Following Mary Pat

Visit to Woodrow Wilson Middle School’s Coffee Shop

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I had such a great time today at Woodrow Wilson Middle School. I visited the “coffee shop” run by Mr. Macchiaverna’s class, which is made up of children with autism and multiple learning disabilities. The children fondly refer to him as, Mr. Mac, and you can tell they have a real appreciation and respect for him as their teacher and friend. He came up with the idea to start this coffee shop with his class in order to teach them important life skills that extend beyond the classroom. This is a group of children whose disabilities sometimes make it difficult to have social interactions. However, what I saw today showed no sign of that being the case. These children were taking orders from the second someone walked into the home economics classroom, others were at the cash register giving out change, others were delivering coffee and snacks to other classrooms, some were making signs about the coffee shop and some were dispensing the coffee and tea. It was incredible to see how much this coffee shop was teaching the children about business, social interactions, and other life skills that we tend to take for granted. They were all so happy to be there, taking charge of the shop. And I must say, my tea was great!