Chittick Elementary

Michelle Burnett-Herndon, Principal
154 Ruskindale Road, Mattapan, MA 02126
Phone: 617-635-8652
Directions via Google Maps
Access via MBTA Public Transit
BPS Report on Teaching & Learning for Chittick Elementary

Partner University: Tufts University
Family Community Outreach Coordinator:
Florence Taylor
Number of Students: 291

Step UP Activities

  • Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (TUSDM) faculty and staff treated 124 Chittick students during the 2009–2010 school year, an increase of 18% from 2008–2009. In an effort to drive up enrollment, TUSDM staff attended the back-to-school Family Night to answer questions about the program and hand out permission forms. During the year, two students were referred to and treated by outside dentists after TUSDM staff diagnosed critical abscesses which can lead to serious infection. 
  • Tufts arranged for a student from Simmons College School of Social Work to intern at the Chittick. The intern facilitated group sessions with students and worked with them on social skills.

  • Two afterschool programs affiliated with the Chittick participated in the Healthy Eating Active Time (HEAT) Club program led by a Tufts nutrition graduate student. In the fall, afterschool coordinators at the Mattahunt Boys & Girls Club and the Chittick After School Program were invited to a HEAT Club training session led by a Tufts nutrition graduate student who introduced the curriculum to be taught by the program staff. In November, Tufts nutrition students participated in the Mattahunt Club’s Family Feast by preparing vegetarian chili and distributing nutrition education materials. One hundred and fifty parents and students attended the event. 
  • In January 2010, Tufts arranged for members of the critically acclaimed Handel and Haydn Society to perform at the Chittick. Teachers were provided with advance materials to prepare the students for the “Voices of History” performance. 
  • Graduate students from Tufts and Boston University returned to the Chittick in March 2010 to coordinate the second annual Physical Activity Month. Every Thursday, the students taught interactive workshops on physical activity and nutrition to Chittick students and parents. Various sessions focused on yoga poses, muscle strengthening exercises and reading nutrition labels. Each week, the instructors introduced a healthy snack and explained the nutritional benefits of that food. The young students delighted in using pedometers to record how many steps they took during the 90-minute sessions. With assistance from the Tufts and BU students, each family set specific goals around eating healthier and becoming more physically active.
  •  In June 2010, the Chittick String Players, led by volunteer Betsy Hinkle of the Boston Public Quartet, performed in the Tufts Community Music Program’s end-of-semester concert on the Medford/Somerville campus. Eleven students participated in the concert and performed “Lean on Me,” “Ode to Joy,” “Beat It,” and “Blue Note Boogie.” Tufts provided transportation.
  • Twenty fifth-grade students visited Tufts University School of Dental Medicine for the annual Science Across the City program. Following a greeting from Dean Lonnie Norris, faculty, staff and dental students guided the group through hands-on lessons in oral health including the application of sealants, the plastic material that is bonded to teeth to prevent cavity-causing plaque. Using a dental tool, the Chittick students applied the sealants to plastic teeth and then watched as dental students gave them a personal demonstration of the ultraviolet light that molds the sealant to the tooth.
  • Harvard supported the YMCA afterschool program in the use of SmartTALK, the Harvard Achievement Support Initiative’s (HASI) signature homework support program.