By Jennifer Water – Special Ed Paraprofessional, Orchard Hills Elementary
The two special education units at Orchard Hills Elementary in Santaquin, have the unique opportunity of learning in the community twice a month. These trips are called Community Based Instruction or CBI’s.
The unit teachers Mrs. Owen and Mrs. Waters plan activities based on their students needs and then set up these bi-monthly trips. This
year the students have the opportunity to participate in Adaptive Aquatics and Gym Kids at Brigham Young University. Students are paired with a college buddy, and they participate in Aquatics or various activities in the Gym. This provides great opportunitiesthat not only serve our students motor development needs, but their needs for speech and social interaction.
After going to BYU our students make a stop at either the Provo Town Center or the North Park in Spanish Fork to eat their lunch, then it is on to our last stop in Payson. Most of our students will attend either Payson Jr. High, or Mt. Nebo Jr. High when they are 7th graders. We have set up stops at both of these Jr. High’s so that our students have the opportunity to get to know the school, teachers, and fellow students that they will go to when they are in Jr. High.
Mrs. Owen’s students go to one Jr. High one week out of the month and Mrs. Waters’ students to the other, and then we switch the next time we go out on CBI’s. The Jr. High students plan activities to help our students interact with them and our students bring books that they have made so that they can read or be read to. We love our Community Based Instruction time, and are thankful for the drivers, teachers, and volunteers who make it all possible.