra-curricular programs and the arts are the reason I am the person I am today. As a professional dancer, I have realized through the pandemic that no matter where I am – I need to dance. Whether in my living room, an empty yet spacious Wal-Mart parking lot or a studio, dance is my fuel. It has been the bright spot in my day for the six months and having a moment to connect with other dancers sharing that same need for joy gives me so much energy. I have been fortunate enough to dance across the world and if there’s one thing I know, it’s that dance is a universal language that connects us all. It’s organizations like Playocity that we need more than ever right now, wherever you may find yourself. – Bailey Woodman
As we are moving forward with technological progress, it becomes more noticeable that our kids have fewer opportunities to engage in active play. In other words, children spend less time learning through play. Some examples of playful activities include storytelling, painting, singing, exploring, dancing, pretending, and imagining. Above all, playful learning is a very important part of early childhood education and development. It is something that adults have an obligation to provide for their kids. Art and movement-based programs for kids are great ways to introduce playful activities in childcare, school, or homeschooling learning environment.
Jessica Smock talks about the importance of learning through play and why kids deserve a preschool that lets them play. She does a great job explaining the benefits of enrolling children in schools that understand that play.
An extensive body of research claims the gains of extra-curricular activities translate into improvements in academic skills.
According to the article written by Sam Alhadeff, published in Cornell Policy Review, “Involvement in these activities could have dramatic impacts on the future success of individuals and allow children and adolescents to develop an identity, interact with peers, and experience following orders from an adult role model. Examples of socio-behavioral skills developed through EA participation include non-cognitive skills – e.g., attentiveness, task persistence, independence, and eagerness to learn – and social skills – peer-to-peer interaction, respect for authority, and teamwork. An extensive body of research claims the gains of EAs are found in these socio-behavioral skills, which then translate into improvements in academic skills.”
In conclusion, Enrichment Programs offer amazing high energy activities that focus on movement, arts, and team building. It is a great opportunity for children to learn through play, explore, and discover their talents. Participation in extra-curricular clubs reinforces creative learning as a tool to initiate improvements in academic skills.