Mooncrest Neighborhood Programs (MNP) in Moon Township, Pennsylvania, teamed up with community partners to bring an exciting array of summer programs to the children of the neighborhood. The Tull Family Theater brought their Cinema Makers Sessions (CiMS) to the Mooncrest to expose children to STEM careers in cinema and gave them an opportunity to work on a documentary film being made in Pittsburgh. Dana Schulz, educational outreach coordinator for Pittsburgh Technical College(PTC) brought hands-on STEM projects, including having the children make pizza boxes into solar ovens that they used to make smores. For Motivational Mondays, a local motivational speaker hosted leadership and goal-setting workshops; Tuesdays were hosted by Open Field’s soccer-based mentoring program; and Wednesdays were full of music with Felician Sister Judith Marie Blizzard and volunteer Mark Lang.
In addition to all this, children learned about sustainable gardening and health eating at the Mooncrest community garden; participated in a summer reading program to earn prizes; made jewelry with a local artisan; visited with the mini-horses from Orchardview Stables; and learned about sportsmanship with the help of two faculty members of nearby Felician-sponsored Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School, Michael McDonald and Jeff Hulbert.
In the end, there was no shortage of creative activities to keep children occupied, engaged and active this summer.