Summer has always been core to DREAM’s foundation. In the organization’s earliest years as Harlem RBI, it was clear that pairing baseball and softball programming with academic tutoring would combat participants’ summer learning loss and better prepare them for their next year of school. Fast forward 30-plus years, and DREAM is still implementing its free famed summer programming as part of the extended-day, extended-year structure of DREAM Charter Schools—because it is key to student success.
An essential part of DREAM’s Grow the Whole Child model, summer programming helps ensure students have continuity between the support they’re receiving during the school year—including social-emotional, academic, and physical-wellness development—and the summer months. Studies demonstrate that, on average, students in the United States lose 39% of their school year gains during the summer. That’s why preventing learning loss is a critical part of DREAM’s summer programming, and for 95% or more of participants in recent years, it’s worked to keep them at or above grade level between semesters. But DREAM’s strongest emphasis is on ensuring that relationship-building and social-emotional health are supported year-round.
This summer, DREAM will offer the following programming for Grades PreK-7, focusing on academic support, social-emotional learning, athletic development, and enrichment activities.
REAL Kids (Pre K-Grade 4)
REAL Kids is an award-winning summer program that uses the power of teams to help youth develop academic, social, and emotional skills through a unique literacy, team-building, and baseball/softball curriculum. Enrollment includes regular reading instruction by a certified teacher, four free Friday field trips, breakfast, lunch, and snacks for all participants, and team uniforms (including two t-shirts, one pair of baseball pants, and socks). REAL Kids locations for Summer 2022 include East Harlem, Mott Haven, and Highbridge.
DREAM University (Grades 5-7)
Open to all DREAM middle school scholars, DREAM University is a summer program in both East Harlem and Mott Haven that uses the power of teams to help youth develop academic, social, and emotional skills through engaging STEM and literacy programs, team-building, and an athletics curriculum. Enrollment includes math and ELA sessions to prepare students for the next grade, access to athletics at Roberto Clemente State Park, and breakfast, lunch, and snacks for all participants.
Rookies (Rising 1st and 2nd Graders)
DREAM Rookies is a co-ed t-ball league for rising 1st-2nd graders that takes place on Saturdays at the Field of Dreams in East Harlem. Participants are placed on teams coached by volunteers who teach sportsmanship, teamwork, respect, potential, effort, and fun through baseball/softball. Each participant will not only learn baseball/softball skills, but will also learn skills in making friends and being part of a team. Rookies receive a team uniform, including a t-shirt, baseball pants, and socks, and participate in the Rookies awards ceremony. First and 2nd grade students enrolled in REAL Kids during the week are welcome to also spend their weekends with Rookies!
Registration for all DREAM Summer 2022 programming is now open, and all DREAM scholars (including incoming students) are guaranteed a spot. Non-DREAM students are also welcome to register for REAL Kids and Rookies, as space allows. All of DREAM’s summer programming is free.