Circuit Train Your Brain

SPecially Adapted Resource Clubs (SPARC) is an innovative clubhouse model supporting young adults with life-long physical and/or developmental disabilities. SPARC supports club members as they continue life-skills development with an added component of entrepreneurial projects and enrichment activities such as music and art therapies.

Life-skill development is accomplished through the guided activities presented by staff. Vocational skill development is accomplished through dynamic entrepreneurial projects. SPARC participants learn what it is like to operate a small business in direct support of their club. We currently produce note cards and calendars showcasing our own artwork and photography.

Before coming to SPARC, I had nothing to do with my time. Now I’m learning new things, making new friends and having fun in the process. SPARC really makes me feel like I belong.
Photo of SPARC members learning gardening

Horticulture projects promote sensory integration and active learning

SPARC makes learning accessible

SPARC has created a model of accessible stations to support independent learning through engaging activities that appeal to a wide range of interests. Each station supports a participant’s individual goals of communication, literacy, life skills development, sensory integration, vocational skills development and active-learning leisure interests. Members are encouraged to select activities that enhance independent learning and to explore subjects of interest just as peers without disabilities enjoy.

Popular accessibility adapted and/or staff supported activities include:

  • Reception station to continue vocational skills development
  • Media Center to explore and understand current events
  • Computer Lab to support research, learning and accessibility through technology to the community at-large
  • Library to foster literacy and support book club activities
  • Instructional/Demonstration Kitchen to support nutritional requirements and promote life skill growth
  • Horticulture Station for sensory integration and active learning
  • Gross Motor Station to support and promote good physical health and coordination
  • Small Animal Habitats for sensory integration and shared responsibilities of caring for pets
  • Conference Station to support participants self-direction of club and extracurricular activities
  • Sensory Integration Station supports therapeutic fine motor training and arts and craft activities guided for each member’s skill set
  • Respite Station to support quiet physical rest if needed during the day
Photo of SPARC club members learning how to cook a new dish

Adapted cooking station provides a host of learning opportunities

SPARC stations are designed to work independently or operate as a system. Guided, thematic lessons are introduced and learning is accomplished through “circuiting” through various stations to focus on one component of each lesson. Lessons incorporate as many stations as possible to bring and enriching dimension to each theme.

Sample Circuit Training lesson plan

Countries of the United Nations

  • Participants vote on a country to research and explore
  • Move through computer lab and plan a virtual trip, examine currency, culture, history, cuisine, sports, climate, tourist attractions, etc.
  • Select a recipe and prepare it in our kitchen — Reinforcing budgeting, shopping for ingredients, and food preparation
  • Move to the gym and play a game or sport adapted to bring an experience from that country to life

Supporting members AND their families

Staff and volunteers also facilitate nutritional and personal care for each participant according to their needs and preferences. Peers will have the opportunity to help one another in an adapted and accessible environment. Families living with adults with life-long disabilities benefit from an accessible, flexible, daily option for respite. Club participants may choose the length of time they attend the club during any of our operating hours around their own schedules. This encourages participants to engage in part-time work or volunteer opportunities knowing they are welcome to participate in the club when they are available. In fact, our innovative programs allow them to develop the skills to expand their world outside the confines of our clubhouse and actively become members of the greater community.

Program eligibility

Any adult over the age of 22 with a life-long disability is eligible to participate in SPARC.

SPARC participants pay a monthly fee well below market rates for similar programs. Scholarships are available. Please contact us for details. Club participants will also have the opportunity to contribute financially and fundraise in support of their club voluntarily.

SPARC relies on partnerships with local county government, faith-based organizations, public contributions, private-sector sponsors, foundation grants and fundraising special events for financial sustainability.