Laughter rings through the halls of The Day School at The Children’s Institute of Pittsburgh. FUN, after all, is a core value. Amiyr Mack, age 13, loves to be a source of the merriment.
“Amiyr is such a character,” chuckles teacher Elisa Stanley, who recently retired from The Day School. “He’s quite the jokester and really enjoys social interactions, especially with the teachers and therapists. Because Amiyr is highly motivated and engaged in a wide variety of learning activities, he has been able to achieve many goals during his years at The Day School.”
“Every school day is a good day for Amiyr,” his mother Brittany explains. “He’s excited every morning to go, and he’s still excited in the afternoons when he tells me all about his day. The Day School is a special place, and Amiyr excels there.”
Amiyr, an eighth grader, was born with cerebral palsy. At The Day School, multiple disabilities support classrooms like Amiyr’s are designed to help students with complex needs meet individualized goals. He benefits from the small class size and comprehensive academic instruction that are integrated with functional life skills. Physical, occupational, speech, and behavioral therapies strengthen his abilities, as does access to advanced technology.
During class time, Amiyr builds vocabulary and comprehension of written material through a research-based curriculum designed to teach students with disabilities to read. He is also learning simple addition and working on behavioral goals like good listening and following directions. He especially loves The Day School’s adapted physical education and music class.
“Team effort. These are the two best words to describe how The Day School works,” Elisa Stanley describes. “We have one focus – the child. Together with his mom, The Day School team sets specific goals for Amiyr and works collaboratively to encourage him to meet those goals. For instance, Amiyr consistently achieves new reading goals. We teach reading comprehension with a secondary focus on vocabulary, and Amiyr’s speech therapist practices vocabulary regularly. Mom reinforces both of these areas with him at home. Team effort!”
“Amiyr is a good communicator,” Brittany concludes. “He’s able to clearly express his wants and needs, he’s kind to his school friends, and he loves to be the entertainer in our family. Every day I am thankful that I made the decision to send Amiyr to The Day School.”
For more information about how The Day School can help your student, please visit amazingkids.org/educational-services.