April 2017

          A LABBB Collaborative  Newsletter

    Sharing best practices for promoting inclusive opportunities       for  students with special needs 

In This Issue
Message from the Executive Director
Patric Barbieri
Finally Arriving: Backwards  Design Mapping for Successful Outcomes for Students with Special Needs. 
Your journey begins in Massachusetts, and your destination is the wine vineyards of Willamette, Oregon. Having meticulously mapped out your route, you get into your car, climb onto your motorcycle, or board whatever means of transportation you choose, and you head west. You have an idea of where you are going, and others have done it before, but you are starting your own adventure and taking your own route.
After a long week of traveling, getting lost, panicking, feeling alone, and going through strange places, you finally arrive. You have struggled, but you have also encountered some beautiful sights  and met some wonderful people. Some of those people helped guide you when you said to them, "I am lost. What is the best route to Willamette from here?" Most of them had never been there, but they had heard of it, and they did their best to help. They had been asked before by many travelers heading to the same destination and shared what they had learned. 
On your ride home, you think to yourself,  "I will take this journey again. Now I know what it is like to arrive at my destination - I have experienced it - but next time I will be more prepared."   You think about how you will   do the trip differently -the better routes you will take, the supplies you will pack, and the people you will talk to before you leave. Your anxiety will be better controlled. In preparation for your second trip, who else will you ask for advice? What are the important questions you will ask them? 
The journey of special education may feel something like this for parents, except there is only one opportunity to arrive at age 22. There are so many unknowns, so many possible roads, so many different experiences, perceptions, philosophies. It is overwhelming. The intent of most parents is to take it all in and learn along the way, but they have never been on this trip before. This is their first time. They have not arrived yet. Fortunately, by asking the right questions, all of us can get more information about what the future will be like. We can talk to people who have already arrived and ask,  "What would you do differently on this journey?"
If I were to design a program for aspiring special educators and parents, the first required class would be "Backwards Design Mapping for Successful Outcomes for Students with Special Needs."  Students would not spend one day in a classroom watching PowerPoint presentations about teaching pedagogy or learning "theory." They would go right out and experience and observe what skills they should be teaching. They would volunteer in a day-hab  as part of their field experience. They would be job coaches and work in a group-home living environment, on both day shifts and overnights. They would research and visit colleges that offer programs for students with special needs. Lastly, they would locate and observe recreational activities for students with special needs in many different places. The point is that we need to begin with the end in mind when we are developing a curriculum. What the future special educators in my hypothetical program would learn and see directly are the skills all our students will need to succeed in being as independent as possible post-22. 
In my "Backwards Design Mapping" course, we would ask questions of graduates who are post-22, former students who graduated 5, 10, 15, 20 years ago. We would ask: "What do you do every day? Do you work? How many hours? What do you do for fun? Who are your friends? Tell me about the community where you live." Ultimately, we would be investigating the skills they need to lead a happy, successful life. The only way to get that information is by observing and experiencing what our graduates are doing right now. What skills do they have that make it possible?
As parents, you have a map for your child that shows many, many possible routes from ages 3 to 22. When your child turns 22, you will have arrived, so do not wait to ask the most important questions: "Where do I go from here? What options do we have? Tell me about graduates who are successful and why." When 22 arrives, your map will suddenly go from hundreds of routes to only a few. 
We tend to focus our efforts developmentally, year by year, without considering the options or realities of post-22 life. I am not talking about developing a transition plan or writing a vision statement in an IEP.  We are here to guide you. We care about outcomes, not just at 22, but many years after. Discuss the possibilities and talk about what our graduates are doing. Use this information to guide you on this journey. 
There are many maps and many routes you can choose from. I am suggesting you choose a map and a route with a vision that begins with the end in mind.
LABBB "Hollywood" Prom 
April 13, 2017
The LABBB Prom was held on Thursday, April 13, at the Burlington Marriott. The Hollywood themed prom was spectacular event which began with a red carpet walk. 

Thank you to Jeanne Bono, Prom Coordinator, and to the prom committee for organizing this event and for all their hard work in making this such a wonderful experience for everyone. 

Below are two slide shows you can view. We will be sharing more pictures in the next few weeks. 

As you will see from the pictures the LABBB Tribe is not shy in front of a camera!

The Red Carpet Walk Pictures Click on image below to view

Hollywood Prom Pictures: Click on Image below to view

By: Jessica Niland
After finishing the novel Frindle By Andrew Clements, the students of room 111 got creative and made up their own words. The Chenery students created new words for common things such as pizza, Peppa Pig, a car, and silly putty. The students used adjectives to describe their new words and drew pictures to help each other figure out what they were describing. New words included " kitely", "nottah", "moonship", and "stick gooey wooey". The students had a blast laughing at the the nonesense words and trying to guess what each other's words meant.
The students did a phenomenal job using their higher order thinking skills by taking concepts from the novel and putting their own creativity into it. We were amazed at the students' abilities to think outside the box and use prior knowledge to make this lesson so fun and engaging!

"The Magician's Hat"
By: Keith Muise & Jessica Stuart
On March 23, the Butler SEL committee, inspired by Alyssa Greene, had a very special guest speak to the Butler School community. Malcolm Mitchell, New England Patriot, Super Bowl LI champion, and passionate reader, spoke to Butler's students about the "magic" of reading. He shared with the audience his inspirational story of his childhood struggles to read, which eventually ended with his discovery of reading's "magic". Malcolm Mitchell, now an avid reader and author of The Magician's Hat, has created "Read With Malcolm" to promote literacy in New England's youth. As part of Malcolm Mitchell's Read Across New England initiative, he shared his story and book with the entirety of Butler's student population. During Malcolm's read-aloud, students followed along in their personal copies of The Magician's Hat.  

Recreation News and Events
By: Paula Rizzo, Integration and Recreation Coordinator
2017 LABBB Staff vs. Students Basketball Game  

March was  a busy month for Recreation. First, we had the Staff vs. Students Basketball Game. The students pulled ahead to get the win, but it really didn't matter who won. It was about the fun, challenge, camaraderie, and energy that were in the Lexington High School gym that night. 

LABBB Basketball Team: 2017 Champions!

The LABBB Basketball Team A, won the Championship game of the GBBL Tournament. They celebrated the win with Teams B and C at a Banquet luncheon at Via Lago's. 



2017 Disney Trip

Our annual Disney trip was also in March. We had great weather for fun in the parks, including rides, swimming, and meeting new friends. We had dinner In Italy on the water with fireworks after dinner, character dinners at Crystal Palace in Magic Kingdom, Chef Mickey's at Contemporary Resort, and a dinner at the Hoop Dee Doo Review. See photos below.

Tuesday and Thursday Bowling groups have started again along with Wednesday Recreation.
Special Olympics is coming up on May 3rd. All registration forms should have been received by March 30th for all athletes.
We have 2 new collaborations, one with Waypoint Adventures and one with TILL:
Waypoint Adventures took LABBB students Rock Climbing and will be doing a kayaking trip in June with more rock climbing groups in October. 

We also have a joint trip with TILL as we travel to Ireland together in June. 

LABBB has a two night camping trip to Maine coming up in June as well.
Stay tuned for more updates later this year.
Always remember to follow @LABBBREC on Twitter

Save The Dates

April 13: LABBB Prom at the Burlington Marriott
April 27: LABBB Glow Golf Fundraiser at Stone Meadow in Lexington.
May 3: Special Olympics, Rene Rancourt is ready and looking forward to it. 

Signs of Spring at Memorial
By: Ellen Roane
If you're looking for some signs of Spring, head on over to Room 115 at Burlington Memorial!   We started our unit on Plants at the beginning of March, with very little cooperation from Mother Nature. We learned all about what is and is not a plant, parts of plants, the plant life cycle, what plants need to grow, and expanded our plant related vocabulary. We enjoyed learning through worksheets, Scholastic interactive videos and newsletters, Adapted Books, library books, Peppa Pig gardening videos (a big hit in our class!), file folder games, and 3-D flower art projects! We also rolled up or sleeves and got our hands a little dirty by starting lima bean plants and also dividing up our overgrown spider plant and transplanting it into 4 new plants with lots of fresh soil (much needed). We even related our weekly cooking activities to our theme and made "dirt/worm" cups, planted "candy seeds" in "brownie" soil and even learned to make a salad! So if you're looking for Spring-stop on by!

LABBB Podcast
Berklee Institute for Arts Education and Special Needs
  We want to share a very exciting new opportunity for students with special needs.We feel that this is an important part of our students' education. 

LABBB has a set of Core values and one of them is to promote more Music, Arts and Theater.  

Special Needs Arts Program, Inc.(SNAP)
LABBB Fundraiser: Glow Golf
Flyers will be out in the mail soon. If anyone is interested in playing, please email  prizzo@LABBB.net  to sign up. You can sign up as a foursome or individually.  Spaces will go quickly. 

Parent Resources
  • School Cancellation Policy:
    All LABBB programs follow the school cancellations in their respective towns.

Recreation Links  

(FNFC) Friday Night Fun Club, Bedford, Ann Seamans: AnnSeamans@aol.com or 781-275-8381
(MMArc) Minute Man Arc Afternoon Recreation Afternoon Recreation & Friday Nights (16+yrs), Darcie Heller: dheller@minutemanarc.org or C:978-201-2481/W: 978-287-7936 

(TILL) Toward Independent Living & Learning Travel:  Springboard Club, Dedham, high independence, Dale Belcher: Dale.Belcher@tillinc.org or 781-302-4619 (RARA) Recreational Adult Resource Association, Lowell Contact: Office@RARAagency.org or 978-453-5598 
Riverside Community Care: DDS Family Support Center, Woburn Kaley Stoner: kstoner@riversidecc.org or 781-686-6073  Lifelinks - DDS Family Support Center, Chelmsford, Rachel Ward Sullivan: wardsullivan@lifelinksinc.net or 978-349-3040  *verify current + open to public 

Greater Marlborough Programs Inc - Social & Recreation (DDS Family Support), Marlborough Jim Karami: Jim@gmpinc.org or 508-485-4227 ext. 1006 
Echo Enrichment, Burlington, Mary Ann Perreira,echonews@echoenrichment.com or 781-640-9351 
Trips R Us, Framingham, Mike Graham: mike@tripsrus.org or 508-405-0999 

Alternative Leisure (ALCS), Bedford, Drew Bilillies: alctrips@aol.com or 781-275-0023 
Music Makes Me Happy Chorus, Lexington, Marsha Martin: Marsha@mmmh-singers.org 
Concord Recreation, Anna Wood: awood@concordma.

Sudbury Therapeutic Recreation, Amber Forbes: ForbesA@sudbury.ma.us or 978-639-3257 

Belmont (SPORT) Special Programs Heidi Barbiero:  recreation@belmont-ma.gov  or 617-993-2760 

(SNAP) Special Needs Arts Program Chorus & Art, Lexington Contact: info@snaparts.org or 781-325-8025

(GWArc) Greater Waltham Arc Recreation/Plus: Mike Mullins: Recreation@gwarc.org or 781-899-1344 x4120  Newton Therapeutic Recreation w/ Newton Athletes Unlimited, NewtonMark Kelly: mkelly@newtonma.gov or 617-796-1527 
Kids in Disability Sports (K.I.D.S.), Lowell, Info: info@kidsinc.us or 866-712-7799 
Access Sport America, Acton, BettyMiller: Betty@accessportamerica.org
Burlington Therapeutic Recreation, Burlington, Laurel Rossiter:
CTRS@burlington.org, 781-270-1937

Contacts and Social Media