Through the month of February, our school participated in JDAIM (Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance, and Inclusion Month). I was extremely proud of my Grade 2 class for putting together a video about Inclusive Communities; why they are important and what they should look like. We entered our video into a local Youth Leadership Contest and came in second place!
I’d like to believe that anyone who knows me knows how passionate I am about Inclusion, Special Education, and Exceptional Learners. This is why I choose to surround myself with professional growth opportunities throughout the year; like being an active member in our school’s Behaviour Management / Collaborative Problem Solving Cohort. I also find opportunities to bring inclusion awareness and acceptance into my classroom outside of the month of February.
Next week, we are celebrating our Innovation Day (formerly known as Science Fair). In past years, I have had students use inclined planes (through our Simple Machines Unit) to build marble runs. However, this year I was looking to make this task more authentic with some real world connections. I brainstormed with Josh Ray, a colleague of mine who oversees our Innovation Day, and came to the decision that this was a perfect opportunity to continue educating my Grade 2 students on the importance of inclusion and accessibility.
I am so excited about this project and I am so excited to share the finished projects with their parents and our larger school community.
With today being April 1st – and no I am not talking about April Fool’s Day (although I am the queen of pranks) – Today is the first day of Autism and Neurodiversity awareness month. This is a fantastic time to remind yourself of the importance of inclusion and not only awareness but ACCEPTANCE!
While this month is specifically about neurodiversity, I want to share a small list of some of my favourite resources for inclusion and all exceptionalities…
– This is one of my favourite videos from Shelley Moore as she explains the evolution of inclusion. Her entire library of videos is amazing! Highly recommend!
– This amazing book “My Brain Needs Glasses: ADHD Explained to Kids” – to help children (or anyone) better understand ADHD.
– Understood.org is a fantastic website FILLED with articles and information for parents and educators. I highly recommend doing a deep dive into their articles or simply searching a specific topic. Here is a short article about Neurodiversity.
– This short video (also linked on my Innovation Day Slides above) is a powerful tool to use in a primary classroom in order to spark a discussion about disabilities, inclusion, and kindness.
Again, these are just a FEW simple resources I wanted to share with you today. If this is an area that you are interested in or passionate about, leave a comment below! Let’s connect! I am by no means an expert – just a passionate educator.