Kenwood’s FALS Students Gaining Real Life Shopping Experience


FALS students at Walmart for their weekly shopping trip.

Kim Lopez-Zamudio

It’s important for students to get the right education, but it’s also important for students to
develop a better understanding of the outside world and experience the social interaction of that world. Kenwood’s FALS program (Functional Academic Learning Support) has taken action on helping their students understand and experience real life experiences.

Kenwood’s FALS instructional assistant Mr. Harrison started a service experience with his FALS students in 2019. To provide students with a real life hands on experience, he came up with the weekly idea for his FALS students to collect a shopping lists from teachers to search for various items in local stores.

The FALS shopping trips happen during school hours from 11:50-1:20 on Thursdays. Kenwood teachers and staff send Mr. Harrison their shopping lists for students to search for and purchase items. English teacher Ms. Fulcher frequently sends the FALS program a weekly list. She shares, “I love the FALS shopping program!  Not only is it amazing that they snag me the best deals at Wal-Mart, but a delivery from a FALS student always brightens my day!”

Current FALS teacher, Mr. Weybright adds, “We have several local businesses that we visit every week where students gain work experience. We work at SPUNK fitness, the Essex branch of BCPL, and at PetCo. When we go to Walmart, students get practice each week searching for, comparing prices of items, and purchasing items for teachers who have placed their orders with us.”

Students headed back to Kenwood with their weekly shopping items.

These weekly trips are beneficial to the students as the students practice searching for items, comparing prices, handling cash, purchasing items, and communicating with a cashier. They then bring the purchased items back to school. Mr. Weybright adds, “Though our weekly shopping trip is primarily with the students within the FALS program, others could get involved by giving us a challenge to look for a good deal or some obscure item at Walmart!”

Students enjoy their weekly shopping trips and looking for items for Kenwood staff. If you’re in need for something from Walmart but just don’t have the time to make it there, get your shopping list in to the FALS program by Thursday and your items will be waiting for at the end of the day!