The Mini Beast on the Bay obstacle course is back for its second year and is even better! Last year, the ELBS faculty and students chose to initiate a Mini Beast as their way to participate in the Barber Beast on the Bay. It was such a great learning experience for our students that it has become an annual event. Through a team effort by teachers and therapists, our entire gymnasium is transformed into an adaptive obstacle course. These obstacles include a cannon ball relay race, a “beach encounter” where students walk, wheel, or crawl through the sand and other obstacles, a wet ‘n’ wild wave pool, and a mini tall ship where our students/crew can perform tasks such as raising the flag, steering the ship, and hoisting the anchor. These activities provide a multitude of opportunities for students to engage in social language with their peers and staff, request activities, practice turn taking, and function as a classroom team.
The Mini Beast on the Bay is a great event to close Autism Awareness Month and begin National Physical Fitness Month. The President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition(PCFSN) has recognized that the importance of children and adults with disabilities participating in physical activity and has established theI Can Do It, You Can Do It!(ICDI) program. You too can promote these efforts by:
– Incorporating exercise into your family’s busy lifestyle by making small changes, like taking a walk after dinner or going for a bike ride.
– Encourage teachers and administrators to make physical activity a part of every student’s day.
– Recruit youth leaders in the community to visit your school and talk to their peers about the importance of being active.
– Welcome children with disabilities into organized team sports.
– Visit this webpage for some basics of fitness , whether you are a senior citizen, millennial, teenager, or adolescent
I’d like to leave you with the following statement from Anthony Marc Robles, a PCFSN Council Member and champion for the involvement of children and adults with disabilities in physical fitness and activities:
“I am committed to empowering kids and adults with disabilities to experience freedom through sports and recreational activities. Sports are a gateway to meeting new friends, learning important life skills and improving your health. However, not all children and adults with disabilities have access and opportunities to enjoy being active like I did. And since individuals with disabilities have a greater need for regular physical activity and good nutrition to prevent obesity and other chronic conditions, it is even more important that schools and communities provide equal opportunities for all Americans to lead healthy, active lives.”