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Mullinax Ford's Making Spirits Bright: Bright Beginnings sponsored by Spectrum Collision

(image: WPMI) Mullinax Ford's Making Spirits Bright: Bright Beginnings sponsored by Spectrum Collision

The young students in a small second story classroom have a thirst for learning.

Watch them for a few minutes, and that becomes pretty obvious.

But what might not be so evident, is that these youngsters have obstacles to learning that your youngster might not .

These students experience dyslexia.

Simply put, they have trouble matching up printed letters and words with the sounds of the words they represent.

"Most of these children are ADHD,” says Gina Englund, director of Mobile’s Bright Beginnings Academy. “They have a hard time focusing and staying still."

Bright Beginnings Academy is a school specifically designed for students dealing with dyslexia.

"These kids are very bright,” she says. “They are off-the-charts smart. They have difficulty with written language. So that's our goal, to get them to realize they have a lot to offer and a lot of potential"

Connecting with students.

It's never easy, and the same is true here at Bright Beginnings Academy, and they're always looking for new ways to do that.

But, you know what? They think they've found one!"

It’s bows and arrows, and students here know how to use them.

Bright Beginnings now has an archery team.

"The children wanted to have a sport.” Says Englund, “so we decided to try archery."

Well, that's how it started, anyway. Then the teachers here started to notice something.

Student Aaron Kirby noticed something, too.

"Yeah, It helps you focus more,” he says, sending three consecutive arrows into the center of a bullseye. “Cause you're shooting and you have to block everything else out. Cause people will be talking and all that, so you have to focus when you shoot."

Mrs. Englund noticed.

"We have seen big improvements in their ability to sit and focus on their class work."

And Aaron's father, David Kirby, noticed too.

"Absolutely,” says Kirby. “I had no idea he was good as he was. He's very good at it."

Kirby says he can readily see the positive effect archery has had on his son here at Bright Beginnings... and as part of our Spirit of Giving campaign, his business, Spectrum Collision, is donating a tidy sum of money to expand the school’s library.

Quite a gift, topped with a holiday "bow" sure to make their spirits bright!

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