When children are in the hospital for a period of time, they pine for personal and social interactions with others. They miss the entertainment and joy that accompanies working with others. They yearn for the opportunity to actively engage their minds. T.E.A.C.H. (Together Educating All Children in Hospitals) works to fill this growing need.
TEACH was founded by and is entirely run by students. In Spring 2013, TEACH’s two co-founders were inspired to help with the need for interaction and activity, the craving for a personal bond, and the lack of mental and physical stimulation exhibited by hospitalized children. Under the mentorship and guidance of Dr. Edward Burns of Albert Einstein College Of Medicine, TEACH was created to heal through teaching. TEACH began with monthly modules in a local Bronx hospital. In just over a year, TEACH grew to reach nine hospitals with hundreds of students signed up to volunteer from various universities around the tri-state area.
There are many former members who deserve credit for helping TEACH grow to become what it is today. We would like to thank Andrew Dym, Dina Golfeiz, Elisa Karp, Effie Klipper, David Mehl, and Michael Shavolian.
Today TEACH empowers a dynamic cohort of over 1,000 volunteers (and counting!) to bring educational, hands-on science activities to children facing medical conditions in over 30 hospitals and medical centers worldwide. In the past year alone, over 90 modules have brought smiles to more than 500 children. In the last few months alone, we have surpassed that number of children reached.
Through engagement with practical science concepts, the children are challenged yet empowered. They emerge comforted and confident, encouraged to successfully cope with the trials that lie before them. TEACH modules challenge children to think creatively and bring an element of fun to an otherwise monotonous day.
Our volunteers are committed university and medical students who devote their free time to TEACH. They develop ideas for modules, translate these ideas into practical design- fun and educational science experiments- and implement the modules for eager patients and their accompanying family members.
When TEACH volunteers visit, children get excited and get to experience STEM topics through more than 75 different interactive modules. Patients can learn about real life concepts while also having an exceptional amount of fun . They are amazed as they create silly putty while they learn about polymers and use basic engineering principles to build boats that really float. Observing the science of physiological respiration using yeast to inflate a balloon or discovering density by creating their very own lava lamps truly changes the way they view science, their stay in the hospital and life.
TEACH began a few years ago with three students servicing one hospital, once a month. This past year, TEACH has grown to include hundreds of student volunteers and to service more than 30 hospitals internationally. With partnerships and collaborations TEACH is reaching for innovative ways to reach more children, more often, and even more successfully.