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Educational Main Street

Mary Botticelli Christensen

As part of the Center for Learning and Professional Education in ENHP, Educational Main Street has adopted a model of research, service, and outreach to integrate its mission to serve the educational needs of the Greater Hartford community and the academic needs of our University students.

Mary Botticelli Christensen
Director of Educational Main Street
Assistant Professor of Education

Beyond the Classroom Interview With Christensen

Science Fair 2013 in the News

Tutoring Program

University After-school Network

The future will be characterized by an unprecedented rate of change. Some predict that new ideas and innovations that may have taken years to come to fruition will, by 2015, take only weeks to emerge. This acceleration of new ideas, new technologies, and new challenges needs to be met by a new breed of teachers and students. The Center for Learning and Professional Education will assist EMS in translational research projects that will provide faster assimilation of data from the public school settings back to the university classrooms. This new data will enable the university and its students to prepare for the reality of an ever changing world.

EMS strives to keep Greater Hartford's youth in school by engaging them in educational partnerships involving children, parents, public schools, community organizations, local businesses, and the University of Hartford. The key to the program's success is its long-range approach to educational support derived from its partnerships. Not only do Greater Hartford’s students benefit from the work of EMS, it also provides our undergraduate University of Hartford students with meaningful service-learning opportunities.

Tutoring Program

All of our programming involves student tutors with majors in many academic disciplines at the University of Hartford. An increasing number of professors assign service-learning projects as part of their coursework.  They find that the tutoring experience is enhanced by and enhances class work. EMS trained and placed 450 tutors in the years 2012 – 2013.

EMS staff prepare our University students for their tutoring experience. In this preparation, tutors are exposed to the procedures and policies of being a good tutor and the pedagogy of tutoring literacy and numeracy. They receive training in diversity issues and are provided with varied experiences in rural, urban and suburban school settings. 

Tutors also explore the research behind the pedagogy from child development theorists Vygotsky, Ericsson, and Piaget. Handbooks are provided on line for students to refer to during their tutoring experience. All tutors complete a weekly reflection sheet linking their experiences to their coursework.

University After-school Network Initiatives:

The Educational Main Street Academy is an after-school initiative designed to provide school children with unique and challenging after-school programming to support their academic success. Participants are assigned a University student as mentor/educational coach.

The Parents’ College supports parents as first teachers of children. They will have the opportunity to attend courses on literacy, child development, and leadership. They will learn to be advocates for their children’s academic success using to technology and media to enhance their advocacy.

For further information about EMS, contact

Mary Botticelli Christensen

EMS Science Fair

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Science Fair a success with grade school students.  more