The Spark! – September 2017

A Note From The Director

Dear Parents,

Welcome back! I can’t believe it’s already the end of September. “Back-to-school” is quite busy and I experience a double dose of it between seeing my daughter off to school and seeing the program here at Discovery off to a good start. September is a time of renewal and I have some exciting things to share. Discovery put in a new floor and cabinets in our art classroom. Come check it out on one of our Early Childhood tours. We still have spots available in our Practically Preschool and On My Own 2’s program. We created two new toddler classes: Play and Paint and Books Spark Art which is highlighted below, along with our teacher, Jen Katz. Parents looking for a fun workout should come join our Adult Parkour class on Monday nights taught by NYC Parkour legend Bryce Clark.  It’s not only a great workout but it’s fun too! The other thing I wanted to mention is the NY Times article, “How to Be a Modern Parent.” We’ve included a link below! It’s a great read, and, good news, “there is no one right way to raise a child.” 
Warm Wishes,

Katie Kheel
How to Be a Modern Parent
An Interview with

Jen Katz

Jen Katz, one of our Early Childhood instructors and Summer Camp Counselors at Discovery, is an UWS mother, teacher, and small business owner with over a decade of experience working with young children. Over the weekend, I connected with her to chat a little bit about her background and the brand new Discovery class she is teaching this fall, Books Spark Art
TC: When did you first begin teaching art, and what inspires you as an educator? 
JK: I began teaching art to children after receiving my master’s degree in Art Education. I always loved the freedom that I felt as an art student and the lack of boundaries in making art. 
TC: How do you see children learn and grow as they express themselves through art?
JK: I believe that from the very beginning of life, we all have an artistic voice. Visual arts is only one way to artistically express ourselves. Very young children are uninhibited and not afraid of making mistakes. This is the best time of life to be exposed to a variety of art media. When teaching art class, I often marvel at how different each child is at such an early age. There will be the child that takes just a dab of paint on their brush for an entire painting, while another will feel the need to fill the entire paper with paint. A child’s confidence and comfort level with art media will grow as they receive continual exposure to working with the materials. 
TC: Tell me more about your new class at Discovery, called Books Spark Art. How have you gone about shaping this incredibly fun and unique program?

JK: I’m excited to teach this class because it makes art for little ones more meaningful. Their favorite stories come to life as they are given a creative way to respond to the literature. For example, after reading “Harold and the Purple Crayon” by Crocket Johnson, we will make an exploration drawing with purple crayons on mural paper on the wall. The curriculum has a dual focus on both children’s literature and art exploration. We are not looking necessarily for a beautiful work of art as the end product of each class but rather to provide the children with a safe space to explore a variety of art media and an opportunity to get messy! 

-Tori Champion-
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Discovery Announcements!

Fall Holiday Closing Dates:

September 29th, 30th
October 4th, 5th, 6th, 9th, 11th, 12th, 13th
November 23rd, 24th, 25th
December 23rd-30th
January 1st, 2nd, 15th
Parent Viewing Week:
Our first Parent Viewing Day will be held in all classes during the week of October 16th-October 21st.  This viewing day is mostly for new parents who are not as familiar with our classes. Please keep in mind that the gym is short on space so we ask parents to take turns in the gym for 20 minutes. 
The second and final Parent Viewing Day will take place on either one of the last two sessions for each class, and a schedule for these end-of-term dates will be sent to you in November. 
Bring a Friend Week for Toddlers:
Toddlers can bring a friend to their class session during the week of October 23rd-28th!


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