Students at AMP were taken on a magical field trip to Disney … without ever leaving the school building! Physical Education teacher Maribeth Miller transformed the gymnasium into a miniature replica of Disney, complete with movies, rides, and souvenirs!

“Disney Days” incorporates the excitement of Disney characters with skills the children are learning in physical education class, and in their regular classrooms. As children ride scooters around the various Disney stations, they use physical skills such as balance and kicking. They use math skills as they count to ten while pumping gas into their scooters and they practice reading as they look at the names of the various stations they can visit. There was a Disney theater, library, day care (for stuffed animals), highway (for scooter riding), Diner for making pretend snacks, and a souvenir shop for browsing.
AMP Assistant Principal Michele Yuskiewicz said that Ms. Miller takes an incredibly fun experience and incorporates many parts of the curriculum into the event. “She doesn’t just focus on physical education skills. There is reading, math, geography, and so much more. The children have no idea how much they are gaining from this – they are just having a blast,” she said.

Kindergarten students entered the transformed gymnasium with mouths wide open in surprise. Jumping up and down, the youngest students couldn’t wait to get started on their Disney journey. Second graders, who have enjoyed Disney Days each year at AMP, were sad to say goodbye to the special program at the end of their physical education class. “I’ll miss you Disney,” they yelled as they left the gymnasium. “Don’t forget me!”

Ms. Miller said that when she sees former students now in high school, they always ask about Disney Days.  “They always remember the event as one of their favorites,” she said. Although setting up the event is a tremendous amount of work, the smiles on the children’s faces and the fact that they never forget it, makes it all worthwhile for her.