Jericho STEM Academy students take a close look at pumpkins and gourds grown at the school. (Photo courtesy the Jericho STEM Academy)

Learning Beyond A-B-Cs And 1-2-3s

The Jericho STEM Academy, located at 430 N Broadway in Jericho, goes above and beyond in teaching preschool students and younger science, technology, engineering and math.
The students learn STEM through lessons such as buoyancy, said Gail Linden, the Jericho STEM Academy office manager.
“It’s amazing what they’ve done,” Linden said. “And they’re young.”
There’s always something happening at the Jericho STEM Academy, Linden explained.
“Every holiday is celebrated,” Linden said. “We teach them about all the different religions, all the different holidays.”
Soon, the students will be observing Passover and Easter, as well as the birthdays of Mickey Mouse and Dr. Seuss.
“Every month we have certain days we celebrate,” Linden said. “We had the 100th day of school, when the preschool dressed up [as a senior.] We have after-school enrichment programs. We have taekwondo and chess. A chess master comes in and teaches them. We have dance. During the day, we have a piano teacher who comes in and gives lessons. We have a teacher on staff who does music and library. We have a lot of things going on. We have an indoor gym, an outdoor gym.”
Students learn about science, technology and engineering through approaches such as using a microscope to explore living and non-living things close-up, using robotics materials and blocks to design, test and build their own constructions and conducting science projects. And they learn math through Eureeka Math, a curriculum that promotes rigor, coherence, and focus to help students understand the why behind the numbers.
Even the babies in the infant’s program that was introduced this year can learn through their educators as they lay the foundation on which a lifetime of skills, knowledge, and success can be built.
The program can begin as early as 7 a.m. through beforecare and can end as late as 6 p.m. with aftercare, where there is after-school enrichment.
The director, Ilene Morrin, grew up in Bayside Queens and has a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education from SUNY New Paltz and a Master’s degree in early childhood education from Queens College. She taught preschool at the Mid Island Y JCC for over 13 years.
“[She’s] very hands-on,” Linden said. “She’s here all the time and has been a teacher for many years, and we work with a curriculum. Everybody works with the curriculum; we have meetings, discuss what’s going on.”
According to the Jericho STEM Academy website, she helped introduce a curriculum to Long Island where students can learn STEM subjects through an approach called Balanced Learning. At Jericho STEM Academy, the entire staff is STEM-certified.
“It’s a very family-oriented group,” Linden said. “All the teachers have been with us for a long time. We’re all very close.”
Jericho STEM is opening a second school in September at 520 South Oyster Bay Road, Hicksville, called the Heart and Mind STEM Center. To learn more about the Jericho STEM Academy, visit

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