MI Coffee Carts Expand Student Life Skills

MI Coffee Carts Expand Student Life Skills
Coffee and Cookie CartMason Intermediate Intervention Specialist Jessica Cassin's idea to expand student life skills - such as communication, money exchange, and fine motor skills - through "Cassin's Coffee and Cookie Cart" at MI has quickly become a Friday favorite for staff.

"As my students get older and their skills advance, I wanted them to apply what they have learned to a real world scenario," explained Cassin. "Before our Friday cart, we go to Kroger every Wednesday to buy more product to keep our project running. Students also practice great skills at the grocery. It gives them a sense of ownership to the project as well."

Teachers and staff sign-up online to have the students stop by their room with the coffee cart. Once the spots are full, and they always are within minutes, Cassin divides the rooms and has four students running the carts, two students per cart from 10:00-10:40am.

"The students know this is their job and they need to put on their work aprons that say Cassin's Kids on them to start their job," added Cassin. "They load up the cart and put the signs on the front.

Currently the carts include coffee and cookies, and there is talk of adding other drinks and seasonal treats to the carts. The students are in charge of pushing the cart, engaging with staff buying treats off the cart, exchanging the money, and giving them the correct amount of change in return.

"My students light up when it is time to do the coffee cart! It is awesome to see them apply their skills and have fun at the same time," shared Cassin. "They love interacting with the staff and students and being able to show off their skills. It is truly amazing to watch the kids in action, and to see their potential and watch them shine!"

MI staff also enjoys interacting with the students. It's a way for students to engage with teachers who they may have never met. The sign up sheet is always full and people are wanting more!

"My hopes for this project is to keep it growing and have my students be engaged within our school community. I want my students to feel a part of the school just like any other student," explained Cassin. "This project helps us work on inclusive excellence in our building by providing our students an appropriate way to grow and learn."
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