Cabrini Immigrant Services (CIS), Dobbs Ferry, has been offering a Preschool Literacy Program for toddlers and their parent/caregiver. It has been very rewarding watching the children achieve many of the goals of the program. Dr. Elizabeth Smith teaches the program. One of the stories that the children learned about was El Perro con Sombrero by Derek Taylor Kent. After reading the story, the children made sombreros using paper dishes, paper cups, pompoms, etc. The following lesson, Dr. Smith presented the book Five Little Arepas by Andrea M. Costantine. The moms began to talk about how they made arepas at home. It seemed to be that everyone loves to eat arepas. Arrangements were soon made, and the moms made arepas during the next lesson. They were so proud to share their cooking with everyone. It was wonderful watching everyone work as a team. Some mixed the dough, others shaped it into round pieces while others cooked the arepas.

When everything was ready, the children sat at tables with their sombreros on and ate the very delicious arepas. Of course, all the adults joined in the eating as they shared about the recipe and how they loved being able to share some of their culture. It was true, everyone loved the arepas!

Thank you to the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation Grant for allowing us to have such wonderful experiences.

Lorraine Campanelli, Director, CIS, Dobbs Ferry

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