Recently I visited the Spokane Indian reservation at Wellpinit, Washington, to conduct training on math and science readiness for the tribe’s early childhood center staff.
The Pauline Stearns Early Learning Center is only a year or so old. In addition to providing a bright spacious up to date and modern learning center for their children with the latest equipment, the tribe did some other things which impressed me as well.
Mindy Flett, the Child Development manager for the tribe, related that the tribe had used the construction of the Early Learning facility to give individuals who wished to have training in the construction trades experience. Individuals apprenticed under experienced workers.
One of the “experts” stood out. He was bas relief artist. Consequently, the building is rich with art that reflects the children’s heritage and natural surroundings.
The tribe also decided to take advantage of the area’s bountiful sunlight. An entire array of photoelectric cells stands next to the Stearns Center parking lot to power the building.
Photos of the Pauline Stearns Early Learning Cener, the bas relief art and the photoelectric cells are below.