[MR] Demo at Margaret Brent School in PG (Back To The Middle Ages)

Victoria Wank via Atlantia atlantia at seahorse.atlantia.sca.org
Tue Mar 1 09:27:57 PST 2016

Greetings to you on this lovely day from Lady Rebekkah Samuel! 
I have asked the baronies in Maryland to help Bright Hills and Storvik present a sensory input experience for the students of the Margaret Brent School in New Carrollton, MD. I extend the invitation to ANYONE in Atlantia to help us. The date of the demo is March 10, 2016. I have met with our acting principal, assistant principal, and the chair of the Special Events committee to iron out some details. We REALLY need to know the names of those gentles who can come to the school and spend the day with our special students. We need anything that can be touched, seen, heard, and tasted. Even if you can't come in person, you can have someone bring it for you. It is most important to know who will be coming due to increased security measures designed to keep all students safe. In addition, I need to know, so that I can get pictures for vocabulary. I thank you in advance and look forward to a special day! 

The current set-up of the demo space is as follows: 

1. The cafeteria will be divided into 2 sections. One is for 6-7 tables with displays that can be seen, touched and tasted. The other will be for dancing. Display tables will feature items from similar categories,i.e., fiber arts, scrolls, embroidery, armor, beading, quilling. We will also have space for a loom and musicians. Storvik proposed having a photo area where students can have their picture taken "wearing" garb. 

2. The elementary school students will come in from 10:30-12 , in 2 waves: MOVE students (wheelchairs) and then the students with autism. The secondary school will come in from 1:30-3 , also in the same 2 waves as elementary. 

3. All participants MUST sign in at the main office and receive a name tag. You must bring your driver's license or state ID with you. 

4. If you have heavy and/or bulky stuff to bring, you can drop it off in front of the school and go park. There is parking space available below the main parking lot and at the library next door. If you do need to drop off stuff, please arrive by 9am. After that, the buses start to arrive, and you won't be able to come down until they leave (usually by 10 or so). 

5. If you do make things for the students to taste, all ingredients MUST be listed, so that we avoid allergic reactions. NO NUTS! Anything mushy and sweet, bread, and non-alcoholic beverages (Sekanjubin). 

I am including the original announcement in this email, so you can get ideas about what you can offer. We always need pageantry (garb, banners, etc.)!! 

Unto the good gentles of Atlantia does Lady Rebekkah Samuel send greetings! 

Before you read the announcement below, let me introduce my modern self to you. My name is Victoria Wank. I work as a Speech-Language Pathologist at The Margaret Brent Regional Center in New Carrolton, MD. This is a school within the Prince George’s County Public Schools that serves children ages 5-21 with severe and profound disabilities. There are 2 programs. One is for students with multiple disabilities (generally a combination of intellectual plus orthopedic, visual, and/or muscular). The other is for students with autism. 

Because the students have significant cognitive disabilities, a traditional demo is not possible. However, our students are highly responsive to sensory input: auditory, visual, tactile. Our students with autism are able to manipulate objects and complete tasks with assistance, so they are able to interact with items such as a loom, spinning wheel, musical instruments, etc. They also have varying abilities to connect with objects and people in their environment and to attend to sensory stimulation. 

The Barony of Bright Hills has agreed to do a demo for The Margaret Brent Regional Center in New Carrollton, MD. The date I have set is Thursday, March 10, 2016. We are calling on our closest neighbors to the south, east, and west to help us give these students a day full of sensory input and activities. I have listed some of the sensory areas and items or activities below. 

Visual : Banners depicting our citizens’ devices; Bright colors in our garb; Scrolls with a lot of color and illumination; any gidgets and gadgets that might be visually interesting and large enough for our visually impaired students to see. 

Tactile : Different textures of cloth and materials used for making cloth: Unspun wool, silk and flax; Spun wool, silk and flax; Cloth handmade from those fibers by our skilled weavers. Some of our students could even participate in that activity by passing a shuttle through the fibers on a warp/weft and inkle loom and pulling the mechanism to set that thread in place; Chain maille; Strung beads; Bead embroidery; Possibly fighter equipment to touch only (this is a school, so no martial activities). 

Auditory : MUSIC! We have a hall, so an orchestra can play and sing. We need musicians and singers who can be part of our orchestra. Bright Hills has the PAGE group, but we will likely need others to complete the group. The students are extremely responsive to music. I would also love to have some “wandering minstrels” who could go into classrooms and play for the students. 

STORIES: our students can listen to stories, especially if there are pictures to go with it. 

Taste : most of our students can eat regular foods and liquids. Other students can eat pureed foods. Soft, mushy, and sweet treats would be ideal, including bread. Many of our students also like salty, crunchy snacks. I would also ask Lady Livia di Samuele to bring her Sekanjubin Tavern, especially the really sweet ones. 

Please note that we are a nut-free zone. 

Interactive : our students can manipulate glue, paper and crayons. I know Atlantia’s Ministers of Minors can come up with a few craft activities for the students, especially if there are different textures involved. We have an art room that can be used, plus our hallways. 

As always, we need as many people to provide colorful pageantry as possible. Our staff is an inquisitive bunch, and I’m sure they will be asking questions and enjoying this experience. 

Our students are usually ready to begin instruction by 10:30. They eat lunch between 12 and 1pm, and they can eat in their classrooms, so we can maintain the hall. Dismissal is at 3:30. This gives us 2 windows for demonstration: 10:30-12 and 1-3 to allow for dismissal prep. 

I will be coordinating with the principal, Dr. Loretta Cutright, to devise a schedule for all activities. If you can help us or have any additional suggestions and questions, please contact me at vwank35 at comcast.net . 

I hope we can gather such a variety of good gentles to provide these special students with a truly unique experience. I look forward to sharing our students and school with all of you. 

In Service to Atlantia, 

Lady Rebekkah Samuel 

(mka Victoria Wank) 

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