April 4, 2017
Children in the Montgomery County Infants and Toddlers Program (MCITP) will now have a new, cool way to get around, thanks to an innovative program and students from Thomas Edison High School of Technology.
The GoBabyGo Mobility Car Partnership Project was initiated by MCITP. Four therapists from two Infants and Toddlers site locations received $2,400 from the MCPS Educational Foundation to purchase the materials needed to modify six ride-on toy cars to allow toddlers with physical mobility limitations the opportunity to negotiate their play environment using the adapted and motorized cars.
The University of Delaware’s GoBabyGo Program provided the guidance to modify and retrofit the standard toy ride-on cars with specialized supportive seating and a five-inch diameter pressure button activation switch in the steering wheel, instead of an accelerator pedal. The adaptation allows young toddlers with physical mobility limitations the ability to “drive and move” by activating a battery-powered, single-push switch on the steering wheel.
The MCITP staff—physical therapists Sara Hammer, Sara Howard and Sharon Galitzer and occupational therapist DeAndrea Dennis—reached out to Edison principal Peter Cahall and Automotive Trades and Industry teacher Matthew Page about providing the students with the technological expertise to adapt the cars. They readily agreed.
All of the car modifications are being completed by three Edison students, junior Caitlin On and seniors Tyler Reed and Matthew Rollman.
The adapted motorized cars will be used in future early intervention sessions and always under the direct supervision of a physical or occupational therapist. “Driving lessons” will take place in community locations to foster a toddler’s mobility within a play environment alongside their typically developing peers.
Celebrating National Reading Month at Carderock Springs
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and Governor Larry Hogan met with students and staff at Carderock Springs Elementary School on March 23. Secretary DeVos and Governor Hogan toured the school and spent some time reading Dr. Seuss’s Oh, the Places You’ll Go to second graders.
Chevy Chase Elementary Recognized for Its Gifted and Talented Program
Chevy Chase Elementary School has been awarded the “Excellence in Gifted and Talented Education” or EGATE award, from the state of Maryland. It is one of only ten schools recognized this year. The EGATE award is the culmination of a 14 month-long application process.
Journalists Convene at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School for Discussion on the Press
Pushing back against efforts to erode the public trust in professional news media, Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School journalism students organized a town hall discussion on March 23, focusing on the topic, Don’t Mess with the Press. The discussion focused on what can be done to ensure that journalism is free, fair, independent and strong.
Guest speakers included a variety of print, radio and TV journalists and producers, including John Harwood, chief Washington correspondent for CNBC; Patrick Madden, a reporter at WAMU; Michael Viqueira, former White House correspondent for Al Jazeera America; Ruth Tam, producer for The Diane Rehm Show; Liza Hogan, a former senior producer for CNN; and Sheryl Stolberg, a reporter with The New York Times.
McAuliffe Elementary Holds Career Day
Students at S. Christa McAuliffe Elementary School in Germantown learned about various careers during the school’s annual Career Day. An assortment of visitors—from a police officer to scientist and social media consultant—talked to the students about their jobs.
Students in kindergarten through fifth grade participated. Older students were required to be responsible for their own learning by initiating conversations with the professionals.