MONTREAL, APRIL 19, 2011 – Parkdale School in St. Laurent held a weeklong celebration of diversity and individuality within the school community under the theme “We are special.”
Running from April 1 to April 6, the series of events were meant to highlight the fact that every child at Parkdale is unique and that through belief in oneself, they can achieve anything and everything. Individual themes were: What Makes Me Special (Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, Junior and Senior Autistic classes, Junior Language class and Cycle 1), What We Do Well (Cycle 2 and Senior Language class) and Different Challenges/Obstacles That We Have (Cycle 3).
This was a wonderful experience for all the children, staff, and parents who participated. It all began with opening ceremonies. Then, Pre-K and Cycle 1 classes presented their projects with the theme “What Makes Me Special.” On April 4, Cycles 2 and 3 presented their classroom projects with the themes “What We Do Well (Talents)” and “The Different Challenges And Obstacles That We Have.” On April 5, Luca “Lazylegz” Patuelli and his group Ill-Abilities visited. Luca is a world famous dancer who has two medical conditions: arthrogryposis and scoliosis. His inspiring life story and his motivational and educational presentation was both phenomenal and interactive, getting the students to dance and move.
The event ended with closing ceremonies on April 6. Francine Gravel, a visually impaired teacher of inspiration from the Philip E. Layton School of the EMSB, spoke. Children also lit candles for the seven values they learned during the week: Acceptance, Perseverance, Respect, Determination, Appreciation, Tolerance, and Self-Confidence. Throughout the week, children learned what makes each person an individual and how every one is special in their own way. They also learned about the many disabilities and challenges that people have and how they overcome them. This event was both unique and very educational for everyone.