LABBB Collaborative 
Newsletter
April 2014

In This Issue
Message from the Executive Director
 
by: Patric Barbieri, LABBB Executive Director

Dear LABBB Community:

  

Now that April is over, we are all looking forward to May flowers. We certainly received enough rain to support this growth, and I'm sure everyone is looking forward to seeing the growth and rejuvenation of our environment.  

 

It was great to see members of the LABBB community at the 10th Annual Special Olympics. In New England, we have a special affinity with the weather; we are obsessed with it, and we know only too well that it can change at a moments notice.  When the Special Olympics date approaches, we watch the weather for weeks; if we see any inkling of rain we now begin to focus our attention for exact hours it is suppose to rain that day. Fortunately, the rain stopped just in time for the events! It was a cool day, but nothing that would stop our athletes from getting out there and competing.  Thank you, to the LABBB community, for coming out to support this event. 

 

Everyone with whom I spoke at the Olympics was having a great time. If we could capture this day and bottle it, to have available to open on days when we need it, the world would be a happy place. Each year I speak with and find students and families that just want to express their appreciation and emotion about the Special Olympics and their experience at LABBB. This day is special not only for the athletes, but for everyone coming to watch and socialize.  

 

Many of the LABBB staff also feel rejuvenated after going through LABBB's first Coordinated Program Review (CPR). Although this was a significant amount of work, it was actually a positive experience. The auditors said that after they spent a week interviewing LABBB staff, building principals, and parents, they felt an overwhelming sense of "Community in LABBB." To hear this from someone who was only visiting for a week was very powerful.  

 

The last words that the auditors said to us as we were finishing the audit review was, "LABBB, you did Good!"  

  

 

Twitter
Please follow LABBB Collaborative users and hashtags:
@patricbarbieri
@LABBBrec
@LABBBnurse
#labbbafterschool
#labbbbasketball
#LABBB

Arlington High School Takes the Pledge to END the R-Word

 

by Jeff Caritey, Teacher, LABBB Arlington High School 


This year marks the 5th anniversary of Spread the Word to End the Word, a universal effort to eliminate demeaning language towards people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and replace it with respect. Students at Arlington High School took the pledge this month during lunch in the school cafeteria to show their support in both words and actions to create communities of inclusion for people with IDD.

 

On Friday March 14th, the AHS Best Buddies Chapter hosted its second annual Spread the Word to End the Word assembly in the auditorium.  There was a great attendance by the Arlington High community as well as several guest speakers. The LABBB students did a great job getting up in front of the packed auditorium with their Best Buddies to introduce other speakers. For many people getting up in front of a filled auditorium can be stressful, but our students practiced and did a great job!


 

LABBB Upcoming Events

  
  • Recreation Activities: For more information please click here: LABBB Recreation.    

  • May 15  7 - 9 PM, Bedford Best Buddies Dance, Bedford High Cafe
  • May 15  7 - 8:45 PM, Parent Advisory Council Meeting get together will be held at Margarita's in Lexington, 438 Bedford Street. More details to come via e-mail.   
  • May 17&18 Lexington BattleGreen BBQ Festival 
  • May 27 - 31  Disney Trip

 

Alaska Unit at Butler Elementary School

 

by Sandra Manzella  

 

This past March, Ms. Manzella's class began an Alaska unit designed to follow the inclusion curriculum at the Daniel Butler Elementary School in Belmont. The students became engaged as they listened to several Alaska themed picture books. A true favorite for many of the students was Baby Bear, written by Kadir Nelson. The students enjoyed learning about Alaskan animals, the Inuit tribe, along with the story of Balto and the Iditarod. They participated in fun Alaskan activities including, creating an edible polar bear, building a sugar cube igloo, watching educational videos, learning Alaskan based poems, writing about their favorite animals and creating 2 dimensional totem poles. The class also joined the rest of the second graders to welcome a special K-9 guest named Teddy and his human companion and musher, who talked about what it takes to be participate in a dog race. Studying Alaska offered many unique and interesting experiences, and now we are looking forward to spring and our next unit, which is on bumble bees, ladybugs and butterflies.  

 

 

 

 

Community Access and Travel Training

 

By Chris Holet, LABBB Vocational Coordinator 

 

LABBB continues to emphasize Community Access and Travel Training opportunities for its students.  Community Access provides students with the opportunity to generalize and apply the academic and social skills they learn in a school setting to functional everyday tasks.

 

Through these opportunities for community access, students utilize their skills, such as: communication, money management, time management, public safety, etc., to perform a variety of activities including: ordering a meal, using the bank or post office, using various modes of transportation, shopping, using the laundry facilities, and much more.

                                                       

The LABBB Vocational Department is looking forward to incorporating additional community access opportunities within its vocational experiences, in order to more fully develop and model what students will encounter as adults. Encouraging this level of community access, and skill development will best serve our students now, and as they transition beyond LABBB.  

 


SPRING COMES TO FOX HILL

by Patricia O'leary-Thorpe, Teacher, Fox Hill Elementary School

The frog eggs have arrived, the seeds are germinating, the flowers are planted. We are fortunate to be surrounded by conservation land at Fox Hill. Last fall, as we hiked the trails, we collected some of the seed pods that we found. Over the past few weeks, we have been exploring what the plants looked like after being dormant all winter. We have moss, chickerberry, milkweed and acorns. As we are trying to germinate the seeds and they begin to sprout, we will add them to our alphabet garden. Over the next few weeks we will start our compost piles and add to our garden. Today, Mrs. Johnson announced the plans for a school garden at Fox Hill. Looks like there will be plenty of opportunities to use our green 
thumbs.

 

Health Office Information

by Brenna Quinn and Amanda Cincotta, LABBB lead nurses 
 
A reminder that students are required to have a note from a physician/nurse practitioner before returning to school after hospitalization, surgery, visits to urgent care centers or emergency departments. It is important that LABBB nurses, physical therapists, and other staff members are made aware of activity restrictions or changes in the student's course of care following an illness or injury, in order to ensure their safety. Therefore, students may be excluded from attending school until proper documentation has been submitted following an injury or illness requiring hospitalization or medical care. There is a form on our website (http://labbb.com/documents/return_to_school_form.pdf) that providers can complete, or they can utilize their own forms. Please contact the Health Office with any questions.

 

 


LABBB RECREATION NEWS
 

by Paula Rizzo   


April was a great month for recreation and spring has finally come to LABBB. We were excited to finally have our after school Wednesday recreation groups going outside for their activities starting on April 2nd.

 

The LABBB Disney trip will be held on May 27-31.  We have 34 students going on the trip this year.   

  

Our Bedford Best Buddies is organizing a dance for Thurday, May 15, 7:00-9:00pm at Bedford High in the café.  Come join the fun. 

  

Always remember to follow @LABBBREC on Twitter


10th Annual Special Olympics

On Wednesday, April 30, it was raining in the morning for our opening ceremonies for the 10th annual Special Olympics. As soon as the opening ceremonies ended, it miraculously stopped raining just in time for the athletes to begin competing! It ended up being a great day for the LABBB community. We had 230 athletes competing, the most participating in our 10 years. We also had 230 best buddies coming out to join us for the event and work with our students.  The LABBB best
buddies come from Lexington, Arlington, Burlington and Bedford High Schools and Chenery middle school in Belmont and John Glenn middle school in Bedford.

Our relationship with the best buddies in our host buildings has grown and thrived! Best buddies from all of our high schools and middle schools come together in one place to join in this celebration of competition. We also want to say thank you to the Stars girls soccer team members for coming out to help as well. 20 members from this team showed up willing to help in anyway they could. 


We also had food and volunteers being provided by Watsons, the Lexington High School food service company. LABBB office staff were also selling coffee and donuts in the morning and pizza & water in the afternoon and Meat@Slims was serving BBQ for our spectators again this year.  


Cllick on the Youtube video below to watch the National Anthem by Rene Rancourt and Christina Wiley

10th Annual LABBB Special Olympics







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