BY JENNA BAGCAL A Long Island City early development
center will now introduce STEM to
children 3 years old and under.
My Treehouse at 46-07 Vernon
Blvd. is expanding its offerings with
a new STEM program for children aged 8 months
to 3 years in age. Center owner Robert Cilinghir
shared that incorporating these subjects at an
early age creates an open mind, instills a sense
of curiosity and benefits children as learners in
"It allows them to feel confident when learning
these subjects in the future. We mostly follow the
John Dewey philosophy, such as the belief that human
beings learn through a 'hands-on' approach. However,
we incorporate STEM," Cilinghir said.
12 JUNE 2019 I LIC COURIER I www.qns.com
Xio Rosario, an instructor at the learning center,
said that they try to incorporate STEM-related subjects
every day of the week. Since the students are so young,
the activities range from reading stories about topics
like car mechanisms and the ABC's of space to going
over flashcards about planets.
Instructors often take the children on nature walks
to Gantry Plaza State Park where the students learn
about Earth Science through seeing rocks, the water
and living creatures. Rosario said that they teach the
children how to respond to these lessons by encourag-ing
finger pointing and incorporating sign language
for children who may be nonverbal.
"With the repetitive way of teaching, it eventually
sticks," said Rosario.
Cilinghir opened My Treehouse in June 2016 in an
effort to help children "make sense of the world around
them through playing." According to Cilinghir, the new
STEM program allows the children to develop social
and cognitive skills while allowing them to mature
emotionally and gain self confidence.
"They are motivated to engage in new experiences
and environments. This is all through play which
we believe is essential for children's growth. We
incorporate these things on our walks to Gantry
Park," he said.
There are currently three classrooms at My Tree-house
that incorporate STEM lessons for the children,
which will be offered year round.
"The staff is loving, consistent and supportive and
we've formed great relationships with students and
their parents," said Rosario. "We've made a lovely
community at My Treehouse."
For more information on My Treehouse and its
programs, visit mytreehouselic.com or find them on
Intro to STEM
My Treehouse LIC early development center starts
hands-on STEM lessons for toddlers