Published on July 20, 2014
Fitness Club: Fitness Club Stephanie Melise [email protected] July 20,2014 EEX4070 Introduction to the Host Setting: Introduction to the Host Setting The community or group of people that I focused on was in a neighborhood in Lake Mary, FL. This neighborhood had one child with disabilities who happens to be my cousin but we invited some of his friends who also had disabilities to join in on our group. I noticed that there was no park or open area for the kids to exercise at. This mission is to find ways to be outside and active while engaging with others. These activities took place through the neighborhood. Engagement Activities: Engagement Activities The community need was the lack of a park or open area for the children to exercise and to be outside at. I identified the need for this by driving around the neighborhood and seeing that there was a lack of an outside area. I wanted to create an opportunity for the people to get outside and become active even in there neighborhood where nothing is provided for them. It also gives the opportunity for the neighborhood to get involved with one another. We were engaged in a few different active activities. We walked, did yoga outside and played different outside games like rely races that kept everyone moving. We met every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 6:15 pm in front of my cousins house for an hour starting on May 26th through June 26 th for a total of 15 hours. Participant Demographics: Participant Demographics We had an average of 7 people who participated in the fitness club and 2 of them had exceptionalities. Ethnic background consisted of Caucasian and African Americans. Linguistic heritage was English. The exceptionality that were present was mental retardation which is an intellectual disability. Sec.300.8 Child with a disability: Child with a disability means a child evaluated in accordance with Sec. Sec. 300.304 through 300.311 as having mental retardation, a hearing impairment (including deafness), a speech or language impairment, a visual impairment (including blindness), a serious emotional disturbance (referred to in this part as "emotional disturbance"), an orthopedic impairment, autism, traumatic brain injury, an other health impairment, a specific learning disability, deaf-blindness, or multiple disabilities, and who, by reason thereof, needs special education and related services. Service in Action: Service in Action Perceptions of Differences: Perceptions of Differences Previously had interaction with people with disabilities. I really enjoyed working with a community to help improve an area that was lacking. My initial thoughts about the service learning project what that it seemed difficult but as I was reading more about it and actually doing the service learning I found that I really liked it. My thoughts now are that there is a bigger need of community's that are looking for ways to help people with exceptionalities. Be more involved. The experience that really impacted me was how much fun everyone had being outside and doing something as a group. Connections to Your Course: Connections to Your Course The course that I am enrolled in is EEX4070-14 Summer CW59 with Professor Rebecca Hines. Three topics I better understand is how each person has individual needs that differ from one another, the severity of each person differs and how important relationships are. I better understand course content because I was able to apply what I have been learning into my service learning project. It helped me make connection as to what I was learning and what I was doing and it showed me in a real way. These experiences will definitely help me with my future endeavors because it taught me that there is a real need to help other around us regardless of their exceptionalities. I will try and get involved as much as I can now and try to get my future students involved in as well. Civic Engagement: Civic Engagement My opinion about civic engagement and volunteerism is that everyone should really try and take part in it in some form. Civic engagement helps you realize the need of the community and lets you actively take part in the solution. The purpose that civic engagement serves is that its gets everyone involved including those with disabilities. Its lets everyone come together regardless of their exceptionalities and work together on the needs of the community or area. I think service learning is an effective way for students to learn. It gives them the opportunity to actually use what they are learning. This experience did motivate me to do more within my community. For awhile now I have been saying that I wanted to get involved but I just wasn’t sure how but now I feel comfortable in getting involved or staying involved. I would definitely want other teachers and students to embrace student learning. I believe it is an effective way to make connections as to what you are learning in the classroom and applying it within the community. Final Thoughts & Reflections: Final Thoughts & Reflections I would let other people know of my experience and share awareness about the things we can do to help people with disabilities. I think people are often to afraid to do it on their own just like I was. I think by letting other know what its like then they will be more willing to actively engage in volunteering. Teacher do a lot more than just teach the core classes. We teach students about the world around them and the things they can do to help improve them it.