"Preparing students to step forward with confidence and a vision of lifetime success."

SD School for the Blind & Visually Impaired - Student Activities

Student Council

This student organization is open to students in the 7th grade or beyond. In addition to group meetings to develop and set up on campus events and activities, this group also participates in community service projects. For more information, please contact Jodi Carlsgaard at jodi.carlsgaard@sdsbvi.northern.edu

Music

In addition to individual and small group music classes, including piano and instrumental training at all levels, students in 7th grade or older also have the opportunity to participate in the annual music contest at NSU, sponsored by the South Dakota High School Activities Association. For more information, please contact Phyllis Heier at phyllis.heier@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Forensics

The object of this Association is to promote speech training in the secondary schools of the visually impaired and to arrange annually for an interscholastic Forensic Festival. To further this purpose, guidelines of the Association shall specify rules and other data necessary and convenient for the orderly conduct of contests in the following fields of speech: 1) eight-minute speech, 2) four-minute speech, 3) serious interpretation, 4 ) humorous interpretation, 5) poetry reading, 6) Serious prose reading, 7) Humorous Prose Reading, 8) duo, 9) great speeches, 10) impromptu, and 11) open. Visit the NCASB Forensics website at http://www.ncasb.org/index.php/ncasb-sports/17-sports/forensics/34-forensics. For more information, please contact Ardell Fiedler at ardell.fiedler@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Goalball

Goalball is a game played by two, three man teams at a time. Each player wears a blindfold while playing the game. The object of the game is to roll the goalball, which has bells in it, past the members of the opposing team and their goal line. When this is accomplished, a goal is scored. For more information, please contact Tevan Fischbach at tevan.fischbach@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Bowling

Each school year our students participate in the recreational and leisure activity of bowling. Our local bowling alley accommodates us with several afternoons of bowling. Some of our students use bowling ramps and gutter guards, and others bowl without accommodations. Bowling is a lifelong activity all people can do and our students thoroughly enjoy this unit of instruction. For more information, please contact Christy Hulscher at christy.hulscher@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

SPURS (Special People Using Riding Skills)

Our students participate in SPURS during the fall and spring once a week. This program helps students with strength, balance, coordination, self-confidence, stress relief, and the enjoyment of being around horses. SPURS may be integrated with therapy programs in the IEP or as part of SDSBVI adaptive PE classes. For more information, please contact Christy Hulscher at christy.hulscher@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Swimming

Our swimming program is offered to elementary and secondary students. We utilize the Northern State University Barnett Center pool twice a week. There are two groups and each group swims once a week the entire school year. We work on beginning to advance swimming skills, water aerobics/exercise, and games and leisure. Some of our students compete in Special Olympics or North Central Association of Schools for the Blind competitions. For more information, please contact Christy Hulscher at christy.hulscher@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Track and Field

September is when our students participate in track and field. Students run on a track with or without a wire, throw the shot put, standing long jump, running long jump, triple jump, and three consecutive jump. We travel either to Minnesota or Kansas schools for the blind for meets. Students must be in the 7th grade or 14 years old to participate. For more information, please contact Christy Hulscher at christy.hulscher@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Special Olympics

The SDSBVI takes part in Special Olympics events during the fall and spring of the year. Students participate in bowling at the local and state level in October/November of each year. Currently, both of these tournaments are held in Aberdeen. In the spring students take part in aquatics and track and field events. Students usually attend the city, regional, and state aquatic events, and the regional and state track and field events. Visit the South Dakota Special Olympics website at: http://www.sosd.org/. For more information or to volunteer, please contact Tevan Fischbach at tevan.fischbach@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

 Residential

For more information on any of our residential activities, please contact Nichole Nelson at nichole.nelson@sdsbvi.northern.edu.

Teen Center
Our Teen Center was funded by our Student Council and has music, air hockey, Power Showdown game, and pool table. It is a great place for the students to just hang out.
Playing in the Gym
The students enjoy rollerskating, working out, running/walking, riding bikes in the winter, and building awesome forts.
Game Night
We love to play bingo, cards, and board games; and we play them in both Braille and Low Vision versions. Computer and Wii games are also a big hit with the students.
Shopping/Treat Night
The students go shopping weekly for things they might need or want, and we end the excursion with a treat at their favorite places.
Movie Marathons
The students love to unwind on Fridays with a movie marathon of their favorite movies and popcorn. The older students compete to see who can stay up the latest!
Playground Fun
Outside play activities on our wonderfully accessible playground.
Winter
Sledding and snow shoeing are enjoyed by the students.
Special Outings
We have football and basketball fans and the NSU Athletic Department is generous to allow our students entry to all of their games at no cost. We also attend concerts, plays, and other age-appropriate activities for our students. NSU is a very good friend to us.
The Shrine Circus is a real favorite with our students. Everyone always wants to ride on the smelly elephants!
The "Helping Hands" tomato planting is a cooperative project we do with the Royal Neighbors of America. It is really nice to have fresh tomatoes throughout the summer months, and when you are growing them yourself, it makes them all the better!
The Student Council Rummage Sale is held every year in May. Needless to say, we are collecting "treasures" all school year and the community has been great about supporting our sales.
The Student Council Overnight Party at the Mina Lake Lodge is the culmination of Student Council activities for the year. The goal is to chow down on good food and stay up as late as you can. The younger students can’t wait until they are old enough to participate in Student Council!
The Arts in the Park festival is held across the road at Melgaard Park in early June. The students love to get their yearly "junk food fix" at the festival while listening to different music acts throughout the weekend.
Going on a trip to Seche Hollow each fall is another favorite with our students. We take a picnic lunch and travel the Sisseton way and take on the hiking trails throughout the park. The trick to truly enjoying the day in all of its fall glory is to pick a weekend when the leaves are turning the beautiful reds, greens, and golds for which Seche Hollow is famous.
Eagle Day at Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge is another special day for our staff and students. We pack lunch and head to the Refuge for their program and hopefully view an eagle or two.
Seasonal parties are a major activity and really anticipated by both students and staff. We kick off the school year with a picnic sponsored by the Aberdeen Lions, NSU Lions, and Aberdeen Lioness Clubs. The students and staff look forward to reconnecting with the members, but most of all the great food! The students’ favorite activity with the Lions Club is the annual Christmas pizza party and Santa stopping with gifts makes their Christmas with us very special. In fact, many Lions Clubs around the State are very generous with donations of things the students really enjoy. The Clubs are good to us.
All in all, the Residential Program is a busy, safe, and fun place for our students to live and grow.