Molly HowellMollyhowell@knights.ucf.edu April 27, 2012 EEX 2010
I went to visit and volunteer with a 19 year old boy with cerebral palsy. We did numerous exercises in the comfort of his own home with him to hopefully develop his muscles so he can crawl and hopefully learn to walk. It was an eye-opening experience for me to see how determined and incredible Kirk was.
Kirk was born a normal baby, but when placed next to his mother while in the hospital, there was a lack of oxygen to his brain. This caused him to develop with a condition known as Cerebral Palsy.
I went to visit Kirk every Tuesday during the semester, from 2:00-3:15, once a week, every week. We did a variety of different exercises with him to help strengthen his muscles and hopefully be able to crawl/walk one day.
One of my classes I was enrolled in had an opportunity to volunteer with Kirk, a child with cerebral palsy once a week for the entire semester, no absences, full commitment. In return, the volunteer wouldn’t have to do the research paper and would gain an incredible experience!
Kirk is a 19 year old white male who has cerebral palsy. He cannot speak or communicate. 1 person with disabilities was served from my service hours! I believe I made a large impact on his life! (And he made one on mine as well!)
My initial thoughts and feelings about this assignment was I was truly excited! I love working with students with special needs and I was very excited to start. I LOVED this experience and would do it again in a heartbeat! The experience that had the most impact on me was when I saw Kirk crawl for the first time. I couldn’t help it, tears came rolling down my cheek. He was so determined and wonderful!
I was completing this experience for EEX 2010 I understand physical disabilities, cultural diversity, and low incident disabilities better! Be sure to name the concept, explain it briefly (cite text where appropriate), and provide a concrete example from your service activities for each topic. In short, explain how your better understand thanks to your experiences. How will these experiences inform your future professional work?
Speech and Language impairments means a communication disorder, such asstuttering, impaired articulation, a language impairment, or a voice impairment,that adversely affects a childs educational performance. Kirk cannot communicate through speech to convey what he wants to say or do. He has a speech impairment in that he can’t communicate verbally except for moans and other sounds.
A physical impairment is any disability which limits the physical function of limbs or fine or gross motor ability, which includes Cerebral Palsy. Kirk has cerebral palsy and is confined to a wheelchair. We do exercises with him every Tuesday to improve his skills so he can learn to crawl and hopefully learn to walk.
My perspective on civic engagement is that it is a very important thing for everyone to get involved with, It serves the same purpose for everyone, those with disabilities and those without. It makes everyone who volunteers feel as if they are a part of something important and meaningful.
I believe service-learning is a wonderful way of learning for students because it gives them a first-hand account of teaching and guidance along the way. I will definitely be volunteering more often and become more involved in the future with volunteering. I would encourage teachers to incorporate service learning as a method of teaching because it is a great way to gain hands on experience.
I LOVED this experience, and I will definitely become more involved in volunteering in my community and trying to persuade my friends and family to volunteer as well!