I read with interest the article in the July 4 Panorama section about Walla Walla's new Learning Center, a community space that serves the area's youngest children and provides a place for kids to experience interactive play along with their caregivers.
I am pleased the community, and in particular the Sherwood Trust Community Leadership Program, felt this project met an important need for our area's children.
However, I would like to remind the community that Walla Walla does have another wonderful facility that provides our children with the valuable opportunity to play and learn -- the Children's Museum of Walla Walla (cmww.org).
Since 2004, the Children's Museum has operated on the belief that children will learn more effectively when they are involved in meaningful, interactive, hands-on play with an adult. The museum offers children and their caregivers that opportunity with a number of displays that allow children to learn by doing -- for example, a toy kitchen in which they can create and serve gourmet meals, a construction workshop where they can hammer and build, and a dress-up stage where they can put on costumes and perform in front of a video camera.
The Children's Museum also gives everyone who wants to visit an opportunity to do so, with several free admission days throughout the year, and through the wonderful STARS program, which provides free yearly memberships to those who cannot afford them.
I feel the Children's Museum of Walla Walla offers the entire community a vital and easily accessible early learning resource, particularly for those who may not have access to other such opportunities.
I hope the Walla Walla community will recognize the importance of providing these resources for our youngest kids, and will support all of the area's early learning facilities.