Unfortunately, this Big Kids Club season is coming to an end 🙁 and we’ve been doing our best to develop the necessary super powers for the winter.
So we packed our snacks, water, umbrella and stopped by the BC Lions Society for Children with Disabilities (Easter Seals House) to learn about the different super powers that children develop while they spend some time in this facility, either because they need medical treatment or surgery, or because they are facing a serious illness or trauma.
Just so you know, Easter Seals Houses (located in Vancouver & Victoria) provide a low cost, caring place to stay for parents and children, with professional and sweet staff, big rooms and playrooms!
We were welcomed at the front door and soon we got to see all the spaces and playrooms and I must say (and I think all the kids agreed on this one), no wonder these amazing kids have so many super powers! The playrooms are so advanced! Just as advanced as “Bat Bear” 😆
Back at Buddings headquarters…
How important do you think it is for a kid to know how to treat/help someone in a wheelchair or any alternate ability? Do you think that people with an alternate ability could be considered heroes?
As a teacher and human, I think is very important and yes, they are…who knows?! We might run into someone who needs help in the Sky train, bus, sidewalk and just when we are about to reach out to them and help, they can activate their super powers and manage to work it out on their own. It’s amazing.
For this lesson, my inspiration was Terry Fox, Canadian athlete and humanitarian who in 1980, after having one of his legs amputated, embarked a cross-Canada run to raise money for cancer research…wait, wait…cross-Canada?
Oh, yes! And the best part is that his brother joined him too…but, he was way back, in a van, following him wherever he went.
And what was the whole point of doing more cancer research? Well, it’s not just cancer, it was all about awareness. Children should be aware of cases like this, where consequences mean learning a new ability, surviving and keep going. In fact, Terry Fox once said:
“Even if I don’t finish, we need others to continue. It’s got to keep going without me.”
Now, you’re probably thinking: how can we help? … well… one word: AWARENESS.
We started with something simple and that is how to react if we get to be in front of someone with an alternate ability. For this activity, my friends: Sylvie, Josiah, Max, Will, Carter and Arianna helped me list the most important things to keep in mind if we ever come across some with a cane, wheelchair, guide dog, nurse…
- Smile (all the time), people with “eye” super powers can sense if we smile or not.
- Say hello (we can ask why the wheelchair, with a nice smile of course).
- Ask if they need any help.
- Make sure you say good bye!
In order to practice some of the things we’ve learned, my friend “Arroyo” and Ben (his guide dog) planned to meet at the Vancouver Public Library’s Central Branch at 2:30 p.m. (Here’s a photo of the first time I met Ben).
We walked around the library as we waited for our friends and got a chance to go over our list, share a few experiences about people with special super powers and honestly, I felt really happy to hear that the kids really felt this Big Kids Club lessons as much as I did, it felt very rewarding 🙂
Sadly, Arroyo & Ben didn’t make it on time and we had to travel back to our headquarters but don’t panic, they’ll come to Buddings soon and hopefully they’ll be part of our final classes.
Join us ! Thursdays 1 – 4pm, smiles included!
As you may have noticed (or maybe not), I was away for two weeks because a “last minute” family trip came out and I had to attend it. But that doesn’t mean that our thursdays Big Kids Club is not happening, it just means that we just started and our fist class was amazing in every way.
Before getting into learning how some people have alternate abilities, either because they were born with a condition or maybe they develop it at some point in their lifes; we explored our five senses, since after all, some of us basically rely on our five senses to provide information about the world around us, but there’s people that can’t .
We all agreed that our senses allow us to enjoy our food, see colors, hear noises, feel textures, smell flowers…but also allow us to move around, to make decisions and even locate an object with our eyes, lift it up with our hands and maybe smell it with our nose? 😆
Superhero School’s story by Aaron Reynolds was the best way to get our big kids into the use of our senses and how important they are. Leonard, the kid in the story, is no ordinary kid—he’s enrolled in Superhero School, where leaping tall buildings in a single bound is considered child’s play but also it’s a place where a lot of kids with “special powers” attend. Some of them can’t use their eyes, so they have X-ray vision, others can’t use their legs so they have Titanium legs. Here’re some cool images from the book + link with info:
As soon as we finished reading this amazing story, we jumped into our hands-on activity called “Five Senses Self-Portrait” which consisted on using different objects to identify the 5 senses of the human body and how we relate each of them to something we can see over the table (using our eyes 😀 ).
These kids are so smart! … I asked them something short: “Tell me something about any of your senses” (I performed a few charades along with my question, of course) and their questions were so accurate and impressive that I had to take note of them so I could share them afterwards. Here they are 😆
Sylvie: “I don’t like spicy smells”.
Will: “We can taste food because of our tongue”, “Is that sandpaper?”.
Carter: “I can see small eyes in the table”.
Max: “I like the smell of flowers”.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
We began our portrait by adding our face, our 2 eyes, our mouth, our nose (with a cute little cotton ball) 2 ears and 2 hands! … waited a little for the glue to dry well and enjoyed feeling our portrait. It’s amazing!, this activity encouraged all the big kids to explore their senses, the hands were #1 in the class though, because they were made out of sandpaper, but everybody had so much fun 😆
For our next class (Oct 6th), we’ll start our exploration on the human body’s senses & alternate abilities and get ready for our upcoming fieldtrip on October 13th to SportAbility of BC right on Marine Drive.
See you soon! 😉
For some of you, summer was as fast as light…but for me, this summer was definitely a slow one.
Back in July, I injured my right knee and spent almost the entire month in a wheelchair, then switched to crutches in August and now I’m finding my way back on my two feet, which still hurts and there’s still a long way to go until I’m fully recovered, but that doesn’t mean I’m disabled!
It just means that I was able to develop a new alternate ability (along with a whole new package of patience) and now, my arms and my left leg are so strong that I can’t believe it!
For kids, this happens much faster, in fact, they are more apt to learn all sorts of things if they are exposed to consistent multisensory experiences like using their sense of touch and smell (if visually impared) or just having someone to help.
Now, kids can be very curious if they are in front of someone with an alternate ability and that’s why I want to help them explore ways to sensitively communicate with other kids with any “super power”.
From a personal perspective and after being in a wheelchair, I have to say that kids need to be taught how to interact with others who may act or look different. Join us every thursday from 1 – 4 in a multisensory experience, where we’ll explore from our senses to all the different types of physical – mental conditions or let’s just call it: Super Powers!
If you’ve been at Buddings this summer, you might have noticed that Isabel Socorro Bravo… was in a wheelchair! Omgoodness!
In fact, Isabel has known a few people in wheelchairs, some with alternative abilities, and even before her knee injury (healing, now, thankfully) the rainbow of differences among people’s powers has been a topic close to her heart.
This season, she shares some perspective with the kids. They are curious, and there’s so much to cover. The senses of the human body are part of our evolution, and they help to create our understanding of the world, and people who have different abilities find all kinds of ways of making it work. Find out more by joining them, Thursdays from 1 – 4pm.