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Children’s Education Center Students Expand Their Snack Cart

Children’s Education Center Students pose with their snack cartThe Children’s Education Center’s snack cart has evolved from being a cart that rolls from classroom to classroom selling sweet treats to a full-blown snack shop that sets up in the school’s lobby every Friday.

Transitional students in the Ed Center run two pre-vocational programs as part of their curriculum: the snack cart and the school store. Each year a different classroom is assigned to run either the school store or snack cart. Typically, the snack cart goes from classroom to classroom selling brownies and muffins to students and teachers.

The baked goods sold are made by the students in the model apartment, which is complete with a full kitchen, bedroom, closet, and laundry area. The model apartment is used as a simulator for students to work on important life skills like learning to cook and self-care.

On Friday, April 19, the students in Erica Eisenberg’s class, who are tasked with running the snack shop, set up their business in the lobby for the second time this year. She has eleven students in her class, all of whom “work”  in the snack shop. They break up into small groups and take on separate roles to help run the business.

“This experience helps them to relate to their peers, themselves, build confidence and prepare for future roles,” said Erica.

Around one o’clock, Teacher Assistant Tashira Catlyn helped three students set up the shop and stock the items for the 1:30 p.m. sale. Hemmer and Almandra were especially helpful, letting customers know of the available options including brownies, and blueberry or chocolate muffins.Children’s Education Center students with a sign they created for their snack cart that reads "Thank you!"

One by one, customers came to shop, and the students helped fill the orders, handle money, and bag purchases. The pride and ownership the students felt in running their shop was demonstrated in their interactions with the customers and each other. Almandra drew hearts and cute cats around the price list and a thank you sign with a smiley face that she placed by the register.

They profited $54 from Friday’s sale which they will reinvest into their business.

Erica collaborates with Curriculum Coordinator Jineen Leach to brainstorm how they can expand on these programs. Currently they are planning to add refreshing drinks and cookies to the summer menu.

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