Welcome back! Let’s get to it, okay? Okay!
1. WE MOVED!
This was one of the greatest moments of the year for us. We really cannot say enough about how much we love our new location. People walk in off the street to find out what we are! New volunteers come in droves to our orientations! We actually have plans for a storefront! Downtown Ann Arbor is beautiful in the evenings in winter! We’ve met so many new students, volunteers, parents, and people in the community. It’s been exclamation-mark-tastic!
Look! An arty picture of how it looks outside our window
as students start to arrive for workshops in October!
Many thanks to everyone who helped with our move, as well as those who helped welcome us to the community!
2. HIKONE COMMUNITY CENTER!
This year, we were lucky to meet the fine people of Community Action Network and help them out with their fine work at Hikone Community Center. Over the summer, superintern Ellen Fitzgerald taught creative writing workshops every week as part of their “Puppies are People Too” summer camp. All the students there loved Colby (our unofficial service dog mascot) so much, we decided to keep bringing her in. Now, Ellen’s back at Smith, but Colby goes in every other Wednesday. It looks something like this:
Okay, sometimes there’s licking.
Mostly, though, students read to her.
It addition to being our most adorable program, this project has also proven to be effective! Reluctant readers don’t feel judged by Colby, and they’re always excited to read to her.
In addition, one of our most favorite volunteers, Rosie Iordanova, has been going to Hikone every week with another stellar volunteer, Elyse Guilfoyle, as well. They’ve been teaching ongoing writing workshops for many of the students there. Thanks to Rosie and Elyse for continuing to be a positive influence in the lives of these students!
- Don’t forget about Mittenfest II!
- Tune in to Kids on Strike on WCBN 88.3FM between 9-10am tomorrow morning to hear the radio plays we’ve been working on with students from Mitchell Elementary for the last few months. More on that soon!