November 01, 2018
If you have been in our Early Learning areas or have enjoyed the displays throughout the lower level of the center, you might have noticed that there is an abundance of activity and creativity stemming from our youngest Y children. We can thank Amy Hirsh, our Early Learning Director and her team for these engaging visuals.
Since joining the Foglia team in June 2016, Amy has ignited our Early Learning programs with creativity and a passion for imaginative and creative learning. She introduced and implemented the Creative Curriculum. Creative Curriculum promotes social, emotional and physical development, language, literacy, math and cognitive skills. The curriculum also includes science and social studies and the arts to develop the whole child based on their individual developmental needs. Creating a play based engaging environment has been a focus for Amy since Day One and is evident throughout the Early Learning areas.
Amy brings a strong skill set to the Foglia Leadership Team. She attended Northern Illinois University and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. She received her Master’s degree from National Louis University in Early Childhood Administration. With over 17 years in the Early Childhood field, Amy is a firm believer in providing children time to play, especially in our structured society. She believes children are capable and competent learners as long as they are given endless opportunities and experiences to build from. It is this passion for learning and exploration that brought her to the Y.
Amy grew up in Morton Grove with two older siblings. As the baby of the family she learned early on how to capitalize on which older sibling had something she wanted. Her father instilled a strong work ethic in her, while her mom empowered her to always be a strong, independent woman. Her fondest memories evolve around spending time together as a family or gathered around the dinner table and just talking about their days. She smiles as she reflects on Saturday shopping trips with her mom and sister and having lunch. Amy lost her father at the age of 20, and learning that life is too short, values the memories left behind and that any family time should always be treasured.
Amy is a shopping enthusiast, one of her favorite past times. She loves the hustle and bustle of Chicago, and enjoys outings downtown as often as she can. She is an aunt to her friend’s children and spends time with her nieces and nephews, building relationships with them away from their parents. She has frequent sleepovers with them and like any good aunt; adopts the philosophy of “anything goes”, quite a contract from her professional life. She genuinely loves time spent with children and this is clearly evident when you observe her in the Y Preschool rooms, Y Kids Zone, or our two year old programs. She lights up when she is surrounded by them. Besides playing with her extended family, she loves spending time at the pool, beach or the ocean, catching up on celebrity gossip and reading up on new technology. She is an Apple enthusiastic, and you may find her counting down the hours for the next big product release!
We are so very fortunate to have Amy on our Foglia Leadership Team. She brings a passion for learning, enthusiasm toward creative and engaging play, and a dedication to serving the Y mission.