Resident Pens Valentine To ACE Academy In Silver Spring

SILVER SPRING, MD — A Silver Spring resident wrote a Valentine to the African Arts, Culture and Education Academy (ACE), located in two housing communities in Montgomery County: Park Montgomery in Silver Spring and Essex House in Takoma Park.

The ACE “addresses the needs of a growing population of African and immigrant families with a focus on writing, reading fluency, comprehension, and English language learning,” according to the program’s website.

ACE students explore their former and adopted cultures through songs and games, crafts, instrument-building and music-making, African drumming and dance and storytelling in the African Griot tradition. Parents also receive free access to skill-building supports including computer classes, English literacy, job readiness, advocacy training, as well as African dance workshops and other cultural enrichment opportunities, the website states.

Here is Silver Spring resident Elias Addullahi’s Valentine to ACE Academy:

February 14 is my seventh anniversary and the fourth Valentine’s Day I’m celebrating since settling in to this exceptionally prepossessing country – The United States of America. This year’s Valentine’s Day is even more exceptional because my son has joined an organization that provides children’s after school program – the ACE Academy (African Culture and Education Academy). The ACE Academy at Park Montgomery Apartments has helped my son and many other families in ways you may not imagine, at ACE he gets homework help and learns about African Culture and technology.


The ACE Academy has a structured homework routine. The program dedicates a certain amount of time for kids to complete their homework. By doing so, the academy saves time and energy, so parents can focus on other things before bed time. Homework help is especially important for immigrant families that may not be familiar with the U.S educational system.

Studying African Culture is another part of the afterschool program. It teaches our children poetry, drawing, quilting, music and dancing.

The ACE Technology program is my son’s favorite subject. I was glad to see him obsessed with simple electrical theory and constructing his first little robot. I think he has a great curiosity and interest in technology. For this reason, I gave him his first kid’s electronic kit as a reward. I wish that there was a program like ACE Academy in Senegal when I grew up!

The work of the ACE Academy reminds me of a quote from Nelson Mandela, “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.” So, this is all about ACE Academy stands for. They are making a revolution for the betterment of our children.

So for Valentine’s Day, I want to recognize and share my love and respect for the individuals and entities who stand for the wellbeing of our children, like the ACE Academy afterschool program. Their work makes a huge difference for families like mine at in Park Montgomery Apartments!

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