HOUSTON – They danced to the tune “Sweet Georgia Brown,” they laughed at the antics of the team and there was a pizza at Chuck E. Cheeses thrown in to boot.
Houston Special Education students were treated to an evening with the Harlem Globetrotters who came to BancorpSouth Arena Feb. 26 and learned a few things as part of what they hope will become an annual field trip.
“We carried 15 kids and a big part of this was helping them learn how to conduct themselves in a crowd or at a big event,” said teacher Tracy Sullivan. “The things we take for granted such as how to stay safe in a crowd, how to be part of a group, how not to get lost, just come natural to most of us.”
Sullivan said a major part of every class and event involving her students is politeness, following directions and learning how to conduct themselves in public.
“We act different in public and say things different in public,” said Sullivan. “Our students are learning how to do that, too.”
Sullivan said getting special needs children included in regular school events and field trips is a key part of the special education curriculum at Houston School District.
“Our kids like to have fun and go places, too,” said Sullivan. “This mean a lot to our teachers and especially our students.”
Sullivan said tickets for the Harlem Globetrotters were donated by BancorpSouth.
“We got to go to Disney On Ice earlier this year and were told to apply for more events,” said Sullivan. “Karen Estes got busy and got us these ticket from BancorpSouth.”
Sullivan said the cost of the visit to Chuck E. Cheese was paid for by Houston businesses and individuals.
“Fox Law Firm, Pak-A-Pok, Grocer’s Pride, Byrne CPA, Houston Banking Center, BancorpSouth Houston, Birdie Burdine and Carole Byrne all donated,” said Sullivan. “Houston School District provided the transportation and made this a school supported function.”
Houston School District has two special needs classes – Sullivan’s class and Estes’ class for higher functioning students.
Houston special needs classes teaches children from Pre-K through age 21. Wednesday’s field trip was for kids sixth-grade and up.