Temple Emanu-El hosts its annual
Grandparents Day celebration.
andy Pitler says her heart lit
up when her grandson Jake, 5,
proudly announced to his pre-
school class, "This is my Bubbie!" She
was one of about 230 grandparents who
shared hugs and smiles and made happy
memories April 19 at the third annual
Grandparents Day celebration hosted by
Temple Emanu-El's early childhood com-
munity in Oak Park.
The grandparents were treated to a
sit-down breakfast before visiting the chil-
"Jake greeted me with his glowing,
happy eyes and smile Pitler said. "He ran
up to me with a great big hug:'
The grandparents (or a special family
friend) got to observe a regular school day,
including show-and-tell and a lesson about
the alphabet letter of the week. Then, they
worked on an arts-and-crafts project with
their grandchildren and made souvenir
key chains to take home. They also attend-
ed the school's weekly musical Shabbat
celebration in the sanctuary.
"I was delighted to see what a typi-
cal school day is like and how warm and
patient the teachers are Pitler added. "I
left with a warm feeling and knowledge
about Jake's preschool activities:'
Temple Emanu-El's preschool for chil-
dren ages 6 weeks to 5 years is beginning
its 30th year. They also have infant, tot and
summer camp programs. Director Eileen
Brand says many of the grandparents first
visited as parents when their own children
attended preschool. Some have made
generous donations, including contribu-
tions to purchase new outdoor playground
"I believe in the quote by Lois Wyse,
`Grandparents are the dots that connect
the lines from generation to generation;"
Brand said. "Intergenerational program-
ming is essential to the lives of all of our
Annette Berson of Birmingham came
dressed in black-and-white stripes at the
request of her granddaughter, Molly, 4,
who wanted to wear matching outfits.
Berson is a former nursery school teacher
from Long Island, N.Y. She says the
educational experiences the children are
Grandparents and grandchildren work on crafts together.
getting at an early age are an important
foundation for the future.
"These children are so familiar with
the alphabet and the sounds of the let-
ters;' she said. "They're learning respect
for the teachers; they're learning how to
sit and listen. They also have time for
fun and interpersonal relationships. This
was one of the most thrilling days I can
To learn more about Temple Emanu-El's
programs, visit its website: emanuel-mich.org
or call (248) 967-4020.
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Riley Gutman, 4, puts her hand over her
2-year-old sister Sydney's mouth while
having a picture taken with grandpar-
ents Jeff and Margo Lowe of California.
4-year-old Jacob Ingber of
Huntington Woods is read to by
his grandfather Paul Ingber of
Molly Frankel, 4, of Huntington Woods
and her grandmother Annette Berson of
Birmingham like to dress alike.
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Mark Zacks of West Bloomfield reads
to his 3-year-old granddaughter Leah
of Huntington Woods.