A child with a disability is an individual just like anyone else. While the disability is an integral part of who he is, it alone does not define him. Don’t make him into a victim. Treat him as an individual.
Inclusion means that the care and education of all children, with and without disabilities, takes place in everyday routines, activities, and places. Specialized services are embedded within the routines of those settings. Children are not only present, but participate as active social members of their peer groups and are seen as valuable members of their families and communities.
An inclusive attitude accepts that all children with and without disabilities should be respected and supported to feel capable and safe, and can experience the benefits of living and growing together. By creating an atmosphere in which children are better able to accept and understand differences among themselves, children begin to realize and accept that some people need to use wheelchairs, some use hearing aids, and some use their arms and legs in different ways.
Inclusion Benefits Children
- Children develop friendships and learn how to play and interact with one another.
- Children develop a more positive image of themselves and a healthy attitude about the uniqueness of others.
- Children are provided with models of people who achieve, despite challenges.
- All children have opportunities to learn new skills by observing and imitating other children.
- Children are encouraged to be resourceful, creative, and cooperative.
- Children are more sensitive to the interests and needs of others.
- Positive attitudes are developed that impact future relationships.
You can help your child by making your home an inclusive environment. All children benefit when adults recognize the similarities in children, acknowledge the differences, and have curiosity about a child’s unique point of view.
Make these tips a part of your everyday routine:
- Model Appropriate Behavior
- Use Person First Language
- Acknowledge Differences & Encourage Acceptance of Differences
- State the Rules for Treating Others Respectfully
- Educate and Allow Children to Explore through Play – Read stories and Provide Toys that Reflect Diversity
- Respond Honestly, Simply and Clearly to Children’s Questions about Disabilities
The Indiana Partnership for Inclusive Child Care (IPICC) serves to educate, support and empower communities, families and child care providers to increase the availability of and access to developmentally appropriate, healthy and safe child care for all children. The primary focus of the project is to provide quality child care environments and parental support for families of children with special needs.
For more information on IPICC, contact our Inclusion Specialist.
Have a Great Week!