SEED Brings Disabilities Awareness to Dover High School
The Seacoast Educational Endowment for Dover (SEED), a non-profit organization founded to foster teacher creativity and fund new learning initiatives within Dover district schools, recently awarded Dover High School teacher, MJ Hippern a grant to bring the Northeast Passage Disabilities Awareness Program to Dover High School (DHS) physical education and wellness classes.
This experiential learning program was delivered to DHS wellness classes fromJanuary through June of this past year. The goal of the program is to give students, teachers and administrators the tools to discuss and explore the similarities we all share, regardless of ability. Students were given opportunities toplay a variety of indoor wheelchair sports/games, participate in similarity discussions and reflect on their experience and research findings.
According to the Northeast Passages website, the program allows students to see that people with disabilities are an important part of our society and should be embraced and understood. DHS Student feedback was overwhelmingly positive. “The students said they ‘learned more with this hands-on exercise’ than they ever could have by simply reading about disabilities,” said Hippern. “Students felt this was one of the most valuable activities done all school year.” Other schools in the district have raised funds to bring this similarity program to their curriculum offerings. “We’re at work now, figuring out how to add this to our curriculum next year,” added Hippern.