It’s all about the children with free event at museum – Miami Herald

The Early Learning Coalition of Miami-Dade/Monroe kicks off Children’s Week with a free event at Miami Children’s Museum. The coalition invites low-income South Florida families to the museum on Friday, March 17, for a day of education and bonding.

“This is a great opportunity for kids and there are lot of interactive activities for the whole family,” ELC President and CEO Evelio Torres said.

This event encourages the involvement of parents in their children’s everyday learning experiences. The coalition also maintains a partnership with child care agencies and encourages the attendance of kids who are part of the foster care system.

During a special presentation, Miami-Dade County Deputy Mayor Russell Benford will proclaim March 17 the county’s official Children’s Day. Other activities include a city of Miami Fire Truck safety demonstration, live performances, book giveaways and story time by costumed characters.

“Every child leaves with a book,” is one of the missions of Children’s Day.

The coalition also sponsors “Unplug & Connect,” a campaign that invites parents to take a pledge to disconnect from their phones and spend more quality time with their children.

“I took the pledge and now my kids are adults but I still think twice when picking up my phone at the dinner table,” Torres said.

As part of Children’s Week, the Early Learning Coalition also will organize the “Hanging of the Hands” in Tallahassee. This project’s purpose is to raise awareness about the importance of early childhood education.

Torres said that “it’s Florida’s commitment to spend time supporting education from preschool to high school. It all trickles down to prekindergarten.”

For this purpose, “hand art” is collected at child-care centers and schools across the state and then hung in the Capitol Rotunda as a reminder to legislators that there is a need for high-quality early education programs.

Additionally, interactive readings and information sessions will be held during Children’s Week to aid parents in reconnecting with their children or entering/returning to the workforce.

For more information on these and other events, visit childrensweek.org.

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