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Rye Osborn Students Celebrate Diversity

RYE, N.Y. — Fourth-graders at Osborn Elementary School in Rye learned about the many cultural, physical and mental differences people overcome everyday at the school's annual diversity day celebration on Monday.

Administered in conjunction with students from Fairfield University's graduate school of education, the program aims to increase both awareness and tolerance for different disabilities as well as cultural and physical differences.

As part of the program, students were challenged to complete everyday tasks, but from the point of a view of someone with a physical or mental disability. Students were also given quizzes in languages other than English to simulate what it's like for an ELL student.

"It's hard to do things in a wheelchair," fourth-grader Charlie Paparella said. "But people can still do many things, even if they have a disability."

Students were also exposed to books in braille and learned how to type on a braille machine.

"I learned you can do anything if you are blind," fourth-grader Zach Fogarty said. "I use to think you could not do anything. I also learned about dyslexia."

The students also recieved a special presentation from Sylvia Van den Brink, who spoke only in Dutch to the students.

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