November 24th, 2018
The last three weeks have been busy in literacy! Clients began this part of the semester by studying the history of Remembrance Day, and the poem “In Flanders Fields”, which moved us nicely into preparing for our Remembrance Day ceremony. On November 8th, after laying the Client-made wreath at the cenotaph at Victoria Park, each Client read a piece of “In Flanders Fields” to close out the ceremony. Everyone did a wonderful job with their parts, and showed great respect for those who fought so hard for our freedom.
The following week, Clients studied peace and what it means to them. To aim for a bit of a different perspective, each Client was asked to think about peace in terms of the five senses, and some lovely ideas were shared. “Peace smells like lemons”, “peace sounds like the ocean”, “peace tastes like vanilla ice cream”, to name but a few.
Finally, Clients have spent this past week preparing for our Celebration Day next week. Invitations went home on Wednesday, so if you haven’t seen them yet, please ask about them!
Math, Technology and DPA
For the final part of the "Rights and Freedoms" themed semester, the Clients looked at money. We connected the checkmarks we have been receiving to the coins they are translated into, and how this right to work and earn a reward is our own to realise. With less work, or less diversity of work, comes less regard for our efforts, but an encouraging word or a smile is always quickly available for doing our best!
We studied the quarters and dollars we are earning, and went through practical scenarios to show spending, saving and possibly even donating. We are finalizing the last week with getting the roles for The Store sorted, and categorizing our products, as well as pricing them.
Technology and DPA have been going well. The Clients are awesome with learning new games that can be difficult sometimes! They are also amazing with their ability to quiet down in a meditation session, then be very excited while doing some cup bowling.
Technology is going well. For this Fall Semester, managing and assisting Clients with the iPads have prompted some to learn their charging and cleanliness maintenance as well as placing the iPads back in their proper place for safety. More official lessons to look forward to during the Winter Semester!
During the last few weeks of science for this semester, we have looked more closely at specific nutrients in our foods. We have discussed sugar, protein, and calcium; how much our bodies need, why our bodies need them, and the types of foods that contain them. Clients have been able to learn more about the foods that they eat regularly, and also work on their observation and numeracy skills in the process. In addition to practicing life skills including reading grocery flyers and nutrition labels, we have also had a lot of hands-on exploration. Highlights from the past few weeks include the ‘naked egg’ and ‘magic milk’ experiments. Our visit from the Dairy Farmers of Ontario was a great way to revisit all of the nutrition facts we have learned throughout the semester.
How Science is influenced by our Yearly Theme of “Rights and Responsibilities”!
Nutrition is so relevant to the semester’s focus on ‘ourselves’ because all of our bodies require food. Learning about nutrition teaches us how to properly care for our bodies and make educated healthy choices. Through these lessons in science, we are able to recognize ways in which we are all similar (the necessity of food) but also the ways in which we are unique as individuals (we all have different food preferences and acquire nutrients in various ways). The ‘eat a rainbow’ wall has been a great way to illustrate and reinforce all of the healthy choices clients have made throughout the semester.
We have been on an incredible journey in Art on this latter part of the Fall Semester. Defending our “Rights and Freedoms” through the sacrifices made by Veterans 100 years ago and since, our appreciation for Remembrance Day was celebrated with honour by the beautiful poppy art-work. Together we created a stunning, hand-crafted poppy wreath that was then laid at the cenotaph in Victoria Park.
“Peace” was our next focus as we painted ‘groovy’ Peace Signs to celebrate all the gifts we enjoy! This week we are starting to get ready for Christmas with brilliant mosaic wreathes and creative chalk designs. As we prepare for our “Celebration Day” next Thursday, there is an enormous sense of joy!
Week 7 began with a discussion on “Remembrance Day”. Each individual contributed their thoughts and feelings on the importance of ‘Remembering’. They were all very interested and had a lot to share.
Creating a word-web using the word “Peace”, Clients wrote down words they associated with Peace. Their pages were full!
Week 8 continued with what Peace meant to the Clients; ‘how’ they felt; ‘what’ they saw and heard when they closed their eyes. We also discussed things that can ruin Peace. Tracing their hands, they wrote peaceful words, then decorated and glued them to form a wreathe. They were very proud to present their Word-Hand Wreathe to other Staff at the end of the day!
Week 9 concluded with peoples’ hurt feelings. Wrinkling up a paper heart they then tried to flatten out all the “scars” left behind afterwards. It showed them visually that, after feelings are hurt you may still remember and that your heart may not be the same. There was some elaborate story sharing at this time! Talking about your hurt feelings may help make your heart happy again.
Clients clearly know the importance of being a kind person, to always be aware of how others may feel and “To be the best I can be!” They then created a large bouquet of flowers by tracing their hands and printing kind words on them. Doing things together with kindness leaves no one left alone to handle things by themselves. You can always ask for help. The bouquet turned out beautifully!
Everyone at Prep to Step-Up sends a grateful “Thank You” to all our participants within our great big Circle.
We hope that you’ve enjoyed all that the Newsletter has brought you in words and photos from the hard-working efforts of our Clients and Staff!
It is our heart-felt wish that you all feel at home here at Prep to Step-Up! Have a safe and joyous holiday and we’ll see you in the New Year!
A Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays to all!