Child’s Play: The Register, May 1971

A child’s love for coloring, painting or dancing is unadulterated by expectations and infectious, just like the smile of the little girl featured on the May 1971 cover of The Register. In this edition, readers were introduced to The Learning Lab, a preschool with a curriculum described as “an eclectic use of Piagetian conclusions, Montessori-based materials and experiential philosophy.”

Founded by Mrs. Stewart Bennett, The Learning Lab offered a home-like atmosphere with opportunities for children to explore their environment and engage with the arts. Two of the most popular “instructors” at the center were a pair of geese who roamed freely in the backyard among the swing sets, slides and rows of drying mudpies.

“Children are entitled to experiences that nourish happy spirits, experiences that encourage their expression of that which is good and true and beautiful,” Bennett said. “Children are entitled to the fullness of experience and to many forms of expressive art.”

But the power of art is not reserved for the transformative years. Art transcends age and circumstance, enriching our everyday lives with beauty, meaning and profound connections.

Today, the space formerly occupied by The Learning Lab is a senior living center that touts offering a variety of activities, including concerts, crafts and performances that nourish the body, mind and spirit of residents. What a poignant reminder that at any age, there is great value in taking the time to create and enjoy art.