Wrapping up the trip to NYC

Museum of Moving Images in Queens, NY

Our last day in NYC started out in Queens where we toured the Museum of Moving Images.

Amazingly tall buildings!

Then it was off to the 5th Avenue area for free time among iconic landmarks.

Iconic landmarks


More iconic landmarks


Rockerfeller Center

At Rockerfeller Center we toured NBC studios and saw where several popular television shows are filmed.  A few lucky students even got to be newscasters and weather forecasters for awhile.

Taking an unexpected change of plans in stride!

After the studio tour, we learned that the bus had broken down and that we were taking the subway to Chelsea for dinner.  Imagine!  Fifty-five people all boarding and exiting one subway car at the same time.  Whew!

A thrilling subway ride!

We managed to have a great time despite the unexpected change of plans.

This was our final day in New York City.  Friday morning we boarded our bus bright and early for the long drive back home to Murphy.  After spending three full days in the city that never sleeps, the bus was full of sleepy, tired folks.  We rolled back into The Learning Center! parking lot at 2am with a huge cheer of relief.

After all, there’s no place like home.

TLC Hits New York City Day 3

Day 3 in NYC began in Liberty Park for a clear view of the Statute of Liberty.

Liberty Park


Statute of Liberty


Ms. Shelley sure makes us strong in PE. So strong we can even hold the Statute of Liberty in the palm of our hand!


Next we boarded the bus and headed into Chinatown.


Where we found exotic fruits . . .

Exotic fruits sold on the streets of Chinatown

and other curious things.

Other exotic things found in Chinatown

Including a Samurai warrior that was wearing a TLC t-shirt!

TLC Samurai!

Next it was off to the South Sea Port.

South Seaport

And a walking tour of the Financial District of Lower Manhattan.

New York Stock Exchange


The bull on Wall Street


Other curious things found in the Financial District

For dinner we headed to Little Italy.

Dinner in Little Italy at La Mela


A Polar Bear in Little Italy??

We capped our day off by a trip to the Empire State Building . . .

Empire State Building Lobby

and a gorgeous view of the city at night.

View from atop the Empire State Building

TLC Hits New York City Days 1 & 2

Natural Bridge, Virginia

Day one of the trip meant meeting at The Learning Center! to board the bus at 5:30am.  Once loaded we headed out and stopped for a few hours at the Natural Bridge in Virginia.  This naturally created land form was both awe inspiring and beautiful.

After 19 hours on the road, we arrived in Elizabeth, NJ a bit before 2am.  We’d have to wait until morning to get our first glimpse of the city.


First experience in NYC!

First stop?  The Cathedral of Saint John in Upper Manhattan.  Stunning!

Cathedral of St. John, Upper Manhattan, NYC
The gothic architechture was amazing!
The whole crew before heading to our next location.

Next was a stop at the Tomb of Ulysses S. Grant along the Hudson River.

The Tomb of Ulysses S. Grant along the Hudson River
Just chilling.

A quick (relatively speaking since driving anywhere in NYC doesn’t happen quickly) trip through Harlem on our way to the Natural History Museum.

Drive through Harlem.

Headed out on foot to Times Square

You could feel the excitement among the students as we headed out to Times Square.  Okay.  Okay.  Yes, the adults in the group were equally excited.

Times Square!

Yes there really are that many people EVERYWHERE in New York City!

Dinner at Planet Hollywood

A nice welcome from Planet Hollywood.

After dinner we saw Wonderland in the Marquis Theater.

After dinner it was on to see the Broadway musical Wonderland.  It was incredible!

Tomorrow I’ll share day 3.

New Junior Beta Club Inductees

This past week eleven new students were inducted into Junior Beta Club at The Learning Center.

The National Junior Beta Club is an organization for 5th-8th graders and seeks to promote the ideals of character, service, and leadership among students, and to reward students for their academic achievement.   To be eligible for the club, a student must have an academic average of 93 or above.

Great job students!


Earth Day Science Fair Winners from TLC!

Each year in honor of Earth Day, Tri-County Community College hosts an Earth Day Science Fair open to all 6th – 8th grade students in Cherokee County.  Under the guidance of TLC Science teacher Ms. Emily, 6th-8th grade students at our school enter this Fair.  This year TLC students earned high praise and awards for their entries.

Our school brought home the following awards:

  • Sixth grade 1st place in tradtional science
  • Sixth grade 1st place in Earth Day Relevant division
  • Seventh grade 1st place traditional science
  • Seventh grade 2nd place traditional science
  • Seventh grade 1st place creative science
  • Seventh grade 2nd place creative science
  • Seventh grade 1st place Earth Day relevant division
  • Eighth grade 1st place traditional science
  • Eighth grade 1st place Earth Day relevant division
  • Eighth grade 1st place creative science
  • Eighth grade 2nd place creative science
  • And, best in show!

Wow!  We are so proud of you all!  Way to go!

Cherokee County Transit teams up with TLC!

Recently TLC! forged a new community partnership with Cherokee County Transit.

Since our school does not have a busing system, we have to rely on parent volunteers to drive students on trips and special events.  However, sometimes it isn’t possible to find enough drivers necessary.


Bingo!  Cherokee County Transit to the rescue!

TLC! and Henn Theater partner to suppport the arts

A handshake and a smile was all that was needed to complete a partnership between TLC! and the Henn Theater.
With cutbacks in arts programs across the country, the need is especially great in this community. The Learning Center! Charter school is filling that gap with local community and business support.
“Our parnership with The Henn Theater enables our students to experience drama electives in a stage environment.” Said school director Mary Jo Dyre.
The school, in turn, actively supports the theater by providing volunteers and publicity for events which will range from guest speakers for school fund raisers to chorus programs, fusion ensemble performances, strings elective performances and drama. The school plans to utilize the theater’s back-stage area for set design and for actors to wait in the wings during a performance.
“We are providing our strong force of parent and community volunteers who are eager to promote the arts within our school and our community,” added Dyre.

Stringed Instruments at TLC!

Students in our stringed instrument program are learning far more than just how to play great music.  Studies show that learning a string instrument at an early age impacts brain development!


These students also learn to relate music to other things such as science and math.  Plus they develop coordination and fine motor skills.  Not to mention important social skills, group coordination, self-discipline and self-initiative.

Instructor Dr. Vern Richardson

TLC! is incredibly lucky to have Dr. Richardson as our dedicated instructor.

Dr. Vernal E. Richardson’s career as a teacher and professional musician spans nearly 50 years. After graduating from Indiana University in 1956, Dr. Richardson received a position in the First Violin Section with the Atlanta Symphony for one season before entering pilot training with the US Air Force. He served as pilot of a B-47 jet bomber from 1956-59. Dr. Richardson then returned to Indiana University, where he received a M. M. in Violin and Conducting.

From 1959 to 1989 Richardson filled the role as Assistant/Associate Professor at various colleges and universities and as Orchestra Director at two high schools. He frequently served as adjudicator in festivals and as conductor of community and all-state string orchestras. He received his D. M. A. from Catholic University of America in 1977. Additionally, he performed as violinist in approximately 2000 commercial recordings, many of which received gold records for sales in excess of one million.

Dr. Richardson came to Atlanta Public Schools in 1989. He was selected Teacher of the Year at E. R. Carter Elementary in 1993 and has had a number of performances and residencies at Emory University. He has directed the orchestra programs at Inman Middle and Grady High Schools for the past four years. Under his direction the orchestras at both schools have regularly received Superior ratings at festival, and several of his students have been selected for All-State Orchestra positions.

Mighty impressive Dr. Richardson!


My favorite part has got to be walking into the Dining Commons during practice.  The tiny violins are precious.  Even better is the beautiful music coming out of them!