Did you know that there are dragon trees and a pine forest on Adelphi's Garden City campus?
Did you know that there are dragon trees and a pine forest on Adelphi’s Garden City campus? There are. To see them, all you have to do is look through the eyes of the littlest Panthers—the children who attend Adelphi’s Alice Brown Early Learning Center (ELC).
The current exhibit in the Ruth S. Harley University Center (UC) Art Gallery offers the opportunity to do just that. Titled Relationships: The Heart of Learning Belonging, Being, Becoming, it features the children’s art and illustrates the pedagogy of the ELC.
The ELC follows the Reggio Emilia Approach, which emphasizes the whole child, as opposed to focusing on academic readiness. The exhibit focuses on three aspects of the children’s education:
- Belonging: Children feel they belong to a family, school, community or place.
- Being: Children develop a sense of self and well-being.
- Becoming: Educators help children explore the interconnectedness of relationships and experiences that support their development through childhood and into the adult they will become.
Laura Ludlam, M.S.Ed. ’00, ELC director, explained that exploring the Adelphi campus and meeting members of the community are favorite activities for the children and contribute to their development. As the exhibit notes: “Through this exploration, the children discovered that they are part of something bigger than themselves.”
When the children saw a campus map and questioned why their favorite places to explore and visit weren’t included, they collaborated on the 3-D display Our Adelphi: The Important Places. Other works inspired by the campus are an impressively realistic model of the Nexus Building and a more artistic interpretation of the Panther statue, portrayed in blocks.
The exhibit also shows how children reflected on themselves—literally—by studying their mirror images and then drawing self-portraits, as well as exploring light and shadow, food, and the natural world.
The children and their efforts were celebrated with an art opening on June 20, 2018, where they got to share their work with family and friends, enjoy refreshments and, for many, make a beeline for the illuminated sand table.
The children are not the only Adelphi members who benefit from the ELC. The center acts as a training ground for Adelphi students to do internships and fieldwork. Many go on to obtain employment as teachers.
The exhibit will be in the UC Art Gallery through Wednesday, August 1, 2018.
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