On Nov. 29, Tufts President Anthony Monaco took a break from on-campus meetings to read a picture book, learn about the alphabet and sing “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes,” in an afternoon he called “the best hour he spent all week.” As a special guest during a Jumpstart session at The Open Center for Children in Somerville, President Monaco observed first-hand the passionate, hands-on work that a group of ambitious Tufts students take part in.
Jumpstart at Tufts is hosted by the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service, and the program recruits and trains Tufts students to lead early childhood education programs at local preschools. As the website explains, Tufts students are trained to help young students with their “language, literacy, social and initiative skills,” while also receiving comprehensive training in child development and educational practices. On a national level, Jumpstart has succeeded in placing volunteers in preschools in low-income neighborhoods, and the organization has trained more than 20,000 volunteers since 1993.
President Monaco thoroughly enjoyed his time in the classroom, participating in some of the educational activities and observing the bright, engaging and friendly Tufts students as they commanded the classroom with poise. Check out some photos from the afternoon below: