Despite the overcast skies and light drizzle, the Frenship soccer stadium was filled with smiles and laughter from more than 500 students, volunteers and educators during the 2019 Adaptive Field Day on Friday.
Hosted by Frenship ISD, approximately 350 students with disabilities from 14 school districts across Region 17 participated in the field day dedicated to providing inclusion and excitement through physical activities.
Adaptive PE teachers from Frenship ISD and Lubbock Cooper ISD put their minds together to create nearly two dozen stations that encouraged exercise such as modified relays and games like tug of war, hoop ring toss, volleyball, tennis ball launch, football dash, soccer dribble and much more.
“What is unique about each activity is how it has been modified so that either individually, with a peer, or assistance from a volunteer, all students can participate,” said Jill Jaquess, Frenship ISD Director of Special Education. “It was great to see the smiles and high fives and to hear the cheers and encouragement from the students.”
It’s more than just a field day. Taking a break from the classroom and donning team shirts, these middle and high school students had the chance to interact with their peers from other schools in a positive and energizing atmosphere.
“Events like this are very important to our students with disabilities both physically and emotionally,” said Aaron Tomlinson, Frenship ISD adaptive PE teacher. “Most of these students will never get to experience being involved in your regular sports at school, so we create events like this so they can feel successful, and so they can be a part of an awesome group of students.”
Tomlinson helped organize some of the games and says something as simple as one day of fun can significantly impact the students’ lives. “This is very important as it will help them discover activities that they may become interested in so they can live longer, healthier lives,” he said.
While the event only lasted two hours, the smiles lasted much longer. Students and staff are already looking forward to next year’s Adaptive Field day.