What a Gift!

For the past year preschool students at St. Benedict Child Development Center benefitted from the “Long Term Residency” program that brought the Erie Philharmonic to their classrooms. On Monday, August 7, the year came to an end with the donation of book bags filled with school supplies and household items including soap, socks, books and more. The donation was designed to help the children make the transition to Kindergarten in the upcoming school year. Steve Weiser, the Erie Philharmonic executive director said: “We’ve been helping the children with music lessons this summer and we wanted to find a way to keep giving throughout the rest of their lives. What better way than actually having a book bag they can take with them? Not necessarily a memory of us, but simply a way to continue to support them.”

This first time ever Long Term Residency, begun in the fall of 2016, had teaching artist Sarah Lee visiting the center 60 times by the time February rolled around. The goal of the program was to create positive musical experiences for the children that promote early music appreciation. In addition, the Erie Philharmonic aimed to bring music into pre-kindergarten classes in order to aid language and literacy development as well as the organization and application of knowledge through creative thinking.

“This program has been a wonderful experience for our children and all of us at the Center,” said Sister Diane Rabe, Director of the Center. “It was memorable in so many ways and the donation of book bags is the perfect way to send these preschoolers to Kindergarten. A special year was brought to a very special conclusion. What a gift!”

Click on the arrow to view a photo collage. Clicking on individual photos will enlarge them for better viewing. Photos courtesy of Steve Weiser, Erie Philharmonic.

View TV news coverage (Erie News Now) here.