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Why I Give by Taylor Booker

On my son’s first day at Lake and Park as a kindergartener, all of us--Rye, my husband Darryl, and myself--were warmly greeted by name. It’s a very simple act to acknowledge someone by name, but it’s a tremendous show of inclusion to a new family. Every drop off and pick up since, the Lake and Park teachers have welcomed all of us, even our dog River, into the school community with as much vibrance and excitement as they did on that first morning in 2018.

Lake and Park is not a building where our children “go to school”--it’s a continuously

evolving environment where they experience education. Our children learn how to reconfigure sticks and pieces of fabric so their kites fly higher, how to carve a crevasse in the sand to make lake water flow like a river, how to build a sturdy base so their block structures stand taller, how to walk and talk like a wild animal from the Amazon, how to use various textures and materials to tell a story on their own hand sewn quilt. Our children fall in love with learning through their adventures at the beach, journeys to parks across the city, getting dirty at the garden, playing in the rain, visiting museums, participating in all school sing, collaborating in group work, sharing their individual work, and showing joy and pride in displaying their accomplishments in performances and in galleries for their parents. From the first moment they are welcomed on those front steps, our children feel supported to discover and create and fail and triumph. The incredible teachers at Lake and Park are the catalysts of this exploratory learning and the foundation of this community. I give to the annual fund to show my appreciation to our teachers for their dedication to this community and the daily gift they give our children of experiential education.

Please join me in supporting our Lake and Park community.

Taylor Booker

(Parent to Rye, Class of 2024)

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