General Info

La Mia Piazza : Italian Language Summer Camp


Children ages 4 to 14 will learn to communicate in Italian and explore Italy's culture through its visual and performing arts, sports, music, and cuisine. Our staff is highly qualified, creative and loves all things Italian.

Campers will practice the Italian language while discovering customs, regional particularities, art and craft, and delicious food. They will learn Italian songs and dances, play bocce balls and soccer, group and board games in Italian. Many more activities and surprises will make the camp's two weeks the most memorable time of the summer.

Camp date for 2016:July 11-15 & July 18-22

Camp times: 9:00am to 3:00pm

Tuition: $250 per week. Please make check payable to: Italian Language Summer Camp (some scholarships are available).

Location: William F. Cooke Elementary School, 2025 Graves Rd, Hockessin, DE 19707

Snack and lunch provided.

Before and after camp care will be available through Boy's and Girl's Club. For information call, 302-463 6188.



The Creators of La Mia Piazza

Justine Mataleno Clerc is a member of the Italian Commission on Italian Heritage and Culture. A graduate of the University of Delaware she is retired from Winterthur Museum and Gardens. Justine Mataleno Clerc is considered the historian of the Italian-American community of Delaware and has written and consulted extensively on this subject. She has also been a member of various Italian-American organizations. Justine is the President of the Delaware Italian-American Education Association.

Gabriella Finizio, DML was born and studied in Naples, Italy, where she was a doctoral student in Philosophy when she married and moved to the United States with her husband Michael, a pharmaceutical researcher with the DuPont de Nemours Company. In the USA, Gabriella received her BA in Latin and Greek from CUNY, her Master's degree in Applied Linguistics from the University of Delaware and her Doctoral Degree in Modern Languages from Middlebury College in Vermont, where she specialized in Italian Medieval-Renaissance Literature and Italian Cinema. She joined the Foreign Language and Literature Department at the University of Delaware in 1982 and earned the University's Excellence in Teaching Award in 1992 and 2010. Gabriella is also Delaware's Consular Correspondent for the Italian Consulate General in Philadelphia, and a board member of the Delaware Italian American Education Association.

Mary Teresa Sachele-Morrison has dedicated more than 40 years to teaching and coaching children from elementary school to university. She received a BA degree in Education with a concentration in French from Marywood College in 1968, a Master's degree in Education and Comparative Romance Languages (French, Italian, and Spanish) and Literature from SUNY, Binghamton, 1982; studied abroad: Quebec, Canada 1967, and Siena, Italy (Corso di aggiornamento) 1994. Mary Teresa is currently a member of PASR, NIAF, Sons of Italy, UNICO, and a lector at St. Edmond's Church, Rehoboth DE where she resides. She is also a volunteer at Beebe Hospital, Lewes, DE and an adjunct professor at Wesley College, Dover and Wilmington University, Rehoboth Beach Center. Mary Teresa is also a member of the Delaware Italian American Education Association.

The Advisors

Jack Polidori serves as the chair of the Commission's Education Committee. He was the Mid-Atlantic Government Relations Consultant for the National Education Association and prior to beginning the position in January, 2009, he worked as Government Relations Director for the Delaware State Education Association for the previous four years. He and his wife, Dr. Eva Peterson, currently reside in Wilmington. Jack holds a Bachelor's degree (cum laude) in history from St. Bonaventure University and a Masters degree in Labor and Industrial Relations form Michigan State University. He has worked for teachers' organizations for the past 35 years as a labor negotiator, organizer, political consultant, lobbyist, and communications/public affairs specialist. Two years ago, he became an Italian citizen and now also holds an Italian passport. His father's family originated from the Ascoli Piceno province of the Marche Region, his mother's family is from the Abruzzo region. Jack is also a board member of the Delaware Italian American Education Association.

Eva Peterson, ED.D. is one of the administrator of La Mia Piazza. She earned her B.A. at the University of Arizona, MS from Bank Street College of Education and ED.D at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She has taught, directed, and provided staff development for schools and programs in New York, North Dakota, Vermont, Massachusetts, Arizona, and Washington D.C. She is especially interested in the way children use play in their learning. Eva's Italian connection began with her interest in Ripatransone, Italy. It has grown through the Delaware Department of Education Program for International Education. Eva is also a board member of the Delaware Italian American Education Association.