Friday, March 18, 2016

Home School Day at Old Sturbridge Village

We live near an amazing "living" museum, Old Sturbridge Village.  A few times a year they have "Home School Days", with special session in the education building.

I registered the kids-- Amelia, ShanLin, and Leif-- online.  Oddly, there was no box to check for special needs or disabilities.  There was no spot to put a description of what extra help my children might need.  No opportunity for them to think differently about my kids.

 When we filed in with everyone else to join the appropriate group (Stenciling, for my kids), no one looked at them, then looked at me and said, "You'll be staying with them, right?"  Not one question or quizzical look.   No one asked for any special instructions. They didn't even have to call it inclusion.  They were simply kids in the class.

When they were done, the teacher pulled me aside and said Amelia had been an incredible help to her during the class.

Kimberly did a wonderful job of playing with the doll house, blocks, and puppets while her siblings were making note cards.

Afterwards, we had lunch and walked around a bit.  We are members at "The Village", so they have been there a lot and walk around with confidence.

After lunch we went back to the education building for another class; making and cooking pancakes over a fire.  They enjoyed their session, and Kimberly discovered a wooden cow and had even more independent fun...she has quite an imagination!

I have been trying this year to get the kids out to a lot of learning opportunities in the community...story hour, shopping, gym class at Springfield College, and other special (and affordable) home school events.  It is so nice when places, like Old Sturbridge Village, don't bat an eyelash at the quite obvious fact that 4 of the my kids have Down Syndrome and lower their expectations.

Although, it was a little embarrassing when we had breakfast at Cracker Barrel, and Kimberly finished her food, got down and tried to walk into the kitchen with her empty plate.  After all, they clear their own plates at home...

No comments: