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Play Dates With a Purpose


play date

Aside from the usual tantrums and sharing snafus, toddler play dates are generally fun for little friends-in-training. But for children with developmental delays, speech issues, or weak conversation skills, they can be a real struggle. Hence the new facilitated play date program from Team Esteem. Under the direction of Jamie Levine, M.S.Ed, a New York mom who earned her Masters at Fordham and taught in Manhattan private schools before founding Team Esteem, the new program is designed specifically for 2-year-olds who have emerging (but not developed) language skills, delayed motor skills, or weak social skills. Play dates between two carefully matched children are arranged on site or in-home, and led by a Team Esteem member who expertly encourages peer engagement and ramps up language usage through conversation and interactive activities such as singing and narrating play with blocks, balls, and other toys. During each play date, Team Esteem also arms grownups with strategies for encouraging language development and tools for creating social opportunities for their children. The 8-session program starts at $800, depending on location.

Team Esteem (located inside Making Milestones)
320 E. 65th St., between First and Second Aves.

About the Author
Jamie personally manages all Team Esteem cases. With significant expertise as an educator, she possesses exceptional assessment skills and a strong background in preparing individual education plans. Jamie is experienced in working as an active member of multidisciplinary teams where, along with therapists and psychologists, she creates individualized education plans that foster students’ growth.

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