The Story Of Our New Sleeping Mats

by Beth Brennan, Lower School Head and Tricia Eickelberg, Director of Early Childhood

The Elisabeth Morrow School is a community of students, administrators, staff, parents, students and alumni, all of whom value an excellent education as fundamental in the lives of children and the adults they will become. The “4 C’s” Cooperation, Consideration, Compassion and Courtesy form the foundation of the school’s character education. This year an amazing example of how we, as a community, brought these values to life is worth sharing with all of you.

In the fall of 2011, I shared an idea with EMS parent Karen Toback, who at the time was the Little School PA representative for the year. We scheduled a time to chat and she eagerly came to my office ready to help. I told her a story about how a parent, some twenty years ago, volunteered to create resting mats for the youngest students here at EMS. They were still in use but they were all very worn. The children, however, still loved resting on them. She took one look at the old (but loved) sample and committed to help the children in Chilton House acquire new mats.  Thus, a yearlong joint partnership between “home” and “school” began.

A completion deadline for this fall had Mrs. Toback quickly out shopping for prints of fabrics that would work for both girls and boys. After sharing samples, we all agreed upon a bright and interesting print. Next, a flyer inviting all interested quilters to help with this project was sent out to our community. The call was answered and group met regularly throughout the spring. They cut and packaged fabrics and borders to distribute to all of the volunteer quilters. Much like an old fashioned quilting bee, they worked during the summer to complete all 100 mats for all six classrooms in Chilton House.

Our caring community is our strength; deeds such as this, and the people who work steadfastly to bring them to fruition, are what brings vitality and integrity to our school’s mission. To acknowledge this gift, the children in Chilton House designed their own quilt patches, which were hung together in our lobby as a symbolic way to pass along our thanks to all of our quilting volunteers. As well, at a recent sing-a-long, the children sang a thank you song (below). We hope the joining of children’s voices and words of thanks are inspirational for all of you to hear and enjoy.

Thank you… Karen Toback (head seamstress),  Georgia Silverman (Ella and Kara’s Grandmother),  Laura Cohen, Donna LoBue, Kim Kachakian, J. Grace Kim, Lily Reidel, Adela Skinner, Maria Staphos, Lily Lou, Tricia Eickelberg, Jen Cordover Family.

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