Monday, March 31, 2014

Great ideas to steal from Max's school

Max stood in front of the portrait on the wall, gazing in awe. This is because it was a picture of him, with washes of purple, no less. Max had participated in an Art Mentorship Program at his school, now in its second year. Nine artists from a local studio did a series of hands-on workshops with kids, and we attended the opening reception Saturday night. This totally captures Max, from his chub-licious cheeks to his sweet smile. He and the artist did it together.

The program even inspired him to try colors other than purple

The look of pride on the kids' and parents' faces in the gallery was amazing, and the artists were all  genuinely thrilled, too. Win-win. The school's Development Department organized the progam, but it's something an art teacher or even the PTA could put together.

This is one of the many things I love about Max's school: How they think outside the box to open up kid's minds. Something else great coming up: Max came home with this flier the other day. They're going to have the kids do volunteer work in the fall.

Max picked the projects he's most interested in. "MAX! You have to GIVE out the food, not EAT it!" Sabrina informed him.

I've always had it in back of my head to find volunteer work for Max, but aside from donating clothes to local shelters, we haven't done anything organized. Our kids are so used to receiving help from us, therapists and the medical experts in their lives. How empowering would it be for them to be able to help others? 

Please, share great programs happening at your kids' schools—the more ideas, the better for our kids.


  1. Beautiful portrait!

    I have commented before. I live in India and foster 8 children with special needs through Sarah's Covenant Homes. My blog is and the website is

    Your comment on Max helping others got me thinking that it would be so great if we could set something up between the kids! 4 of my 8 have cerebral palsy as well. 1 has spina bifida and 3 are blind and have autism. They are amazing... Max too!! :)


    1. Nikki, so love the idea of figuring out ways to have the kids help each other. I think I need to try that with my TWO!

  2. Once, I volunteered at a food pantry because my school has a service event. It was awful because everyone started throwing the cans and one hit me in the face. I told them to stop throwing the cans, but no one would listen. Even one of the teachers justified the can throwing by saying something along the lines of "It's a service event. Now stop being selfish and serve." After someone accidentally dropped and broke a can and bean juice leaked on the floor, everyone stopped throwing the cans. This is an example of community service gone wrong.

    1. I'll say! Hope you found some community service to do with no risk of bodily harm.

  3. I started a "Loose Change Drive" at my son's elementary school in 2011 and would have been happy if we raised $50. We raised a little over $100. In 2012, the school raised $258. This year the goal is $300! 100% of what we collect goes to a local charity. I purchased containers from the local dollar store and each classroom collects coins and then the two special education classrooms (my son is in one of them) helps count the coins. My high school daughter makes posters and she and I roll the coins (the wrappers are donated by a local bank). Now that my little guy is moving up to middle school, it is something I hope will continue for many years to come!!!!

  4. Volunteering is a massively good idea! You are so right about disabled kids being used to being helped. I think learning that they can help others will also help with forming friendships that are mutual and reciprocal.


Thanks for sharing!

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