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Glen Cove special-needs students get a taste of NYC

Fourth-graders Samy, left, and Diego give tours of

Fourth-graders Samy, left, and Diego give tours of famous New York buildings at the School for Language and Communication Development in Glen Cove. On Friday, students ranging from preschool to sixth grade decorated their classrooms to emulate the look and feel of New York City as a learning exercise in social studies and communication skills. (Aug. 3, 2012) Credit: Michael Cusanelli

Normally, Long Islanders looking to tour the Big Apple would have to drive into Manhattan to see all of New York City’s famous landmarks. But on Friday, the faculty and staff of the School for Language and Communication Development brought the big city directly to their students.

The busy streets of New York City were transported to the special-needs school in Glen Cove as students ranging from preschool to 6th grade were able to experience the sights, sounds and tastes of New York City.

“They’re just thrilled with it,” said Principal Karen Katzman. “It increases the creativity of our students. It adds a spark to their learning.”

With a little bit of imagination and a lot of creativity, students faithfully re-created famous New York landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty, Central Park and Yankee Stadium in their classrooms.

“It's an opportunity for the children to interact and understand how a community runs,” said teacher Linda Quinn, 50. “They’re able to use their skills that they learned and acquired throughout the whole year ... in order to put the town together.”

Dressed in white “I Love NY” T-shirts, students were able to learn arts and crafts related to the history of New York City in order to reinforce their knowledge of social studies. The program also allowed students to practice their socialization skills with their classmates.

Faculty and students worked for several weeks to re-create street signs, posters and tour buses for the children to enjoy as they explored the streets of New York in their school’s classrooms and hallways.

Models of buildings such as the Museum of Natural History and the Empire State Building dotted the hallways, alongside subway signs, pretzel stands and cardboard tour buses.

“I think they like to see it all come to life,” said teacher Christine Amedo, 25. “I think that SLCD is a place that they love so much that [seeing New York] within these walls is the coolest part for them.”

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