Ever since Enrico and I met more than a dozen years ago, we shared many values. But one that became clear as we decided to have little ones join us as a family, was bilingualism. We both come from families where English was not the first language. We both place incredible value in diversity of all sorts (cultural, economic, social), and we both know our children will spend most of their time in school (as sad as that may sound). So we wanted to make sure they had a solid foundation to love school, to be bilingual, to appreciate diversity, and to embrace their cultures. The only way to start was through La Escuelita (www.laescuelitanyc.org).
La Escuelita is the first Spanish-English bilingual preschool in the Upper West Side of Manhattan. It is relatively young at just over 12 years and yet, it is THE best bilingual preschool anywhere. The teachers and staff are top notch, caring, and accessible. As preschool is usually the first time a child separates from their parents, it is crucial to make it a success. I have to thank La Escuelita for Pilar's success already in Kindergarten. Her transition has been as smooth as it can be and her teachers comment on her kindness and her love for bilingualism. They talk about how proud she is to speak in Spanish (she does attend a dual language program in NYC) and the impact that has on her classmates. That's just on top of excelling academically. She is eager to do her homework and to follow directions, but yet be cooperative in the classroom and outside. As the world increases in becoming borderless with so many cultures anywhere you go, it is imperative to start as early as possible getting our children to appreciate each other as different as each is. La Escuelita places incredible value in diversity of all sorts and that is why it has consistently provided tuition assistance to 25% of its families. It's commitment to a reflection of the world we live in, is that beginning of guiding the children to become contributing global citizens. Help me keep La Escuelita running amazing programs (it is not just a preschool, but also a summer camp, an afterschool and a place for playgroups!) to a diverse body and spreading the quality work of play-based bilingual education.
Keep me motivated to complete the triathlon by donating ANY amount to my cause!