Thursday, February 23, 2017

Student of the Week 2-21-2017

We hope everyone had a long and relaxing weekend!  Presenting our student of the week: Ethan from Ms. Alyce's classroom, and Nevaeh, from Ms. Anna's classroom!

My name is: Ethan
I am: 8 years old
My favorite color is: Red  
I was born in: May! 
I live in: Allentown
My favorite number is: The square root of 10!
My favorite animal is: A cat   
My favorite food is: pizza
I like to: Play
When I grow up I want to be: A hero!


My name is: Nevaeh
I am: 11 years old
My favorite color is: Pink!! 
I was born in: January
I live in: Pittsburgh
My favorite number is: 21 
My favorite animal is: Puma
My favorite food is: Pizza
I like to: Dance
When I grow up I want to be: A teacher

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Dazzled by D.N.A.- Adventures in S.T.E.A.M.!

Our program adventures in S.T.E.A.M. keep us exploring new scientific discoveries each and every week, blog followers! Our friend and neighbor, Megan Bean, a molecular biologist who specializes in D.N.A. sequences came in to visit us this Tuesday. 

Ms. Bean brought her two lovely children with her to assist with this days lesson, and quickly everyone in the room became excited about what this "molecular biology" was all about. 

Our students were given salt water to gargle in their mouths to collect their D.N.A. This works by the texture of the salt water collecting tissue! After a minute or so of this, students collected their D.N.A. samples in a cup and combined it first with dish soap, then with 70% proof rubbing Alcohol (the closer to 100% the better), and green food dye to contrast the color of the D.N.A. strands! 

Once all ingredients were combined, students waited for something amazing to occur. The most surprising aspect of this particular experiment for our classroom was that D.N.A. is actually visible to the human eye. Once the ingredients took effect, you could see with your naked eye (no microscope needed) the small, delicate white strands floating in the green liquid- a mesmerizing thing to witness.

Our students learned that D.N.A. holds all of our genetic information that makes up who we are, which is incredibly similar to each other with small marked differences. D.N.A. was discovered in 1953 by scientists Watson and Crick, who appropriately named it's twisted structure the "double helix". 

If you were to unwind all your D.N.A. and stretch it out as far as it would go, it would travel to the moon and back many thousands of times! 

See some candid moments from our experiment below:

Thank you for reading, and tune in to see what we discover next! 

Full S.T.E.A.M. ahead, 


Tuesday, February 21, 2017

February Family Fun Night!

This past Monday we are pleased to announce that we held another successful Family-Fun-Night here at the Allentown Learning and Engagement Center. We take pride in community and just love hosting events outside of our usual curriculum and schedule that can serve to deepen relationships with family and friends. February, the month of love and Black History Month, makes for a wonderful occasion! 

We opened our doors early this time for our monthly celebration. Snacks and refreshments were provided to our friends and honored guests, as well as some great educational activities centered in S.T.E.A.M. from our partners at the YMCA. We also made some early Valentines-Day crafts to show our appreciation for each other. Check out some of our programming below! 

Of course, pictures can only do an event like our famous Family-Fun-Nights so much justice, so we hope you will join us in Allentown for our next event! Follow @BrashearKids on twitter for more updates! 

Thank you for reading, dear friends! 


Thursday, February 16, 2017

Student of the Week 2-13-2017

Introducing our students of the week... David and Azare!  We appreciate everything they bring to our program!

My name is: David
I am: 8 Years Old
My favorite color is: Blue!
I was born on: 2008
I live in: Allentown!
My favorite number is: 12 
My favorite animal is: A Lion
My favorite food is: Burgers
I like to: Read books! 
When I grow up I want to be: an Author and Soccer Player  


My name is: Azare
I am: 11 Years Old
My favorite color is: Red
I was born on: 2005
I live in: Pittsburgh!
My favorite number is: I'm unsure! 
My favorite animal is: All!
My favorite food is: Chicken!
I like: Drawing in my notebook.
When I grow up I want to be: Me!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Let's Get Creative: Black History Month Mural

Hello, blog enthusiasts. This February we are celebrating Black History all month, and implementing this into our civic engagement lessons! This week we decided to create a mural featuring pertinent historical and contemporary figures who have made a difference through culture, politics, science and more! 

Some of these figures include:

Booker T. Washington


Dr. Mae Jemison

Shirley Chisholm

Sister Rosetta Tharpe 

Langston Hughes

Nelson Mandela

Our boys engaged in this particular lesson read biographies about these varied innovators, cultural leaders, and scientists before choosing one to portray in our mural. Then we got to painting!

Some students felt less confident about their painting and drawing skills, and needed extra instruction before fully integrating themselves into the project. However, all the students put their own touch on this colorful endeavor and by the end we were very pleased with the results! We especially enjoyed how some students took their own approach, like one's abstract rendering of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, and another's transformation of Shirley Chisholm into a giant robot.

We hope you've enjoyed this week's civic lesson, and stay tuned! 

Happy learning,


Monday, February 13, 2017

Sensational STEAM Stations with YMCA!

Last week, our lesson with the Hilltop YMCA consisted of 3 stations: LED games, Snap circuit exploration, and a motor activity!  Brashear Kids loved the structure of different stations to let their creativity soar.

Clockwise from left: Keliyah, Nevaeh, ElayJaih, & Jerzie explore the snap circuit.  We loved seeing them stray from the instruction manual to build their own diagrams!

 Edwin shows off his "hypnotizer"- a motor with his own artistic design attached!  Brashear Kids love coloring and drawing.

From left: Zechariah and Azare play operation- gingerbread style; Shane plays LED tic-tac-toe with one of our wonderful tutors!  The students were excited to incorporate LED lights into their games.

Stay tuned for more adventures in STEAM with the Hilltop YMCA!

Full STEAM ahead,

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Student of the Week 2-6-2017

Introducing our students of the week... Erin and Jeffrey!  We appreciate everything they bring to our program!

My name is: Erin
I am: 8 years old
My favorite color is: blue
I was born on: April 19th
I live in: Allentown
My favorite number is: 1,000
My favorite animal is: lion
My favorite food is: wings
I like: science 
When I grow up I want to be: a boss


My name is: Jeffrey
I am: 10 years old
My favorite color is: green
I was born : 2006
I live in: Pittsburgh
My favorite number is: 1
My favorite animal is: a dog
My favorite food is: pizza
I like to: be creative, draw, and complete school work
When I grow up I want to be: a soldier who works in technology!


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