“Reading Buddies” is the new read-aloud initiative at the Nursery School started this year through PROJECT SEED. Joanna Segal, a long time member of Bet Torah whose three children attended Bet Torah Nursery School, is helping pilot the program along with Jo Kellman, early childhood specialist and Project SEED coordinator. Joanna reads in two classrooms, a threes class and a fours class for approximately one half hour in each room.
Research tells us that reading to young children is an extremely fruitful way to introduce them to the world of books. During “center time”, Joanna is seated in the “library area” of the classroom. Two or three empty, children’s chairs await the children who will choose that center. Children select the books they hope Joanna will read. As the book is completed, a chair is emptied and ready for the next Buddy.
As Joanne and Jo pass parents and children at entrance and dismissal times, there are warm “hellos” and smiling faces as folks greet Joanna in the hallways. Joanna worships at Shabbat services and is familiar to parents and children who are also attendees. Reading Buddies provides another opportunity to strengthen extended family bonds.
If you are interested in becoming a Project SEED Reading Buddy this year or in the fall, please see Director Mindy Citera to make plans to become part of this new initiative at Bet Torah Nursery School.
Project SEED (Supporting Children’s Early Emotional Development) is a collaboration between Westchester Jewish Community Services and the Jewish Education Project with additional funding from private donor families.