on the Block, Inc.
HISTORY OFIt all started in 1977, when ten year old Anthony, who had cerebral palsy was adjusting to his neighborhood elementary school. The practice of inclusion or mainstreaming as it was then called, was new for the school and Anthony was having trouble adapting. Academically, he was doing well, but he complained that the children in his class would not talk to him because he was different. In order to help him, Anthony’s special education teacher created a puppet she named “Mark Riley,” to educate the kids in the classroom about cerebral palsy. After that, many things changed for Anthony and The Kids on the Block, Inc. was launched.
THE KIDS ON THE BLOCK, INC.
Since then, thousands of “Mark Rileys” and the more than fifty other available “Kids” have educated children worldwide through a growing network of more than 1600 performing troupes in 30 countries! These dedicated, enthusiastic puppeteers, who may be educators, administrators, artists, parents or students, many of whom volunteer their time, perform in their communities from a selection of 42 different available Kids on the Block topics about disability awareness, social issues and medical and educational differences.
Ongoing development of new curriculums as well as continual revision of existing material keeps The Kids on the Block programs current with social, medical and educational changes. Consultation with and review by experts in the curriculum field of study as well as thorough field-testing of all new material assures reliability and accuracy of program material. All Kids on the Block, Inc. puppets are designed and hand-crafted in the United States to rigorous specifications to ensure a quality, lasting product.
Today, as a world leader in educating school-aged children through live puppetry, The Kids on the Block, Inc. continues the work that will bring more “kids” to children in communities all over the world.