Dressing up and going to a party are typical activities high school students partake in on Halloween. This year, the Cypress Bay Social Skills class organized a party of its own. The event was scheduled at Tarantella’s Ristorante at Weston Town Center on Halloween night. Although some of the students were hesitant to participate at first, the planned activity was structured to have them practice both social skills and money management. The students were tasked with coming to the event in a full costume, ordering and paying for their individual dinners, and socializing amongst each other. As a result of these tasks, the students were given practice with various facets of socializing and managing themselves. The choice of which costume to wear gave them a sense of individuality and preference. Ordering and paying for their own meals taught them about independence and managing money, both of which are key components of successful adult living. And, socializing proved to be great practice in conversing and getting to know people, both of which are large aims of the class they all are in.

The students seemed to greatly enjoy this outing with their classmates, teachers, and the HDS Foundation staff.  The creativity and effort that went into the costumes was truly remarkable, with Mario, Anna from Frozen, magicians, gangsters, zombies, and many other characters showing up. Some of the students had such an enjoyable time that they continued their evening together around Weston after the dinner.

Thank you to John and our server who facilitated this event and kindly helped us out, creating individual bills and servicing the group so nicely. As a result of the kindness put forth by the Tarantella staff, the students had the opportunity to develop some common life skills, all of which are key to their success. It was really a fun and successful night, with delicious food and Halloween cheer.