Monday, March 06, 2017
NORTHAMPTON — Amid the piles of brightly colored building blocks, Barbara Black, 66, kneels comfortably among several 4- and 5-year-olds on the floor of a Bridge Street School classroom.
“What’s this one?” she asks each child, her seeing-eye dog, Ms. Pie, wagging its tail patiently at her side. “What are you making?”
For Black, this is what early childhood education is all about.
“It’s really being part of the world that wants to keep letting children play, because that’s how they learn,” said Black, the early childhood coordinator for Northampton Public Schools. “They need to experience the world.”
It is Black’s dedication to those principles — to improving education for young children and their families — that has made her the third annual Daily Hampshire Gazette “Person of the Year.”