We continue with our newest addition to the Blog: Classroom Focus. Each month, one of our teachers will share a behind-the-scenes peek into the life of our classes. This month: Our Transition classroom, led by teacher Lauren M:
We haven’t wasted any time getting back into the swing of things at Transition this year. We have been hard at work putting our vocational skills to good use in our community work sites. We have been working on collating, stapling, hole punching, photo copying and laminating, as well as stocking products, wiping tables and chairs, sweeping and recycling, just to name a few. While there is always endless work to be done at Transition, ALL of our students have paid or volunteer jobs in the community. Some students help set up at a restaurant every morning, and a few students help out at a local nursing home, while others help an office run at optimal levels with an always freshly stocked fridge, watered plants, clean windows and shredded papers. There is also an area thrift store that relies on our students’ help with folding clothes and organizing their inventory of shoes and books.
Aside from all the vocational work we do at Transition there is always time for lessons! Every week we read a different lesson about the rights we are all entitled to, such as the right to medical care, the right to send and receive mail, the right to vote, the right to freedom of speech and the right to privacy. After reading each lesson, the students answer questions based on their understanding of what we are learning, if they want to learn more about the subject and if they practice this right in their lives.
We also have weekly lessons in cooking (cupcakes for Halloween!!), art and making purchases in the community. The students really enjoy picking a location, usually Family Dollar or 7-11, and walking to make a purchase as independently as they can, from choosing a snack that is within their budget to paying the cashier.
All of the students at Transition have scheduled time in our workstations room, where they master independent tasks and build upon previously learned tasks. This has been instrumental in having the students work by themselves at their own pace without verbal redirection from a teacher. Watching the independence shown by every student is exciting!!
Before you start thinking Transition is all work and no fun, we always have weekly Friday outings. So far this year we have visited the Garfield Park Conservatory, Goebberts Farm, and Loyola University as well as many parks and libraries! We look forward to our community outings where we can practice our skills and independence.
We’re excited to see what the rest of this year will bring to Transition!
Thank you, Transition Team! Next month, we'll hear from our Jr. High class.