Newark Public Schools Celebrates 5th Annual “Night at the Museum”

Fun-filled event at the Newark Museum featured educational activities and early childhood resources and programs for children and families

[Newark, NJ – June 14, 2017] Newark Public Schools (NPS) Office of Early Childhood co-hosted the fifth annual “Night at the Museum” at the Newark Museum on Friday, June 9. Over 2,100 people attended the event that featured fun and meaningful educational activities for parents and children to enjoy, along with information about early childhood resources and programs that families can access during the summer months and throughout the school year.

“‘Night at the Museum’ is a wonderful event that brings together families and children to learn more about the exciting educational opportunities available to them, in a fun-filled setting,” said Superintendent Christopher D. Cerf of NPS. “The Office of Early Childhood has done an exceptional job ensuring our youngest learners have access to a wide-range of educational opportunities that will support their growth and learning. Early childhood learning is critical to a student’s lifelong success, and it’s vital that we are investing the time and resources necessary to give our youngest learners the tools they need to succeed.”

Numerous community based organizations participated in the evening event, including the Statewide Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN, Department of Children and Families), the Newark Public Library, the Newark Department of Health and Community Wellness, the D.A.D. Network, Habitat for Humanity, Newark Conservancy, Bricks for Kidz, Program for Parents and the Newark Arts Council. Each organization provided information to Newark families about the array of early childhood resources and programs that are available to them throughout the year.

“We are thrilled to host our fifth annual ‘Night at the Museum’, in partnership with the Newark Museum,” said F. Nana Ofosu-Amaah, Executive Director of NPS Office of Early Childhood. “This event allows us to engage directly with children and families and showcase the wide variety of early childhood educational opportunities that Newark has to offer. The involvement of parents, grandparents and guardians is crucial throughout a child’s educational journey, and events like this empower them to take a more active role in supporting their child’s academic experience.”

The evening’s activities included tours of the Newark Museum and planetarium show screenings. Event participants also received free library cards, raffles, prizes and books, as well as a special meet and greet with Curious George and Clifford the Big Red Dog.

“The Office of Childhood Education is focused on trying to make learning fun and engaging for our youngest learners, and events like ‘Night at the Museum’ provide an opportunity to get children excited about summer learning and attending school in the fall,” Ofosu-Amaah added.

“Night at the Museum” is also an opportunity to introduce children and families to Newark’s cultural institutions. According to a survey conducted by the Office of Childhood Education, nearly sixty percent of respondents said they rarely visit local libraries or museums.

“It’s so much fun to bring families together to learn about the rich opportunities in this city. We are pleased that the Newark Museum is a place of lively engagement,” said Sonnet Takahisa, Deputy Director of Engagement and Innovation at the Newark Museum. “On PreSchool Night, the Museum’s arts and science collections, combined with the resources of all our partner presenters, encourage early learners and their adults to explore the world, learn about different cultures and discover their own creativity.”

“Night at the Museum” is sponsored by NPS and the Nicholson Foundation, with additional support from the United Way of Essex and Hudson and WNET.