Why Educazione Italiana Greater Boston (EditGB)?

 

I started the Boston Bambino Club four years ago as a playgroup to help me teach Italian to my son and to develop ties to other Italians in the area. Our focus has changed over time as we have found that it is next to impossible to raise bilingual children in America without a community and quality language instruction. We have witnessed that just speaking with parents and spending the summer in Italy is not enough. Children need to talk with their peers and get quality language instruction (prek-12) on a regular basis before they will view bilingualism as a positive thing in their lives. Every week I am contacted by desperate parents whose children switch completely to English. Personally, I know only few children over the age of five who can truly speak Italian.

After speaking with bilingual experts, it became clear to us that the root cause of our problem is that, in order to become truly bilingual, children need to be immersed in the second language across a wide variety of domains (e.g., school subjects, social events, news, sports). Without this broad and deep exposure, the second language never becomes a fully developed tool, and thus the children just view it as a non-functional tool and refuse to use it.

In order to help our families overcome these issues, Educazione Italiana Greater Boston (EditGB), a group of parents, experts and educators with significant experience in bilingual education and in the Reggio approach, is working together to create a solid curriculum (PreK-12), that can help bilingual children grow their knowledge of the Italian language and culture.

Thank to these efforts, in 2013 we launched the EditGB programs. Below are the details of the classes we are running this year.

(1) Campo Estivo L'Italiano in Azione! (2017 registration open)
In 2013 we presented an innovative summer camp in Cambridge, where children (ages 3-8) with basic knowledge of Italian were able to participate in yoga, theatre and storytelling games in italian! Every day the kids had the opportunity to enter and play in a fairy-tale. The objectives of the program, which was run by the head teacher of a prestigious Italian school in America (PreK-8) and with significant experience in bilingual instruction, were to teach bilingual children Italian through fun games and experimentation, in accordance with the Reggio-Emilia approach and to assess the level of interest in an Italian school PreK-12 in the Boston area. The camp turned out to be fun and beneficial to all the children and teachers who participated and has now run for four years, with part-time and full-time options. Places are limited. We are currently adding interested families to our waiting list here. We will contact you to let you know if we have spaces available on the program by June 25th 2017.

(2) Il DopoScuola EditGB (2016-2017 registration open)
The EditGB AfterSchool Program is an Italian education program for bilingual children (ages 5-9). We divide the children into two groups (3-5 and 5-9).

The teacher will engage the 3-5 year old group in the Italian language and culture through art, music, visual storytelling, science, yoga and theatre.

The classes for the 5-8 year old group will focus on
the Italian elementary school curriculum 1st-2nd grade and on reading and writing activities, in collaboration with the Scuola Montessori in Torino. Places on these programs are limited. Families with one Italian mother-tongue parent are given enrollment priority. To be added to our waiting list, please send your details here.

(3) Classi di Musica in Italiano! (2016-2017 registration open)
The primary objective of these classes, targeted at the 6-9 year old age group, is to train the children not only on the music and on the sounds of the Italian language but also to help them to spontaneously convert their acquired knowledge in the music domain (singing/playing a specific instrument) into Italian. These classes will give children the opportunity to write and produce a piece of music in Italian together with a group of young talented artists. To enroll your child in these classes, please send your details here.

For more information on these programs, you can contact Enrica Dente at bostonbambinoclub@gmail.com