What’s new in the Links classroom

The+6th+hour+Links+class++with+their+student+helpers.
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What’s new in the Links classroom

The 6th hour Links class  with their student helpers.

The 6th hour Links class with their student helpers.

Halsey Smith

The 6th hour Links class with their student helpers.

Halsey Smith

Halsey Smith

The 6th hour Links class with their student helpers.

Nora Verdier, Multimedia Manager

We all know the Links students as the friendly faces we see in the hallways and often help satisfy our Pop Tart cravings, but that is only a fraction of the exciting activities they have been doing so far this year.

Links is a class designed for students with disabilities and for other students to help in the classroom. They have partaken in a multitude of fun, educational activities, including going to the gym and playing games such as Kickball and Steal the Bacon, cooking, and singing karaoke. In addition, other students help Links classmates through practicing reading and building math skills.

“We do a lot of fun activities that involve our classmates to think hard, creating skills they can use outside of school,” Chase Fisher ‘19 said.

Links students also have the opportunity to sell snacks between periods, work at one of the local restaurants during the Links class hour, and go out to lunch with students who help in the Links classroom.

“This year, we have focused a lot on each of the student’s individual challenges which has made a huge impact on the classroom,” Livvie Berger ‘19 said.

Throughout the school year, the Links class has been focusing on cultivating inclusivity within the classroom and supporting others with differences.

“One exciting change this year is that we have been able to have Links students support students in other classrooms in addition to the Links classroom. We know inclusion benefits all our students and makes EGRHS a better place for everyone to learn and grow,” Stephane Diepstra, the school social worker, said.  

As of this year, the Links class has also been holding monthly meetings during lunch to discuss ways in which they can improve the Links program here at EGRHS.

In these meetings, students are able to “learn more about inclusion and supporting students with various differences as well as discuss ways to make the program more impactful for students and for our school,” Diepstra said.

Links students are able to build social and critical thinking skills during class hours, but they can also expand these skills through after-school activities, including attending EGRHS basketball and hockey games, bowling, watching movies, and tubing at Cannonsburg. Classmates who help with Links students are encouraged to bring friends to further build Links students’ social skills and to simply have fun, despite any of the Links students’ differences.

“My favorite part about the class is interacting with the students,” Berger said. “They are always having fun and it is a great way for everyone to connect.”

Both Links students and other classmates are able to learn from each other and form friendships that last throughout high school.

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