Summer Camp activities can provide opportunities to teach skills in creative ways. One fun way was to have a pizza truck come to the Great Strides campus and give kids a chance to work on their basic food ordering skills. This was AL-C classroom (last year) teacher Melissa Prescott’s idea sparked by AL-A teacher Lauren Cricchio’s established outing day at Zaxby’s that she’s been doing for a while, typically on Tuesdays.
As in previous summers, this activity combined the AL group, including students from the AL-A and AL-C classrooms. As the teacher of the AL-C classroom, I wanted to incorporate what Lauren C. was already doing. She had instituted a Zaxby’s day in which the AL-A boys went into the community for lunch. Like previous summers, the students from AL-C joined.
The day of our Zaxby’s outing (typically Tuesday) meant that the students practiced how to order. After having time to practice with his or her therapist, each student lined up to order from the “cashier” within the classroom. The cashier was always one of the teachers or therapists in the room.
Once we felt comfortable, we would venture across the street to have lunch at Zaxby’s. This was clearly everyone’s favorite weekly activity, and the students participated without hesitation. “This type of engagement demonstrates the power of community outings,” said Prescott.
The same structure was used to prepare for Rocco’s with the AL summer camp attendees working on ordering menu items within the class. Copies of the menu were sent home to parents, so they could let us know what their child wanted to eat including ensuring the menu selection for those using devices were entered in the device. That way, these kids could also select items and exchange it with the food truck employees.
All of these skills were practiced in the classroom so when the students encountered this new community experience, they would be just as engaged as their weekly Zaxby’s outing.
Everyone was excited when Rocco’s Pizzeria truck pulled up, anticipating eating some ooey-gooey pizza slices. It was a hit! All of our students (and staff!) enjoyed this new lunch option. Not only did this activity create a new community outing for the AL group program, but the food truck employees were extremely patient with our students and made them feel special.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better learning opportunity for our kids,” said Prescott.
A “slice” of life in the best way!
AL-A Teacher Melissa Prescott, M.A., RBT