Tuesday, July 13, 2010

EOY Artshow Competition

Hi everyone, hope all of you are enjoying summer so far! At the end of May, Dallas HIPPY held three different End of Year Celebrations for our families. We had around 600 attendees at each of the EOY's, which was very exciting! During the EOY Celebrations, every HIPPY parent and child were honored for finishing their current program year by walking the stage to receive a certificate and other goodies provided by National Council for Jewish Women (NCJW) and HIPPY. Afterwards, the families celebrated their achievement over cake and lemonade. Something new this year that we tried out at Dallas HIPPY was hosting an Artshow Competition. We awarded prizes for the winners at the End of Year Celebrations and featured their artwork on HIPPY merchandise that was available for sale to HIPPY families and staffmembers. We asked all of the families to have their children draw a picture of their "HIPPY school at home" and we ended up with some really great artwork from the kids. We selected three winning drawings, they belonged to Benny Cornejo, Daanae Subias, and Estephanie Carillo. To see the winning drawings and our new HIPPY merchandise, visit http://www.cafepress.com/texashippy. Hope everyone has a good summer!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Springtime is Here!

Springtime is in full swing here at Dallas - flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, and it's time for field trips! This past Friday I accompanied a group of HIPPY families and home instructors on a field trip to the Dallas Public Library for a preschool bilingual storytime. The library staff read to the kids about the sounds that different animals make and how flowers grow in springtime. The staff then led everyone in the Hokey Pokey and another song in dance in Spanish. Afterwards the library staff brought out an empty plastic pot for each child, two big tubs of dirt, and a bunch of carnation stems. The children, with the help of their parents, filled their pots with dirt and "planted" a couple of carnations in each of their pots to create their own flower pots. The kids seemed to really enjoy hearing the story about planting flowers and then getting to take home their very own flower pots - it was very cute!

Some of the other field trips that we have coming up is one to the Flight Museum, one to the Trinity River Audobon Center, one to the Dallas Zoo, and one to the Dallas Arboretum. Should be a great experience for our HIPPY Families!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Recruiting Burmese Refugee Families

Hey everyone, I hope everyone's winter breaks went well and that you all got some good R&R. Currently, I'm working with a coordinator and home instructor here at Dallas to try to reach out to some of the Burmese refugee families that have settled in the Vickery Meadows area- a super culturally diverse area. Because of the oppresive military regime now in power in Burma and the lack of human rights, thousands of Burmese people have fled to America. In meetings with the International Rescue Committee and Heart House in Dallas, I've learned that the Burmese are very open to learning and that they would really benefit from a program like HIPPY. The problem with this is that there are 3 different languages spoken in Burma and trying to find interpretors is proving a difficult task. Thankfully we believe the IRC will be able to provide us with a translator for the first month or so but after that we will have to enlist the help of volunteers in the community that are able to translate. We've been told that the Burmese are a very community- oriented culture so maybe we'll be able to find someone that would be willing to help us out on this. So, we're trying to move forward with this so that we can hopefully start these families doing the HIPPY program pretty soon! If anyone has any suggestions please let me know.