The community of Ward 8 in Washington DC is experiencing a food desert which limits the quality of adequate nutrition students and families have access to in their daily diet. Thus, we have made it our mission to provide our students with highly nutritious foods while serving their needs inside the school. Students receive two meals a day and a flavorful and healthy snack. Our students receive protein or grain, fruit or vegetables, and milk for breakfast. For lunch, they receive protein, fruit, vegetables, and milk. For snack, they receive fruit or vegetable and milk or water.
Virtual and In-person Field Trips
Buddy Bison National Trust Park these trips are under Buddy Bison National Trust Park;
■ "Amazing Animals" of Zion National Park
■ Clearwater Nature Center
■ "Where the Wild Things Live" Grand Canyon National Park
The Virtual Field Trips enhance students' knowledge of science, technology, mathematics, language arts, and other developmental areas. It provides the students with an experience of being in a place where they might not physically visit. Our scholars can engage with National Park Rangers, who teach them the importance of taking care of the environment and how the environment can help the population.
2. Inspired Child- Dancing with Books
Inspired Child brings multi-week arts-based classroom residencies to our school. Teaching artists integrate music, movement, and visual arts to support classroom learning standards and promote cognitive and social-emotional development.
Summer Enrichment Program
The Summer Enrichment Program helps students (ages six to twelve) to further their education during the summer by creating an interactive curriculum that includes virtual and in-person field trips, lessons that enforce what they have learned in the most recent school year, and an early jumpstart on studies they will learn next year. This program also offers our scholars an opportunity to connect with older individuals who serve as mentors to provide them with the proper guidance to continue succeeding. During the summer, the goal is to help students in their personal, social, and academic development to be most successful.
One of the essential school elements is the Foster Grandparent program. Under this program, seniors work at the center a few days a week. Studies have shown the mutual benefits to kids and seniors from regular interaction. The foster grandparent goes a step further by providing seniors with supplemental income that helps with food, medicine, and mental and physical health benefits of being in the presence of children. The children and their parents benefit from the seniors' nurturing and wisdom dedicated to supporting them.
Our robust curriculum implements educational activities and lessons focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). These activities widen the analytical process for each student and expose them to new and exciting ideas and concepts. STEM is a significant part of the development of our young scholars. STEM gets their cognitive portion of the brain working with problem-solving, critical thinking, and classification skills. It uses everyday experiences to relate to projects.
Virtual Learning Institute
The mission of the Virtual Learning Institute is to engage students and their families by providing high-quality learning and developmental activities through multimedia technology. The Virtual classroom will allow us to leverage stakeholders from outside the organization to expose our community at Sunshine Early Learning Center and Southeast Children’s Fund to a plethora of experiences ranging from foreign languages, cultural awareness, storytelling, STEM, history, and self-awareness.
Throughout the school year, Sunshine Academy's Pre-K program partners with community leaders and stakeholders to conduct the monthly reader program for the students. With the help of Mr. Aaron Holmes, we connect many great leaders to meet the children. We often remind our children that they are the future leaders of tomorrow, and we use the monthly readers' program as a tool to develop our children.
Community Walks are a time for students to get familiar with the outside environment and learn hands-on about nature and the surroundings in their community. Some of the benefits of Community Walks for our students are reviewing walk safety procedures, recognizing and identifying local landmarks, identifying street signs, identifying modes of transportation, recognizing season change, identifying building structures, and identifying community workers.
Sunshine Early Learning Center Pre-K Program creates a garden every year to teach the students the process of planting and growing foods. This process usually takes place during the spring. Some of the grown foods are peaches, cantaloupes, tomatoes, carrots, and much more. The Sunshine Garden also directly connects with the STEM curriculum as the weather affects the growth of the various plants.