STACKS, our free enrichment program for children in grades K-5, continues online this fall.
We spoke with several staff members about their experiences working with students virtually and some of the benefits of the STACKS program.
"Working with students virtually has been exciting and challenging. One has to think about activities in a different way. Instead of face to face interaction, they see you but you don’t see them. However, just like face to face interactions, once they become familiar with you, as a regular presenter, the students relax and interact with you verbally and freely," says Fredine Freeman, STACKS Leader at Queens Village Library. "Looking forward to the fall season allows me to make necessary changes in planning. There will be activities that will deal with upcoming holidays and events. This is a perfect opportunity to present experiences in reflection, creativity, education, and just plain old fun." According to Freeman, a highlight of the summer STACKS program was Snacks with STACKS: "Once a week there would be a cooking demonstration of healthy snacks presented. The ingredient theme usually would be fruits or veggies. The students loved talking about flavors and the ingredients. Plenty of conversation was generated with this group."
"What I love the most about STACKS is the fact that it is so versatile. Our STACKS students experienced all types of programs. Whether it is academic, arts and crafts or games, there are so many forms of learning through our programs which makes it so beneficial. Students are given the opportunity to create hands-on activities while simultaneously learning about different topics. STACKS also created a community of its own. So many friendships were formed because of this program, whether it was with students or with parents, STACKS is a place they come together to bond," says Maria Sultana, STACKS Leader at Jackson Heights Library.
Azreen Hasan, STACKS Leader at Jakson Heights Library, spoke of the importance of connecting with students virtually during this time when STACKS cannot happen in person. "Now more than ever, we need to be able to connect with our students and ensure they are developing their social, emotional, cognitive, and hands-on skills in a secure online environment. When speaking to my students virtually, many of them expressed how much they miss STACKS being in person. Although we are in a new platform of learning, I have found so many alternative creative ways to keep our students feel engaged and connected."
Priscilla Munoz, STACKS Leader at Flushing Library, described some of the benefits of working virtually. "Working with students through the STACKS Virtual World has given me the opportunity to extend my interaction with kids from all over the Queens borough! It was impressive to see how well the students have been able to adapt and transition to participate in this new reality."
"My favorite part of working with the STACKS students is seeing how much they have enjoyed a program. Seeing their artwork or them participate in sing alongs and answer trivia questions has been a real treat," shared Sotalia Black, STACKS Leader at South Hollis Library.
Coretta Osmond, mother of third-grader Connor, said that overall the program was great. Her son's favorite experience was writing about his hero. She enrolled her son because he needed something to stimulate him during the time he was at home. She recommends STACKS as it was "very engaging and educational."
Enrollment for STACKS begins September 21 and the program launches on October 5. Join the learning and fun! Learn more here.
Five Steps to Sign up for STACKS
1. Provide the following required information:
a. A valid e-mail address that you check frequently. This is our primary communication method with families.
b. Contact phone number (preferably mobile)
c. General student info (name, grade, etc.)
2. Access the enrollment form here.
3. Complete the enrollment form carefully. Please make sure to type your email address correctly, otherwise you won’t receive our messages. After completing your enrollment form, you will receive a message confirming your entry into the program.
4. Make sure to check your e-mail on Friday, October 2, for your STACKS Welcome message and official access to our STACKS Virtual World website.
5. Remember to join our inaugural day of STACKS Virtual World—Fall 2020. We can’t wait to see you there on Monday, October 5!