EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) - When you think of Special Olympics, sports like track and field might come to mind.
But some Socorro ISD students with more advanced disabilities instead got the opportunity to celebrate their one-of-a-kind talents.
"This not only puts a smile on his face, it puts a smile in his heart," one local teacher's aide told KTSM of a participating student.
The district hosted its ocean-themed Celebration Day on Friday, where students with special needs participated in therapeutic and educational activities.
"They use all their senses when they're here, so it helps them with finger grip, touch, smell, it's just an awesome experience," adaptive physical education teacher Bobby Lucero said.
The event helps students embrace their own unique abilities while learning skills that will help them in and outside the classroom.
"This is an opportunity to celebrate some of our kiddos, give them a sensory experience, have them see things feel things smell things," Penny Flores of SISD's special education department said.
Organizers say the event even helps students develop their vocabularies.
"These types of events allow for a lot of opportunities for language acquisition and development," Speech Therapist Melissa Ortiz explained.
This is the 11th year the Celebration Day has been held. Students who attended received prizes and medals for their participation.
"I don't think anything else comes close to seeing the looks on their faces, seeing their parents' faces, just truly a way to celebrate who they are," Flores said.