E.R. Dickson School

Categories:Testimonials
Dear ASF Foundation and the WCFO Program,
Hello, my name is Cheryl Johnston and I am the Physical Education teacher at E. R. Dickson School in Mobile, Al..  I would like to share with you just a little bit about myself.  This is my 26th year of teaching.  For twenty years I taught Adapted Physical Education at Augusta Evans Special School, ages K-21.  I was also the Adapted P.E. evaluator for Mobile County Public Schools System.  Over the last 6 years I have taught Physical Education at Gilliard Elementary School and am presently at E.R. Dickson Elementary School.
I want to say thank you for the WCFO program.  I began this program when it was first introduced in Mobile County.  My students enjoy the Wii, especially the Just Dance series.  They even ask to do it on the days that it is not scheduled.  I love the fact that I can use it for all of the grade levels but my absolute favorite thing about it is how my Special Education students respond to it.
The Wii has opened up a brand new world to my special needs students.

The Wii has opened up a brand new world to my special needs students.

My  cerebral palsy students use the Wii to improve their fine motor skills and eye-hand coordination by having to grasp and move the controls along with the action on the screen.  My autistic students are fascinated by the colors, the movement and even the music.  My students who are wheelchair-bound love to move along with the others and enjoy getting out of their chairs to join  with other regular students who are also stretching. I also have a student who is limited in her activities because of a brain tumor who will use the Wii to the best of her ability. I have seen an overall improvement in their gross motor, fine motor, eye-hand coordination, eye-foot coordination, and self-esteem. 

I have seen an overall improvement in their gross motor, fine motor, eye-hand coordination, eye-foot coordination, and self-esteem.

Each year selected 5th grade students get to participate in a Maypole/dance.  I always choose a song from one of the Just Dance videos for our dance.  My special needs students are now participating in our dance because they can watch the video and learn the dance during class and on their own.   Their self-esteem is greatly improved and they love being a part of the 5th grade.
We also use the Wii as a behavior incentive for our special needs students.  They earn “good behavior” points which allows them to use the Wii and to pick the video of their choice.  We have seen a tremendous increase in good behavior in our special needs students.
Thank you so much for the WCFO program,
Cheryl Johnston

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