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Make a Difference – Stop Bullying

We would like to feature this great anti bullying resource today. This website provides lots of useful information on bullying, including facts, educational videos and games, as well as strategies and  things you can do to keep yourself and the kids you know safe from bullying. here are some of the topics covered:

  • Treat Everyone with Respect
  • What to Do If You’re Bullied
  • Protect Yourself from Cyberbullying
  • Stand Up for Others
  • Get Involved

http://www.stopbullying.gov/kids/index.html

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What Are the Benefits of Art Programs for Kids?

Overview

When budget cuts are needed at educational institutions, art programs are often among the first to go. While art programs are typically not considered part of the core curriculum at most elementary, secondary and post-secondary schools, they do offer students who participate in them several advantages. A program in art education can provide students of all ages with a solid foundation for their educational, emotional, social and creative development.

Improved Learning Skills

Programs in art education can potentially help students to excel in other academic areas, particularly in reading and mathematics. According to Americans for the Arts, art programs can be particularly beneficial in helping children of preschool age to develop their cognitive, motor and language skills. Art programs can help to improve memory and concentration skills, develop decision-making and critical thinking skills, enhance communication and listening skills, help children to establish spatial-temporal relationships between objects and encourage focus and discipline. Citing a 2006 study by the Guggenheim Museum, the New York Times suggests that a foundation in the arts can also help to improve literacy skills, particularly among children who are just beginning to read.

Enhanced Social Skills

An education in art can also help to improve social skills and self-esteem. Children who participate in art education programs learn to work as part of a team and understand different points of view, according to Americans for the Arts. They are also able to develop an understanding and appreciation for different cultures, which can translate to an increased sense of tolerance and social acceptance. Art programs also help children to develop a greater sense of craftsmanship and pride in their finished work. As children are encouraged to follow their vision and do their best, they can develop a greater sense of confidence and self-esteem. This increased confidence can lead to greater social participation in school. According to Abrakadoodle, a national children’s art program, children who participate in the arts are four times more likely to serve as a class officer or participate in a math or science fair.

Increased Creativity

Programs in the arts encourage children to be creative and use their imagination as much as possible. This increased emphasis on creativity can help to foster new ways of thinking about the world in general. According to The Boston Globe, art programs are critical in helping students to expand their understanding of their place in relationship to the rest of the world. Students who participate in art programs are encouraged to use their creative minds to enhance their observational skills and “think outside the box” in terms of problem-solving. Art programs encourage innovation and nonlinear thinking, skills that can be used not only in academic settings but in the professional world as well.

Source: www.livestrong.com

 | By Rebecca Lake

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Introducing Good Sport

We are thrilled to announce that our brand new sports program has been successfully launched in the Greater Toronto Area. Good Sport has been in our thoughts for while as we saw the importance of offering a program that would appeal to boys and girls and provide children with opportunities to improve their sporting skills and gain confidence in a supportive and fun environment. We got more serious about the idea of creating the program once a large childcare organization approached us looking for a similar curriculum. The project was spearheaded by Alyxandra Martin who was able to create a fantastic “Good Sport” curriculum  for School Age children. Alyxandra’s creation was brought to life last month and the classes are currently running in close to forty locations across the GTA.

Our Good Sport program focuses on sporting skills and team building exercises that will provide social
and physical foundations to play a variety of sports and instill an intrinsic motivation to be physically active. Children develop perceptual and reflex abilities, as well as build strength and coordination while having a great time!

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UGOT Active Kids @ the Corsage Project and Boutique Ball

The Corsage Project, working in partnership with the Children’s Aid Foundation, is a non-profit program in Toronto dedicated to giving the authentic prom experience to young women and men who would not otherwise have the opportunity to celebrate with their peers due to the high cost of formal wear. Through their scholarship program, the Corsage Project also helps local high school graduates achieve their post-secondary goals.
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This year two of UGOT Active Kids team members (Veronica Zielinska and Shirlee Hiebert) volunteered with the Corsage Project and supported this wonderful cause.

Veronica Zielinska sharing her experience:

“This has been my second year volunteering with The Corsage Project. I invited Shirlee to join me this year and she was thrilled to be a part of this event. We had an amazing time, helping a girl who would have otherwise not have had the financial means or opportunity to pick a prom dress for that special day, and feel like a princess at The Boutique Ball. It’s a place and time where your background, age, colour, or religion don’t matter as the occasion connects you as two people over something fun and exciting. This was an amazing opportunity to share my own prom experiences with a young girl getting ready for her special day.”

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http://corsageproject.ca/our-story/

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