Head Start: Port Chester

The Rye Arts Center provides 26 weeks of art and music instruction annually to hundreds of Port Chester pre-school children who qualify based on need. This program, established in 1981, helps develop school readiness skills so that young participants can more readily transition to a public school setting. Through participation in arts activities children enhance their cognitive and language development, learn to express themselves creatively, and build their confidence. From October through May, the children (3 – 5 years old) participate in weekly classes that include instruction in painting, ceramics, mixed media, dance, music, singing, and storytelling. Since many of the children are beginning English language learners, only speaking Spanish, their engagement with this program helps them learn English through song lyrics and English instruction. Scholarships are provided to a selection of Head Start students to attend our summer Creative Arts Program, further enhancing the arts education enrichment experience for those children showing an affinity for the arts.