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Elementary Schoolers Visit Ellis Island

Our Lower Elementary schoolers traveled to Ellis Island to learn about the rich history of the island and the many once passed through it to call America their home. The 3rd grade class toured on Tuesday, May 24, and the 2nd grade class toured on Thursday, May 26.

Students explored the historic place where over 12 million immigrants entered our nation. The classes toured the Great Hall, where the medical inspection was the first examination that an immigrant had to pass. The doctors and medical inspectors would look for signs of illness or contagious diseases.

The majority of immigrants passed through the medical inspection the same day. On the third floor, students saw the dormitory where some people were held if they could not pass the initial examination.

"A favorite exhibit in the museum was the ‘Treasures from Home’ exhibit,” said teacher Adinah Lagud. "Children were able to see some of the common items brought into Ellis Island from other countries. Since most emigrated from Europe, items included Bibles, prayer books, family documents, handmade linens, crockery, and other possessions representing centuries-old cultures and traditions. The carefully chosen items that families brought gave insight into how immigrants prepared for life in an unknown land, what they expected to find here, and their hopes for the future."

Regular field trips are an important part of our curriculum and extend learning beyond the classroom walls. Students visit the Hudson River in our backyard as a science lab, and our older students experience overnight camps. It's a short walk to Liberty State Park where students go birding or learn about the park's ecosystem and other park wildlife.

These activities are woven into our Lower Elementary program and offer students a real understanding of the world around them. This educational experience inspires teamwork, leadership, and self-confidence.

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