PO Box 590 Rhinebeck, NY 12572 info@cultureconnectrbk.org 845.379.4725

Life, Learning, and Language (LLL)

CultureConnect recently wrapped up the 2017 SUMMER LLL Program for ENL (English as a New Language) learners – combining students from both Rhinebeck and Red Hook School Districts this year for the first time. The program operated for the month of July providing 12 half day sessions at St. Christopher’s School on Benner Road in Red Hook. Led by Program Director Wendy Brisley, the program was an immediate success as 35 students – our highest enrollment ever! – signed up for the summer session. The academic and social program supported student learning in the English Language Arts and provided an opportunity for ENL learners and their families from Rhinebeck and Red Hook to engage with one another. As the school year begins, we are ramping up our after-school LLL program in both Rhinebeck and Red Hook school districts. Contact us if you’re interested in volunteering!

children playing a cooperative game with water
Team work is better with water!
"We love LLL" spelled out by kids
Creative language learning!

Life, Learning and Language (LLL) is an after-school and summer academic enrichment program for students in grades kindergarten through 6 who live in the Rhinebeck and Red Hook Central School Districts. The goals of the program are to enhance language and other academic skills, promote confidence, address achievement gaps, foster interpersonal and social relationships, and nurture a sense of the child’s and family’s belonging in the school and local community.

LLL promotes the academic success of students who are struggling to keep up with peers. While CultureConnect aims to serve all youth in our community, LLL targets youth who may be underserved by school or community programming. The school identifies students to participant in LLL based on their ability to benefit from tutoring to achieve and maintain grade level appropriate academic proficiency. Many of the students receive other academic support services from the school and/or live in homes where English is not the primary language spoken. The program helps students to become fully engaged in the school and local communities. The LLL program began in 2005.

School Year:

During the school year, LLL meets after school two times per week from October through December and from February through May. Participants work one-on-one or in small groups with volunteer tutors from Bard College (located in the adjoining town) and Rhinebeck High School. The Program Coordinator trains and supervises the tutors and coordinates learning plans with the participants’ classroom teachers.

The tutoring sessions are designed to help students accurately and more consistently complete homework assignments, enhance their academic skills, and promote self-confidence, interpersonal relationships, and a sense of belonging to the school community.


The summer program meets for 3 hours per day, three days per week for 4 weeks. Professional teacher work with students to combat the “summer slide” that often occurs when students do not practice skills learned in their previous grade. Our target population is at higher risk of summer slide due to the lack of academic reinforcement at home throughout the summer and limited opportunities to practice English and academics at home. The summer program is open to the same population as the school year program.

Family Advocate:

The Family Advocate component of LLL brings bilingual volunteers, under the supervision of the Program Coordinator, together to work with families (with students in kindergarten through 12th grade) to enhance their interactions with teachers and administrators, providing translation services and advice on how to navigate events and activities over the school year. These Family Advocates help students and families of English language learners to fully engage with their schools.

  • Teachers and administrators recommend students for the program, identify learning objectives, and provide feedback on the effectiveness of the program.
  • Teachers and administrators identify families who may benefit from having family advocates and actively engage the family advocates when appropriate.
  • Rhinebeck High School helps to identify tutors for the program.
  • Middle school students who have “graduated” from LLL may return as volunteer “ambassadors,” assisting with the school year program.

Bard College is an active partner with CultureConnect in LLL.

  • The Trustee Leader-Scholar program identifies a Student Representative to help recruit and coordinate the activities of the Bard tutors.
  • Each semester between 10 and 20 students from Bard volunteer as tutors for LLL. Many tutors return semester after semester.

Program Evaluation:

  • The Program Coordinator receives specific learning goals from each child’s classroom teacher and is in regular contact with the teachers regarding progress towards those goals.
  • The Program Coordinator submits month reports to the CultureConnect Board of Directors, including data on the program and anecdotal commentary that speaks to the success or difficulty of the program.
  • The Program Coordinator conducts surveys at the end of the school year and summer programs in areas of organization, structure and content. Students, parents, and classroom teachers complete the surveys.

kids playing with puzzle on floor
Cooperative play