Welcoming Another Great Year of Preschool Arts and Literacy!

Inner City-Inner Child’s Goals for 2017

Join us for a Happy New Year in 2017!

Thanks to our supporters, Inner City-Inner Child (ICIC) had an outstanding 2016, combining the power of the visual and performing arts and the magic of literature to create vibrant, meaningful, and long-lasting educational experiences for preschoolers in the most disadvantaged communities in our nation’s capital.

In addition to loving the work we do with children, teachers, parents, and our team of teaching artists, we made significant strides in our mission of helping to place preschool children in low-income communities in Washington, DC on the road to literacy and future success by empowering their educators to use the arts to teach academic skills. 

As we welcome 2017, we are delighted to share with you this summary of our preschool arts and literacy approach, our fiscal year 2016 accomplishments, our fiscal year 2017 goals, and our plans for the future. We look forward to spending another great year with you!

Our Approach to Preschool Arts and Literacy

ICIC envisions a world in which every child has access to quality early childhood development programs, and every early childhood educator has access to quality professional development.

To achieve our mission and vision, we use a three-tiered approach:

  1. Arts and literacy programs and book donations for underserved preschool children

  2. Professional development workshops and literacy trainings for their early childhood teachers

  3. Family literacy workshops for the children’s parents and caregivers    

The centerpiece of our programming is Dancing With Books, a 5-10 week classroom residency with teaching artists that includes African dance and drumming, creative movement, music, and singing, culminating in a dynamic final performance with artists, children, and teachers.

Our FY 2016 Accomplishments

In fiscal year 2016 (July 2015 - June 2016), we had an extraordinary year in which:

  • ICIC served 3,517 children in DC’s Wards 7 and 8, the communities with the most young children, and the greatest need for high quality early childhood education programs.

  • 438 teachers earned 1,175 professional development hours certified by DC’s Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE).

  • We held a total of 232 workshops, including 186 Dancing With Books workshops and 17 Naptime U. professional development workshops.

  • 45 families participated in two Read With Me family literacy workshops.

  • ICIC donated 1,927 books to children and their families.

  • We were honored to be finalists for the 30th Annual Mayor's Award for Excellence in Arts Education.

  • We were proud to be featured in the 2016-2017 Catalogue for Philanthropy, the DC area’s venerable guide to giving.

Our FY 2017 Goals

ICIC’s overarching goal each year is to close the achievement gap for preschoolers from low-income families in DC by: (1) improving the professional skills of teachers and the academic skills of the students we serve; and (2) increasing our output numbers from the previous year.

Toward that end, in fiscal year 2017 (July 2016 - June 2017), we seek to:

  • Reach 3,800 vulnerable children in early childhood centers and school pre-K classrooms in DC’s most challenged neighborhoods.

  • Distribute 2,200 quality, developmentally appropriate books to early childhood education programs and to preschool children to take home.

  • Create cozy classroom reading corners with books, bookcases, and soft rugs.

  • Train 700 teachers from child development centers and school pre-K programs in low-income communities in DC.

  • Reach 95 low-income families to show them ways to become involved with their children’s early literacy and learning.

Our Future Plans

To accomplish our goals for FY 2017 and beyond, we plan to:

  • Expand our infant-toddler (age 0-3) programs to support community-based child development centers.

  • Continue our expansion into DC public school (DCPS) and charter school pre-K classrooms.

  • Increase parent engagement through expanding our new partnership with Project Create.

  • Expand our teaching artist team to meet the growing demand for ICIC programs.


For more than two decades, Inner City-Inner Child (ICIC) has supported early childhood education in Washington, DC through arts education programs and early childhood development training. We provide quality arts integration and early childhood development programs that serve low-income families in DC. ICIC also provides arts-focused professional development programs for teachers who work in early childhood centers and school-based early childhood education programs in DC. In addition, we engage low-income DC parents in child development activities that help them create learning experiences at home.