Since the beginning of January, Orangethorpe Learning Center has offered art classes to its students. The classes take place every Thursday afternoon and are open to any students who attend OLC regularly and who are up-to-date in doing their homework. Last week we saw our students studying the works of Pablo Picasso and producing their own art works in the style of great modern painters like Picasso.
In times when the schools find it difficult to offer their students regular programs of art instruction, we believe it is very important to encourage the creativity and self-expression of our OLC students.
Our instructor is Andrea Rose, who teaches art at a number of public and private schools. If you visit the classes, you'll notice that our children are never as attentive and well-behaved as they are while learning the different techniques and media which Andrea teaches. Andrea is very pleased with the progress that her students are making. She believes that art teaches them greater patience and focus, which will lead to success in all their other academic endeavors.
Usually about 15 children are in attendance. During February, some of our children's art work has been on display in the Fellowship Hall at the Methodist Church.
We remind all our students and their families that Orangethorpe Learning Center hours are:
2:45-4:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday
We often see unsupervised children who arrive as much as an hour before we open and stay on church property after we close. OLC employees and volunteers are only available during the hours we are open and cannot be responsible for children who arrive too early or who do not go home when we close.
We urge all parents to send their children to OLC at the appropriate time (no earlier than 2:30 p.m.!) and to pick them up promptly when we close.
Eight years ago this month, Orangethorpe Learning Center opened its doors to the children of our neighborhood who needed homework help. On that first cold, rainy day, only two children came in. It wasn't long before the word got out and we've never lacked for students.
The week of our eighth anniversary was also cold and rainy but on the day of our party, the sun came out and so did the children! More than fifty OLC students and their families were here to celebrate. We had an exhibition of Andrea's students' art work plus lots of tasty food which our children's parents brought. And, as we did a year ago, we invited Martín Espino to bring his collection of pre-Hispanic instruments to our party. Our children had a wonderful time learning about the musical and cultural heritage of the Americas. Even our shyest children were eagerly playing the different instruments.
Just a few days ago, three of our OLC students were in a serious accident in their parents' car. Danielle and Stephanie both had their seat belts buckled and came through without any problems. Their sister Erika wasn't wearing her belt and had some bad cuts on her face. She went to the hospital to have stitches.Ask Erika if she wears her seat belt now when she goes for a drive! Do you use your seat belt?
It wouldn't be possible for us to continue serving the community without the help of many friends. First of all, we thank our students' families for entrusting us with their children, for their hard work in our fundraisers, and for helping to keep OLC running smoothly.
We're grateful for the generosity of the following people who have donated funds or equipment to Orangethorpe Learning Center:
We're also grateful to the following businesses in our neighborhood which have supported OLC:
Ever since Orangethorpe Learning Center opened last fall, we've had volunteers helping our children who are a part of the Service Learning Program at Fullerton College. Each of these young people has taken a genuine interest in our little ones and served with love and enthusiasm. Thank you, Karen Rose and Cynthia Soto, for sending us these tutors. We hope we will see more such volunteers during this Spring semester.
We've also enjoyed having two students from California State University Fullerton helping our children with their homework -- Tuan Ly and Melissa Lovett. Tuan is doing a great job of helping our 5th and 6th graders with some of their really tough homework. He hopes to go to medical school after graduating from CSUF. Melissa is the granddaughter of Lois Forbes, who was a volunteer during OLC's first two years. Melissa helped us nearly every day during her semester break. We hope we'll see her again when her schedule permits.
Every few days, a new student arrives at Orangethorpe Learning Center's door, often accompanied by his or her mom or dad. When we ask how they found out about OLC, usually they tell us that a teacher or counsellor at their school recommended that the student come to us for some extra help with homework.
We are grateful to the principals of our local schools,
Our two students who went to Guatemala for Christmas have come home to Fullerton. They were both very excited about visiting their parents homeland and showed us dozens of photos which their family took. Bianca tells us that they visited the famous Mayan city of Tikal, where they explored the ruins of ancient pyramids and temples. We hope to publish some of their photos soon on the OLC web site.
Fun Times is published in English and Spanish for the information of our families and friends.
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