Exploring The Arts 

Outdoor Art

As part of our College Prep program, our Club has traditionally offered a “City Club, which aims to introducteens to new experiences in New York City. In the past, many of the outings featured trips to Broadway shows and museums. We deeply believe that young people benefit from cultural and other new experiences – broadening their outlook on the world and introducing a range of careers. However, with New York City’s cultural options limited these days and with safety concerns top-of-mind, the Club has continued to think creatively to give kids enriching experienceout of the city. 

In November, when kids had a few days off of school, our Teen Program Director, Stephanie Urio, came up with an outing that offered both fresh air and art. On a crisp fall day, the group travelled to Storm Kingan outdoor art museum in New Windsor, NY, where Club members spent two hours walking the vast grounds to consider the massive sculptures. It was an interesting combination of art and nature and the changing fall leaves added an extra element of beauty. The teens reported that some of the favorite sculptures included the Buddha, Sea Change, the Eyes, and Mirror Fence. The reflective aspects of Mirror Fence and the surrounding mountains made that a great spot for pictures and enjoying one another’s company. Both our teens and Club staff were glad to have had the chance to spend time together and reflect on this art experience.  

Exploring the Culinary Arts

Younger children also had a chance to explore new experiences through our Kids in the Kitchen program. This program is a favorite, and younger children enjoy learning to make things from scratch. While they are feeling empowered as chefs, we take every opportunity to teach them about nutrition at the same time.  

Last month, our fourth-grade group had a lot of fun making veggie spring rollsSince we didn’t have to “hide the veggies” for this one, we snuck in something else: a lesson in teamwork and listening. To this end, our fourth graders discussed what they wanted to prepare and the group made its final decision together, making sure that they took turns listening to each other and understanding everyone’s feelings. During the discussion, the kids also learned about different types of sushi and where it originated. It was great seeing our kids learning and eating something new. In fact, some of the kids had never eaten a spring roll before and wanted more… even with all those veggies!