Ilene grew up in Bayside, Queens. She has a BA in Elementary Education from SUNY New Paltz and a Masters degree in Early Childhood Education from Queens College. Ilene worked as a preschool teacher at the Mid Island Y JCC for over 13 years. She was a mentor teacher, always helping to guide new teachers at her school. Ilene is an innovator in early childhood education, always researching new theories and programs to help her children get the skills necessary to succeed in today's society.
Presently, Ilene is introducing a STEM curriculum to Long Island at the Jericho STEM Academy Preschool at Jericho Jewish Center. The entire staff had to complete classes to become STEM certified which is a great accomplishment. Ilene was President of Shaloma Hadassah where she successfully raised funds to benefit Israel. Ilene resides in Plainview, NY. She has 3 wonderful children, Laura, Rebecca & Jason.
_________Message to Our STEM Families: September: Dear Families, A warm welcome to all for the exciting new beginning of our 2018-19 school year. I am honored to be the director of the Jericho STEM Academy here at Jericho Jewish Center. Our school is staffed by a group of highly dedicated and creative educators who are passionate about early childhood. Mr. Mike will continue with our music program.He has been teaching music to young children for over 15 years. He uses a multi sensory approach to keep the children engrossed during music class. This year we are very excited to introduce Eureka math to our students. This is a comprehensive, content rich math program that has been proven to work! Mindy and I are always here to meet your needs and answer your questions .Please do not hesitate to call us at 516-938-2540.
Early childhood is the gateway to learning & here at Jericho STEM we are committed to providing our children with the foundation needed for future success. Warm Regards, Ilene Morrin
____________________________________________________________________________ October: Dear Families, It’s hard to believe that Fall is here. We have been so fortunate to have great weather for lots of outside play. It seems like our pre-schoolers can’t get enough of the playground: swinging, running, climbing, and sliding. It’s amazing for us to see how they’ve already grown so much in the past two months. Thank you for sharing your children with us! The beginning of a school year is such a busy time: the children are getting used to a new routine, meeting new friends, and separating from home . All of the children have been doing awesome. Sometimes there are a few tears, but once they realize it’s going to be a lot of fun and form relationships with their teachers those tears dry right up! We strive to provide an environment rich in possibilities to explore, think, deduce and discover, not only for future success in school, but for success in life. We also strive to provide an environment which encourages respect and courtesy for ourselves and for others. The STEM curriculum at our school exposes children to a variety of cultural experiences that encourage the development of values such as respect for diversity, giving, sharing and learning to be good friends. Children also hold small “jobs” in class, such as snack & lunch helpers, door holder, line leader and line caboose. Children learn about responsibility and taking turns and how to recognize their names and other children’s names by referring to the job board. It will be getting cold out; please be sure your child has a warm coat, a hat, and mittens as we will still be playing outside in the fresh air. Also, if your child is ill, has had a fever or vomited; they should remain home for 24 hours before returning to school. We are going to do our best to keep everyone healthy during these “germy” months. Thank you!
Scholastic Books Each month the preschool will participate in this book program, that many of you probably remember from your own childhood. There are numerous books to choose from each month and at a discounted rate! The preschool benefits by earning bonus points, that we can use to buy books and materials for the classroom!! Warm Regards, Ilene Morrin Director _____________________________________________________________________________ November: Thus far this school year has been a success for teachers and children because we have settled into our daily routines and are following our busy schedules. Each classroom has established rules with the children in their class. The rules although worded differently in each class are all about respecting each other, caring for self, others and the school. The children are making friends and are completing daily STEM activities in their classrooms. Our school is now STEM accredited. I want to thank my wonderful staff for their dedication to completing the mandated STEM training. Thanksgiving is one of our themes for November. Our learning themes integrate into each of our subjects making learning new and fun. We will be counting turkeys and feathers at Math Time and learning about history and geography with the story of the first Thanksgiving. Our children have many reasons to be thankful. I am sure you are all beginning to plan your holiday activities and some quality time with you children. Thanksgiving is a great time of year to establish new family traditions to compliment the old. Children love tradition. My adult daughters still insist that we set the table in the same way and make the same food for Thanksgiving. Traditions define us. They provide us with memories, reliability, and stability. Traditions give us safety in a sometimes confusing and chaotic world. Those of us that are parents know the importance of positive feedback, but in the hustle bustle of the day how many of us remember to provide our children with deliberate, specific words of encouragement and reinforcement? Here are a few easy tips and guidelines on how to recognize good behavior, support healthy self-esteem and increase your little ones learning. • Speak to others when your child is doing something great. “Honey, I see Lila buttoning her coat all by herself”. “Wow, I see Jason sharing his toys.” . • Offer 5 positive statements to every direction or correction given. Give specific, positive feedback. “You practiced your sight words today all by yourself!” • Using school language will help your child to learn school rules and expectations more quickly. “I see that you were being respectful of your environment today.” **November 28th-Parent/Teacher conferences Warm Regards, Ilene ______________________________________________________________________________ December: Dear Families, We begin the month of December with many lessons on cold weather, hibernation and arctic animals. On December 18th and on the 20th our children will enjoy holiday parties with their families at our school!
An author, Bonnie Grubman will be coming to our school on December 19th. She will read her book, How Do You Get A Mouse To Smile? to the children. You may purchase a book through the preschool which Bonnie Grubman would autograph for your child or grandchild. We have hardcover books for $15.00 as well as paperback books for $5.00 in the school office.
This holiday season gives us an opportunity to learn about holiday celebrations around the world beginning with Chanukah. Research shows that children who learn to have a strong appreciation of their own family traditions and culture have an easier time appreciating the traditions and cultures of others. With this foundation, as children progress through our school they will have more social confidence and success in interacting with many different types of people. We wish everyone a very happy and healthy New Year! Warm Regards, Ilene ______________________________________________________________________________ January: In a blink, 2018 is about to fly by and we will turn the calendar to 2019! We look back with gratitude to you for sharing your children with us. We value your partnership. As we look back, we share some highlights and fun facts about 2018. 2018 FUN FACTS and HIGHLIGHTS We used more than 200 baby wipes. We served nearly 1500 lunches and several of gallons of milk. Our future Picasso's used more than 25 pints of paint to create their masterpieces. Our friends went on several walks around the Jericho Jewish Center. We posted more than 1,000 photos on Jerichostem.com Each teacher estimates they have read more than 100 books. We added new events for 2018/19 such as our trips to Shoprite, Old Westbury Gardens and the Bellmore Playhouse. We are having a real planetarium come to our school in the spring. Officer Merkel will come again to teach us about train safety and Otto the Auto will be here in January. For 2019....we look ahead to a wonderful year filled with even more laughter, fun, and learning. JANUARY CLASSROOM EVENTS January kicks off with celebrations around beloved children classics such as Winnie the Pooh. We also have Mozart's birthday in January, so we'll introduce some of his music to circle time—and of course, rest time! From our STEM family to yours, our very best wishes for a Happy New Year! Warm Regards, Ilene ______________________________________________________________________________ February: Even though February is the shortest month of the year we have much going on! It is the international month of friendship which we will honor with discussions, stories, and encouragement on how to show love to friends. It is national children’s dental health month, so we will begin introducing our students to health and nutrition which will play a greater role in the upcoming months. Our school will have a visit from a dentist this month that will perform a puppet show about dental health for our children. Our children are very excited to complete STEM challenges relating to light, darkness and shadows. We also have activities planned using magnets and everyday tools. We will end the month learning about rockets, stars and planets. We hope the children will gain experience and confidence by asking questions and searching for answers. They have been learning to trust themselves, and their decision making abilities. Their curiosity has been met with enthusiasm. We are thrilled to have a special event this month; a planetarium is coming to our school! We are looking forward to our new Learning Adventure Enrichment clubs being offered here at Jericho STEM Academy. We now offer a Chess Club for the first time! Summer is quickly approaching and next month we will fill you in on some of the special activities we are planning. We are thrilled to be able to have unique educational programming such as Cosmic IQ at our school. This was the first time going to a planetarium for many of our students. Warm Regards, Ilene ____________________________________________________________________________ March With the days getting longer and springtime just around the corner we leap into March with a renewed sense of excitement! We’d like to welcome Miss Fulyane and Miss Leah, our new toddler assistant teachers. Please introduce yourself and help them feel at home here. One of the themes this month is Dr. Seuss. Not only are Dr. Seuss book’s loved by children all over the world but they help to introduce the fundamentals of reading. With Dr. Seuss’s simple word repetition and rhyming words a child can easily begin to hear it, learn it, and read it. Being able to identify rhyming words is a prerequisite for reading so during this month we will be focusing on teaching the children to think up simple words that rhyme together. We will all celebrate his birthday on March 2nd. Some other themes for March will be Wind and air, the 5 senses, Passover, spring and flowers. Our children will do several STEAM challenges. Before everyone begins preparing for summer plans we would like to invite our parents to sit down and discuss this school year with your child’s teacher. Conferences will be held on March 28th. Look for information regarding conferences in your child’s folder. We are now accepting registration for our Step Into STEM Camp. Please see Ilene or Mindy in the preschool office for information. You can sign up for 7 weeks or for one week at a time. Warm Regards, Ilene _______________________________________________________________________________ APRIL We seem to finally be enjoying some warmer weather. “April Showers bring May Flowers!” We have spent so much time indoors and will be excited to spend time outside. Our children strengthen growing muscles when they are climbing, running, playing ball and jumping. This month we will also be taking time to discuss all the changes around us. In the month of April children will be learning about flowers growing, Life Cycles, Rain Forests, and recycling. Earth day is April 22. You can take your child out and show them how to fly a kite, ride a bicycle, or spend an afternoon watching cloud shapes and blowing bubbles. Keep in mind, your child is always learning. We thank you for your continued support of our many ongoing projects. We are now requesting used ink cartridges that our school can use towards the purchase of new ones. By recycling we teach our children to take care of the earth. By setting this example we hope our children will continue to have a great place to grow up. Towers of Learning Block building is one of the children’s favorite activities and I will tell you why we encourage our preschoolers to spend time at the block center each day. We know that giving them the time to build each day with blocks is such an important part of their development. Once you know how many different areas of learning are being developed through the simple act of building with blocks you will never look at blocks the same way. Scholastic even goes as far as to call blocks "Towers of Learning" and explains that, "The benefits of block building are deep and broad. Children increase their math, science, and general reasoning abilities when building with blocks." We have been getting wonderful feedback regarding Brightwheels. I hope everyone finds it easier to see your invoices, pay your bills,or to communicate with me or a teacher. I know you must be enjoying the photos and information you receive in real time all day, especially our toddler parents!, Warm Regards, Ilene _______________________________________________________________________________ MAY We hope you find our preschool newsletters valuable and informative. The Month of April was an exciting Month filled with many fun activities. Many engaging and exciting activities will take place in May. Our children will experience seeing caterpillars turn into butterflies as we learn about life cycles. Our Science Fair will be in May. We will also cover the following themes: Life cycles, the globe (culminating with an International feast and craft), famous artists and an art show. Please bring your preschooler to school in comfortable clothing. We may get messy from time to time. Graduation is just around the corner. Our graduating preschoolers will begin with the preparations for their Graduation which is on June 13th . Our staff is dedicated to your children, showing patience and love in their work. Please take the time thank them for all they do. May 6-10 is teacher appreciation week. We will teach our students the skills from the Pyramid Social Competence Model. As a recap, the Pyramid Model focuses on teaching children how to bring together a host of skills – managing daily schedules, routines, and transitions, learning to follow school rules, following multi-step directions and problem solving a variety of situations, learning about emotions of self and others, and learning how to build friendship skills. We encourage you to continue to teach these skills over the summer, as they are building blocks to future success. When teaching your children, remember the quote - “Show me & I forget. Teach me & I remember. Involve me & I learn” Parents once again we would like to thank you on behalf of our entire staff for your ongoing support. _______________________________________________________________________________ JUNE
I can’t believe how fast the school year has flown by. I am amazed at how the time has passed by this school year. This is my end of the year salute. I began this journey June 30, 2016 as director of our school. Prior to this I have always worked in year-round, full day programs run by the director and staff and governed by a board of directors. When working in those environments, I wanted to be more involved in our day to day experiences. I wanted everyone to have a better understanding of the what(s), why(s) and how(s) of preschool life. I knew that what I was longing for was being a director of a school. This year, as in any preschool year, has had its challenges and rewards. I have learned a great deal and know that there is much more learning to come. Our school has grown to 70 children and enrollment for next year is growing rapidly. Our Learning Adventures Enrichment Programs offer invaluable instruction that build upon the children’s cognitive and gross motor skills. Our success would not have been possible without my “DREAM TEAM.” The teachers here at our preschool are honestly the hardest working, most devoted and professionally minded group of teachers. I am proud to work with each and every one of them. I want to give a special thank you to Mindy who has always been by my side. She has been the best assistant director and I couldn’t have been as successful this year without her. I would also like to thank Allysa, who helps run our office and lunch program. Some highlights to share: **Our second home care will open at 7AM beginning August 30th. **If you purchase 10 hours of second home care you will get 2 hours for free. **We will have a sensory area for those students who need a short break. **Piano Lessons will return to our school. ** We have added Fencing lessons to our after school Learning Adventures Enrichment program. **We will implement a new literacy curriculum for our 3’s and pre-K students. There isn’t a child who hasn’t impacted my life and touched my heart! Warm Regards, Ilene