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Fostering Community at the Chinatown Learning Center

21/10/2019

Here at Crane Chinatown, we’re lucky to be a part of a vibrant community that thrives around the historic Chinatown Friendship Gate in the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection.

Our neighborhood is full of unique businesses, organizations, and people, and we’re determined to use our blog to shine a spotlight on their stories. As our first featured neighbor goes to show, Chinatown isn’t just a hub for food, festivities, and nightlife—it’s also a place where younger generations can learn and grow.

Chinatown Learning Center, located right within Crane Chinatown, is an award-winning, bilingual daycare and preschool. The curriculum focuses on building interpersonal communication skills and social and emotional skills while offering support and cultural resources for children and families.

Carol Wong, director of the Chinatown Learning Center, has mentored countless children and young adults throughout her career. “Our main goal is to prepare the kids for kindergarten, so we teach the kids in English. Then, if it needs to be translated, the teacher in the classroom will repeat it in Chinese,” she says. “We want them to communicate with their teachers when they get to kindergarten.”

Wong with Chinatown Learning Center students at Reading Terminal Market

Chinatown Learning Center continually fosters the close-knit, supportive community it has built both inside and outside of the classroom. Wong, who describes Chinatown as a caring and welcoming environment, has made it a point to integrate the senses of support and encouragement found in the neighborhood into the routine at the learning center.

“We want the kids to appreciate cultures and don’t want anyone to lose where they came from, which is why the community is very comfortable for all,” she adds. “There are lots of familiar foods and dialects.”

Chinatown is known for a variety of authentic and fresh cuisines, cultural events, and the local nightlife. As a resident of more than 20 years, Wong is a fan of supporting the local business community. She recommends both the Rail Park andthe Chinatown Night Market to any newcomers or visitors looking to explore the neighborhood, and for those looking to taste the famous flavors of Chinatown, she suggests spots like Ocean Market, Dim Sum Garden, and Ocean Harbor.

It’s a huge honor for us to say that Chinatown Learning Center is a part of of our Crane Chinatown family. From cultural events, to a bilingual early learning center, to a residential apartment community, Chinatown is certainly a neighborhood with plenty of stories to tell. Keep an eye on our blog to meet even more of our neighbors!