How Lift Students Celebrate Each Other
Written By: Jessica Lemond, junior.
Throughout April, the LIFT class promoted Autism Awareness month in order to celebrate students on the Autism spectrum and educate people on what makes them different. For LIFT student Kurt Stout, April was “a really good time for me to speak up.” He explained, “Even though it has been a long time, Autism is still not understood by a lot of people.”
LIFT students and their mentors hung educational signs around the building. Junior mentor Brooke Black wrote up Autism facts to be read over the announcements during passing time. They held a bake sale to raise money for their program, where the students made their own treats to sell.
“Cooking in LIFT feels like a holiday with the family,” said Mrs. Huebler, a para educator in the LIFT classroom, “It’s messy and fun and action packed, and the outcome is always delicious!”
Mentor Olivia Foglesong added, “It’s a great team building activity for all of us because everyone gets to play a different part.”
“Lift is such a great program. I feel like I’ve got a second family and they truly deserve to be celebrated this month,” exclaimed mentor Katelynn Sparzinski.
To show solidarity, staff and students wore blue, the color that represents Autism, on Thursday, April 27. Teachers were also encouraged to participate in short activities organized by LIFT to promote Autism awareness with their classes. The lift class organized nine short activities for the school, including watching a short video and taking a quiz. Each time a teacher participated in an activity with their class, their name was entered in to a lottery.
Junior Angel Gutierrez said, “The activities helped me understand that there are many more people than I thought who is on an the Autism sprectrum.”
“Between the video and the quiz, the kids realized that autistic kids are just like themselves. They like the same things and have the same emotions… there’s not many differences. I also think they were surprised at how intelligent student on the Autistic spectrum are,” observed English teacher Libby Held.