One of the wonderful things about AGS is the ability of our teachers to adapt lessons and to teach outside of the box. We know that everyone around us can teach us something new. That is exactly what Mrs. Jaime Saunders recognized in her 7th grade English class as students were starting a new unit on The Miracle Worker, a novel about Helen Keller. Mrs. Saunders decided to step aside and learn from her student, as she knew that one particular student would have a different view and connection with the story.
Raveena is a student in this class who was born blind, and Mrs. Saunders gave her the opportunity to teach an entire class period during this unit of study. Raveena had the freedom to teach her peers anything she wanted them to know about her life. She embraced this opportunity and decided to teach the class about empathy. This would help students put themselves in the shoes of both Raveena and Helen Keller. She showed the other students what it is like to do daily tasks if you cannot see. Students had to read using Braille, had to count money, unzip jackets, and rely on their other senses to complete tasks all while blindfolded. Although these tasks are challenging, and most of us will never know the true challenges that Raveena faces daily, she demonstrated that this inconvenience (as she calls it) will not stop her or others from leading a fulfilling life.
Raveena is a true portrait of an AGS student. She is a leader; she is willing to educate anyone who has questions about her daily life; and she is smart, outgoing, brave, and determined. She leads announcements during assemblies, teaches class, and is always willing to help others. We are so lucky to have Raveena here at AGS. With all of the incredible characteristics she possesses, we know that the sky is the limit for her. Her positive and generous personality is contagious. Spend five minutes with her, and your life will be changed forever.
Raveena, thank you for sharing your story with all of us. Thank you for helping us be more inclusive to those with disabilities. Please never stop sharing your story and who you are with the world because you are one of a kind.