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Have you ever seen a group of children mocking the way a person with a

disability walks? Have you ever overheard a child call a person with a disability a
disparaging name? When children dont fully understand why a person is different, they
often make fun of him or her.
It is important for people to understand disabilities. For children, this is especially
important because attitudes develop during childhood by watching and listening to peers,
teachers and family. he classroom is an ideal place to increase knowledge about people
with disabilities and to foster positive attitudes about them.
he information contained in this packet provides suggestions for planning and
implementing disability awareness activities in your classroom. When creating a unit on
disability awareness it is suggested that the following format be used!
Step 1: Do activities that show how students are alike and different.
Step 2: Teach how to interact with people with disabilities.
Step 3: Talk about disabilities in general (what, what, wh!
Step ": Teach what it is like to have different disabilities through hands on
activities.
Step #: $elebrate the abilities of people with disabilities.
ST%& 1: Si'ilarities and Differences
(ctivit 1: Si'ilarities and differences
)aterials needed: large cardboard dolls "cut#outs$
wheelchair
walker
name cards
*verview! %hildren should be gathered in a group around the teacher. he three dolls
will be the focus of attention.
Introduce first doll as a person named &&&&&&&&&&&&&&
'suggestions from group(
who was born very much like all of you.
'add a name tag(
)sk children to name similarities in all children "arms, legs, etc.$.
)sk children to name some differences among all children "skin color, eyes, hair color,
and gender$.
'add hair and eyes to the doll(
Have children continue to name similarities.
'add name tags, eyes, hair, etc., until all three dolls have been discussed(
*ame three additional differences in the dolls +
,. %erebral -alsy "might need support in sitting, walking and talking$
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7. )utism "signals to8from your brain are interrupted$
9. :ental disability "might not learn as ;uickly or as much as you$
)sk the children if they know other children who have one of these disabilities.
)sk the children to think of other ways in which the children they mentioned are <ust like
them.
:ost children, for e=ample, like fu>>y animals, music, balls, balloons, playing, hugs,
smiles, sitting on lap of mom or dad, visiting grandparents, stories, television, friends,
%hristmas, birthdays. In other words, children with disabilities have many of the same
interests as children without disabilities. hey also can do many of the same things and
we should never assume they cant participate in activities.
(ctivit 2: 6ive students a learning styles survey to identify their specific learning style.
)sk students to answer the following ;uestions by making a collage with pictures and
words that show the answers.
,. What time of day do you like to do homework?
7. Where do you like to do homework?
9. What special tools do you use for homework?
?. What is8are your learning styles?
@. 0o you like working alone or with someone?
A. 0o you like reading, writing, or talking best?
-ost the displays around the room and have students look for other students with similar
answers. .tress that we are more alike than different.
(ctivit 3: Explain to the class that the purpose of the program is to
help them imagine what it might be like to have "different abilities"
than they do now; to understand why some people act differently than
they might expect. Write the word "ability" on the board and talk
about what it means. Write the word "unique" on the board and talk
about what it means.
Explain that everyone has different abilities. Say that you want to find
out how the students in the class are different. ave them raise their
hands in response to questions! such as these"
Who can ride a bicycle?
Who can roller skate?
Who can roller-blade?
Who knows the multiplication tables through 5's?
Who knows how to do long division?
Who knows the multiplication tables 6's through 12's?
Who has messy handwriting? (r who needs more practice with
their cursive?!
Who has really" really" neat handwriting?
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Who is good at video games?
Who runs in medium or slow speed?
Who runs at a very #ast speed?
Who knows how to knit?
Who can make a batch o# cookies?
$tc%%%
#t is important that not every child answers affirmatively to every
question! so you can show diversity. So! for the youngest grades! or if
all the students raise their hands for every question! it is best to
include questions such as the following.
Who has black hair ?
Who has blonde hair?
Who has brown hair?
Who wears glasses?
$tc%%%
Comment on the fact that everyone has different abilities or
qualities about themselves that make them unique among
others.
$ow describe a scene on the playground! and ask...&'ave you ever
played kickball (or other relevant game) and when it was your turn to
kick" you planned to really kick it hard so it would go #ar%%%and when
the ball was pitched to you" you tried to kick it" but you missed?& %ou
can act this out while you are talking to make it more dramatic. &sk
&Who likes it when the other kids say" '%%%don't worry" try again" it's
okay" you can do it"*%%%'?& 'r who likes it when they say &%%%don't be so
stupid" why did you do that?& (ypically! all of the children will raise
their hands to agree with wanting to be understood.
$ow ask &Who likes it when people understand you?& )uestions can
also be phrased slightly differently! like &Who wants #riends who
understand you?& or &Who likes it when their #riends understand
them?&
Comment on the fact that even though everyone has different
abilities, talents, and qualities, that we are the same in one
basic way; we all want other people to understand us.
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
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ST%& 2: &rotocol +deas
here is an appropriate and inappropriate way to interact with people with disabilities.
For e=ample, the phrase Bperson with a disabilityC is preferred instead of Bhandicapped
personC because the word BhandicappedC derives from Bcap in hand,C a phrase associated
with beggars and begging. Heres another e=ample! When talking to a person who is
blind, do not yell or raise your voice. he person can hear <ust fine.
he 5aster .eal .ociety offers these helpful hints when meeting friends with disabilities!
,. Its okay to offer your help to someone, but dont <ust go ahead. )sk first. 1r wait for
someone to ask you for your help.
7. Its okay to ask people about their disabilities and its also okay for them not to talk
about it.
9. 4emember, <ust because people use wheelchairs, it doesnt mean they are sick. Dots of
people who use wheelchairs are healthy and strong.
?. Its okay to ask people who have speech problems to repeat what they said if you
didnt understand the first time.
@. 0ont speak loudly when talking to people with visual impairments. hey hear as well
as you do.
A. *ever pet or play with seeing eye dogs. hey cant be distracted from the <ob they are
doing.
E. Invite friends with disabilities to <oin you in daily activities and special occasions.
%hildren, invite friends with disabilities to sleep over, come to your house to play, or to
your birthday party. hink about ways to make sure they can be involved in the things
you do.
F. 0ont park in places reserved for people with disabilities. %hildren, dont let your
parents park in these spaces.
G. When you go to restaurants and shopping malls, see if a friend with a disability could
be there with you. If not, ask the manager to put in ramps, get raised numbers for the
elevators, or have /raille menus printed.
,H. reat a person with a disability the way you like to be treated and youll have a friend
for life. -eople with disabilities are entitled to the courtesies that you e=tend to anyone.
his includes their personal privacy. If you dont generally ask people personal ;uestions,
then dont ask those ;uestions of people with disabilities.
So'e general considerations for disabilit eti,uette
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If you dont make a habit of leaning or hanging on to people youre with, then dont
lean or hang on someones wheelchair. Wheelchairs are an e=tension of personal space
for people who use them.
When you offer to assist someone with a vision impairment, allow the person to take
your arm. his will help you to guide, rather than propel or lead the person.
reat people with disabilities the same way you treat others.
+n conversation
When talking with someone with a disability, speak directly to that person rather than
through a companion or interpreter who might be along.
4ela=. 0ont be embarrassed if you happen to use accepted, common e=pressions,
such as B.ee you laterC or B6ot to be running along,C that seems to relate to the persons
disability.
o get the attention of a person with a hearing impairment, tap the person on the
shoulder or wave your hand. Dook directly at the person and speak clearly, slowly and
e=pressively to establish if the person can read your lips. *ot all persons with hearing
impairments can lip read. hose who do will rely on facial e=pressions and other body
language to help in understanding. .how consideration by placing yourself facing the
light source and keeping your hands and food away from your mouth when speaking.
Ieep mustaches well trimmed. .houting wont help. Written notes will.
When talking with a person in a wheelchair for more than a few minutes, place
yourself at the eye level of the person to spare you both a stiff neck.
When greeting a person with a visual impairment, always identify yourself and others
who are with you. .ay, for e=ample, B1n my right is -enelope -otts.C When conversing
in a group, remember to say the name of the person to whom you are speaking to give
verbal cue. .peak in a normal tone of voice, indicate when you move from one place to
another, and let it be known when the conversation is at an end.
6ive whole, unhurried attention when youre talking to a person with a speech
impairment. Ieep your manner encouraging rather than correcting, be patient rather than
speak for the person. When necessary, ask short ;uestions that re;uire short answers or a
nod or shake of the head. *ever pretend to understand if you are having difficulty doing
so. 4epeat what you understand. he persons reaction will clue you in and guide you to
understanding.
So'e co''on courtesies
When giving directions to a person using a wheelchair, consider distance, weather
conditions and physical obstacles such as stairs, curbs and steep hills.
3se specifics such as Bleft a hundred feetC or Bright two yardsC when directing a
person with a visual impairment.
/e considerate of the e=tra time it might take for a person with a disability to get
things done. Det the person set the pace in walking and other activities.
When planning events involving persons with disabilities, consider their needs ahead
of time. If an insurmountable barrier e=ists, let them know about it prior to the event.
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
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ST%& 3: Disabilit *verview
he goal for this step is to discuss disabilities in general. alk about why people might
have a disability + some are born with a disability and others ac;uire the disability "an
accident or old age$. -erhaps a student in your class has a family member, friend or
neighbor who has a disability. )llow the students to share with the class.
alk about physical disabilities and e;uipment people who have physical disabilities use,
such as wheelchairs, leg braces, artificial arms or legs, etc. If possible, have some of these
items in the class so the children can e=plore them. )lso, read stories about children with
disabilities to your class.
here are a variety of easy simulation activities that demonstrate difficulties in motor
coordination or muscle control that someone with a physical disability might have. In the
al lthumbs activity, tape a childs thumb and forefinger together and have him or her try
to pick up raisins. In the gloves activity, have each child wear a pair of gloves and have
them try to pick up pennies and drop them in a bag.
)nother suggested activity focuses on accessibility and the 3niversal )ccess .ymbol.
/egin by e=plaining what the 3niversal )ccess .ymbol means and
how it is used. his might include wide aisles and oversi>ed bathrooms for people who
usewheelchairs, parking spaces near entrances8e=its, interpreters for people who are deaf,
or special assistance upon re;uest. .uggest that people with disabilities might need
supports to contribute fully to society ... like people with poor vision need glasses. hese
special accommodations, marked by the 3niversal )ccess .ymbol, allow people with
disabilities to have the same access and independence that people without disabilities
have. It is important to e=plain that even though the symbol is a person in a wheelchair, it
translates into accessibility for people with a variety of disabilities. "here are a few other
3niversal )ccess .ymbols that denote accessibility for specific disabilities such as
hearing. /ut the primary access symbol is the person in the wheelchair.$
hen e=plain that having a disability doesnt mean a person cant do the same types of
things as people without disabilities. -eople with disabilities have <obs, go to school, and
are moms, dads, brothers and sisters. he only difference is that they might need
accommodations or e;uipment such as materials using large#si>e print, a voice#activated
computer or appropriate space to maneuver a wheelchair.
)sk children to name places where they have seen the 3niversal )ccess .ymbol sign.
he children should begin to reali>e that the symbol is found in a variety of places, which
demonstrates that people with disabilities are everywhere, doing the same types of daily
activities as people without disabilities.
*ow ask children to identify people they know who have disabilities + everyone probably
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knows someone with a disability. 6ive e=amples from your own life such as your mom
who has arthritis, your uncle who uses a hearing aid, your nephew who has a learning
disability or your friend who wears eyeglasses. he purpose of this discussion is to point
out that disability is a natural part of life.
5=plain that people with disabilities have the same likes, dislikes, fears and hopes. hey
have goals, wants and needs. -hysical and attitudinal barriers, however, keep people with
disabilities from having opportunities to be friends, coworkers, etc.
)sk the children during the course of a week to keep a list of everywhere they see
3niversal )ccess .ymbol signs. hey should also pick one place and e=amine its
accessibility.
For e=ample!
)re appropriate signs used to note access?
0o restrooms appear to be large enough for wheelchairs and do they have grab
bars on the walls?
0o doorways appear to be large enough for wheelchairs?
0o elevators have /raille ne=t to each button and enunciators or BbeepersC for
each floor?
)re there accessible parking spaces near entrances8e=its? "%hildren should check
to see if cars parked in accessible spaces have plates or placards with the
3niversal )ccess .ymbol.$
5=plain to children that there are e=act guidelines defining accessibility for businesses
and communities to follow. )lthough they wont know for sure if a public bathroom stall
is the right si>e, they can at least check to see if an attempt has been made to make it
accessible.
ST%& ": (ctivities
17 Ways to Infuse Disabilities into
Curriculum Across Age Levels
1. Have adults come to class to talk about their lives and history in the local
community.
Include adults ith disabilities.
!. Have students do "accessibility surveys# and ma$s of neighborhoods%
schools% and
communities that identify various barriers and accommodations. &ot 'ust
ram$s
and curb cuts% but (raille% gra$hics% visual cues% and so on.
). Have students rite children*s stories ith $ortrayals of $eo$le ith
disabilities
that challenge common stereoty$es or misconce$tions.
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+. Incor$orate and discuss stories that have disability themes and
characters.
,. Have children do an oral history intervie ith 1- a family member or
friend ho
has a disability or !- a family member or friend ho has a relative ith a
disability.
.. Have students rite an essay on some common e/$ression or term and
e/$lain the
stereoty$es about disability that it shos.
7. 0ho students videos about the history of eugenics 1a move in the 2rst
$art of
the !3th century to involuntarily sterili4e and segregate $eo$le ith
disabilities
deemed "socially undesirable#- and its association ith racism.
5. Have students rite a biogra$hy of historical 2gures ith a disabilities.
6. Have students learn !3 ords of American 0ign Language or ho to
2ngers$ell the
manual al$habet.
13. Have students learn the al$habet in (raille.
11. 7ake students to a museum and look for things about disability.
1!. Have students $re$are $hoto essays about the barriers disabled $eo$le
face in the
community.
1). 7each students about the $arts of the brain that control di8erent motor
functions and have them color these in.
1+. Have student grou$s design a ne $iece of e9ui$ment or ada$tation
1they don*t
have to build it- for $eo$le ith di8erent ty$es of disabilities 1e.g.% moving
sidealks on city blocks-.
1,. Have small grou$s of students surf the Web for resources about
di8erent ty$es
of disabilities.
1.. Have students design a ne gra$hic symbol 1to re$lace the stick 2gure
in the
heelchair- to signify disability access and rights.
17. :any disability advocates have critici4ed $rograms that try to
"simulate# hat it is
like to have di8erent disabilities. 7heir concern is that such e/ercises often
reinforce stereoty$es and em$hasi4e a "de2cit# model of disability. ;utting
socks on
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our hands to simulate 2ne motor $roblems or sitting in a heelchair for a
fe hours
is seldom a realistic ay to understand the e/$erience of disability.
Discuss ith students their vies on these ty$e of activities.
7he folloing activities are traditional activities that are used to "simulate#
hat it is like to have di8erent disabilities.
Drinking Straws -alore
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Service
Disabilities (ddressed
##/lindness, speech impairments "muteness$, amputations "missing limbs and fingers$
Desired *utco'e
his activity is designed to emphasi>e the interactions that occur between youth with and
without disabilities as they work to accomplish a specific goal##in this case the
construction of a structure using drinking straws and masking tape.
)aterials .eeded
##0rinking .traws# "?H straws per group$ .paghetti noodles may be used instead of
drinking straws, but can be more challenging as they will break during the construction
process.
##:asking ape
##.cotch ape "one roll per group$
##/lind Folds "one per group$
/hat To Do
,. 0ivide the large group into smaller groups of ? to @.
7. 0istribute a handful of drinking straws to each group.
9. -rovide each group with a roll of .cotch tape.
?. )ssign different disabilities to the members of the groups. 0o this by asking one
person, at a time, in each group to hold up their hand. In succession notify these
individuals that they have one of the following disabilities!
##*o use of their thumbs "Jou might wish to tape their thumbs to their hands using
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masking tape$
##*o use of their dominant hand and arm "they must place it behind their back$
##3nable to talk
##/lind "0istribute blind folds$
he remaining member"s$ of each group will be a B)/C "temporary able bodied$,
meaning they will not possess a disability. "*ote! If you have only four members per
group, it is still a good idea to leave one person in each group a B)/C.$
@. )fter each group is ready, inform them that the ob<ect of this activity is to construct the
tallest free standing structure possible using only drinking straws and .cotch tape. he
structure may *1 be anchored to the floor or any other structure, such as a table or
chair. It must be free standing.
A. 6ive them appro=imately 7H minutes to construct their straw structure. his part is
very fle=ible. )dditional time can be allotted for this segment.
0ariation
If working with a group of adults or if a member of the audience is in a wheelchair, this
activity can be adapted by building the longest structure off the end of a table, anchoring
"taping$ the structure only to any part of the table.
1uestions To (sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
##What did the blind person in your group do? ".ometimes, especially in youth groups,
they do not participate.!
##0id members of the group assume that since someone possessed a disability that they
wee not capable of being an active member of the group or they would only be able to do
certain tasks?
##0id any group ask their members with a disability what they felt they could do to
contribute to the group activity? "his is a good chance to mention that one of the
greatest barriers to individuals with a disability is peoples perceptions or beliefs in what
the person with a disability can or cannot do.$
##If you possessed a disability in real life, how would you want people to treat you when
doing something such as what you did here?

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&eanut 2utter Sandwiches
Source: "A Perfect Fit, 4-H Involvement for Youth with Disabilities" !""# $rea%in&
'ew (roun)*'ational A&rAbilit+ Pro,ect, Pur)ue -niversit+ .oo/erative 01tension
Service
Disabilities (ddressed
##/lindness, arm amputation
Desired *utco'e
##-articipants will develop an awareness of the barriers that challenge people who have
ma<or sight limitations or arm amputations.
)aterials .eeded
##-lates and able Inives "he number of plates and knives needed depends on the
number of youth that try this activity. Jou may wish to have tow to four youth
demonstrate the activity in front of the entire group.
##2ar of -eanut /utter
##Doaf of /read
##/lind Folds
/hat To Do
-art ,
,. -lace the plates, knives, <ar of peanut butter "with lid tightly screwed on$ and loaf of
bread "wrapped, tied$ on a table.
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7. )sk for two volunteers.
9. /lindfold the two volunteers.
?. Instruct them that they will, blindfolded, make a peanut butter sandwich.
@. -rior to letting them start, ;uietly move the <ar of peanut butter and loaf of bread. "his
is in effect the same thing that a person without a disability might do, unintentionally,
when visiting the home of a person who is blind.
Kuestions to )sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
##What were some of the problems encountered?
##What were your thoughts when you couldnt find the peanut butter or loaf of bread?
##How do you think a blind person would feel if you moved items in their home?
-art 7
,. -lace the plates, knives, <ar of peanut butter "with lid tightly screwed on$ and loaf of
bread "wrapped, tied$ on a table.
7. )sk for two new volunteers.
9. )sk them to place one hand and arm behind their back.
?. Instruct them to make a peanut butter sandwich using only one hand and arm. "*15!
Jou might re;uire them to use their non#dominant hand and arm.$
Kuestions to )sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
#What were some of the problems encountered?
##What were your thoughts when you couldnt spread the peanut butter like you wanted
to?
##What might be done to make it easier to make a peanut butter sandwich for a person
with only one hand and arm?
##What should you do if you are unsure if a person with a disability needs help or not?
)nswer! )sk them if they would like some help. 0ont be pushy, simply ask. If they say
no, leave it at that.
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Socks, Socks, and )ore Socks
Source: "A Perfect Fit, 4-H Involvement for Youth with Disabilities" !""# $rea%in&
'ew (roun)*'ational A&rAbilit+ Pro,ect, Pur)ue -niversit+ .oo/erative 01tension
Service
Disabilities (ddressed
##:uscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy
Desired *utco'e
##his activity is designed to make people aware of the challenges faced by people who
have a muscular mobility disability.
)aterials .eeded
##wo Heavy -airs of .ocks "It is important that heavy winter type socks be used.$
##.mall ".nack#.i>e$ /o= of 4aisins and8or .everal -ieces of ightly Wrapped %andy.
/hat To Do
,. .elect a volunteer from the audience.
7. )sk them to place tow socks on each hand.
9. Instruct them to either remove 1*5 raisin at a time from the bo= and eat it or unwrap a
piece of candy and eat it. "Jou may wish to have one person do the raisin activity and
another person do the candy activity.
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0ariation
.elect a volunteer shoe is wearing shoes with laces or a button down shirt. )sk the
volunteer to place tow socks on each hand. Instruct them to tie their shoes or button a
shirt.
1uestions to (sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
##What were some of the problems encountered?
##What was the most difficult part of trying to eat a raisin or a piece of candy?
##What are some other tasks that would be difficult for you to do on a daily basis?

3uler 4egs
Source: "A Perfect Fit, 4-H Involvement for Youth with Disabilities" !""# $rea%in&
'ew (roun)*'ational A&rAbilit+ Pro,ect, Pur)ue -niversit+ .oo/erative 01tension
Service
Disabilities (ddressed
##:uscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy
Desired *utco'e
##-articipants will develop an awareness of the barriers that challenge people who have a
fairly severe muscular control limitation.
)aterials .eeded
##4uler
##:asking ape
##.tring
/hat To Do
,. .elect a volunteer from the audience.
7. ape and8or tie the ruler between the persons legs such that their legs are far apart from
each other.
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9. )sk the person to walk away from and then return to the group.
1uestions to (sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
##0id you feel awkward as you walked?
##What do you think people would say or do if you walked like this all the time?
##What would be some other limitations or problems if you had to walk like this all the
time?

/hat5s in the 2ag6
Source: "A Perfect Fit, 4-H Involvement for Youth with Disabilities" !""# $rea%in&
'ew (roun)*'ational A&rAbilit+ Pro,ect, Pur)ue -niversit+ .oo/erative 01tension
Service
Disabilities (ddressed
##/lindness, glaucoma, other sight limitations
Desired *utco'e
##-articipants will develop an awareness of the barriers that challenge people who have
ma<or sight limitations.
)aterials .eeded
##-aper /ag
##:isc. Items, .elect Items that might 4e;uire the 3se of 0ifferent .enses ".mell, touch,
hearing$
##/lindfold
/hat To Do
,. -rior to the program place appro=imately ,@ small items in a paper bag.
7. .elect a volunteer from the audience.
9. /lindfold them.
?. Instruct them to identify the items in the paper bag using their senses. "i.e., feeling,
smelling, listening$
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
4esource %enter, 5)%%H -rogram Website, and 6irl .couts of )merica.
1uestions to (sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
##What were some of the problems the blind person encountered?
##What was the most difficult item for the blind person to identify?
##In addition to listening, feeling, and smellingL how else might a person with sight
impairment identify different items and ob<ects?

$o'puter )ania
Source: "A Perfect Fit, 4-H Involvement for Youth with Disabilities" !""# $rea%in&
'ew (roun)*'ational A&rAbilit+ Pro,ect, Pur)ue -niversit+ .oo/erative 01tension
Service
Disabilities (ddressed
##.pinal cord in<ury that limits use of hands and legs. ";uadriplegic$
Desired *utco'e
##-articipants will develop an awareness of the barriers that challenge people who have
little to no use of their upper body including arms and hands.
)aterials .eeded
##%omputer with Word -rocessing .oftware
##all %up
##3nsharpened -encils
##all able
##Darge 9#ring /inder
/hat To Do
,. -lace the computer with the word processing software running on a table tall enough so
that the participants do not have to bend their trunk in order to press keyboard buttons
with a mouth stick. "*15! he keyboard should be tilted slightly forward. his can be
accomplished by placing the keyboard on a large 9#ring binder notebook.$
7. -lace a new pencil "mouth stick$ in a tall cup with the eraser toward the bottom ne=t to
I-. -rogram, /avaria 0.1, 2an 1sier
Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
4esource %enter, 5)%%H -rogram Website, and 6irl .couts of )merica.
the computer.
9. )sk the participant to sit in a chair close enough to the table such that they will be able
to type their name with the mouth stick using only their head, neck, and mouth. "*15!
hey should not move their trunk.$
?. Have them try to access the print menu using the mouse or function keys.
1uestions to (sk
Following completion of the activity, ask and discuss the following ;uestions!
##What is the most difficult part of typing your name?
##What would it be like if you had to type a ,H#page school report this way?
##What might be done to make it easier to type?
6irl .couts # :ile Hi %ouncil f!MptrainingMpMres.centerMhandoutsM0isability )wareness )ctivities.doc
") 3nited Way )gency$ 4ev. H?8HH N.8<c
7%(3+.- D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 )9::4%D S*9.DS
his activity will help girls to understand the frustration of not hearing clearly.
)sk for one or two volunteers. Have the girls place a cotton ball in the outer part of each ear
and tie a scarf around her head to hold the cotton balls in place. )s an alternative you can
place earphones over her ears.
%ontinue with the regular activities at the meeting.
0o nothing special for the girl. 4epeat when she asks you to.
,. )sk the girls to share how it felt to have their hearing impaired.
7. What were their feelings toward the leader? he other girls?
9. How do people feel who have hearing loss?
?. 0evelop some helpful hints for working with someone with a hearing loss.
7%(3+.- D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 $*))9.+$(T+.-
here are two parts to sounds! loudness and pitch. Doudness ranges from soft to loud. -itch
ranges from high tones to low tones. /oth loudness and pitch together produce the sounds we
hear. -ersons with hearing disabilities usually e=perience a loss in certain tones or pitches as
well as loss in volume of loudness. Hearing disabilities can range from mild to profound and
can produce difficulties in communicating with others. ry this activity to simulate
communicating with someone who cannot hear and understand speech.
0ivide the girls into pairs. 6ive one girl in each pair a message to communicate to her partner
without talking.
-lease get me a drink of water.
-lease get me three books to read.
Its your turn to write on the blackboard.
I have three cats at home.
0iscuss!
,. How did they communicate using eye contact, gestures, pointing to ob<ects, writing, etc.?
7. How did it feel to communicate silently?
9. What are some things to remember when communicating with someone with a hearing
disability?
0+S+*. D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 $%.T3(4 0+S+*.
-ersons with central vision disabilities can see, but they dont see
images clearly and they dont focus well. he world is seen as a fu>>y
image. ry this activity to simulate this disability.
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
4esource %enter, 5)%%H -rogram Website, and 6irl .couts of )merica.
6ive each girl a 9C strip of wa=ed paper over their eyes with their hands at their temples. )sk
them to walk around the room. What can they see or not see? ry to read signs, look at
pictures, etc. -oint out that people with vision disabilities learn to rely on environmental
clues! shapes, sounds, light, color, and movement. hey do not have any special sensory
perceptions, <ust a well#trained awareness.
0iscuss!
,. What are some adaptive aids that can help people with this disability?
7. ry reading with a small, portable telescope or a magnifying glass.
9. )sk if anyone has seen a television screen enlarger.
0+S+*. D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 T9..%4 0+S+*.
-ersons with tunnel vision see a narrower visual field and a very small amount of accurate
central vision. hey have very little or no peripheral vision. ry this activity to simulate
tunnel vision.
Have the girls make binoculars with their hands and place them directly around their eyes.
alk about they can and cannot see.
0iscuss!
,. How would this disability affect their everyday activities such as walking to school,
crossing streets, playing games, etc.?
0+S+*. D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 /%(3+.- ( 24+.D:*4D
When moving from place to place, blind persons may use a guide dog, a cane, and learn to pay
attention to a variety of environmental clues. .ometimes another person serves as a sighted
guide and functions as the eyes for the blind person. he sighted guide describes what is
around and in front of them. 1ne way to describe things is to relate ob<ects to the face on a
clock. For e=ample, in describing a plate of food say your meat is at 9 o clock, your potatoes
are at G o clock, etc. .ighted guides also need to describe noises and the source of the sounds.
5ach girl will need a partner. 1ne of the partners is blindfoldedL the
other is the sighted guide. Have the sighted guide take her partner
around the room or to another part of the building. Nisit the drinking
fountain, play a game, have refreshments, do a friendship circle, etc.
Have the partners change roles.
0iscuss the following activities!
,. Have the girls talk about how it felt to be blindfolded.
7. How did it feel to be the sighted guide?
9. What was helpfulL what was difficult?
?. 0evelop a list of suggestions for guiding and helping a person with a vision disability.
6irl .couts # :ile Hi %ouncil f!MptrainingMpMres.centerMhandoutsM0isability )wareness )ctivities.doc
") 3nited Way )gency$ 4ev. H?8HH N.8<c
&7;S+$(4 D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 D(+4; 4+0+.- S<+44S
) physical disability occurs when there is an impairment of the bones, <oints,
muscles, nerves, or misfunctioning spinal cord. ) physical disability can
affect how one moves, as well as how one speaks or writes.
alk with the girls about some of the things they do everyday that use their Blittle
muscles,C also known as fine motor skills. Include things done with muscles, <oints, and
bones "eating, writing, drawing, buttoning, shoe tying, teeth brushing, etc.$.
6ive each girl a piece of paper and pencil. .imulate a partial loss of hand
control by writing name and address with the non#dominant hand.
*e=t, pass out long strips of masking tape and have the girls tape their
thumbs and first two fingers to the palm of their dominant hand. ry shoe
tying, >ippers, buttons, cutting, turning pages, etc.
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
4esource %enter, 5)%%H -rogram Website, and 6irl .couts of )merica.
0iscuss
,. What made these tasks difficult?
7. What kinds of devices could have helped them?
4%(3.+.- D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 3%(D+.-
4eading is a skill that is necessary for almost every task in school. When a person doesnt
read well, its very difficult to succeed in school no matter how bright or motivated. )
reading disability is the most common type of learning disability. ry these activities to see
how it would feel to have a reading disability.
Hold a book up to a mirror. 4ead the book by looking in the mirror.
Hold a book upside#down and read it.
0iscuss!
,. 0id you have trouble reading?
7. 0id you use your fingers to keep your place?
9. 0o you know anyone with a problem like this?
?. How could you help a person with this problem?
@. What are some things a person with reading problems could do well?
D%0%4*&)%.T(4 D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 :*44*/+.- D+3%$T+*.S
) developmental disability occurs when there is a general slowing down in a personOs thinking
and learning abilities. Following directions may be difficult even for people with a mild
developmental disability because they may not learn as ;uickly or remember as much.
his activity will simulate developmental disabilities by changing some of the everyday words
to make it more difficult.
.tand in a circle and name three positions!
Hands in air P %)
Hands on waist P 016
Hands on thighs P FI.H
-ractice each motion a few times.
hen try! Hands on FI.H
4ight hand on FI.H, left hand on 016
4ight hand on %), left hand on 016
*ow give directions without doing them yourself. %omplicate them by adding standing one
leg, legs together, legs apart, etc.
0iscuss!
,. How the girls succeeded, but the e=ercise took a long time and lots of concentration.
7. What helped them to succeed?
9. How did they feel?
4%(3.+.- D+S(2+4+T+%S 8 /3+T+.-
) learning disability occurs when a person has problems processing information in order to
perform tasks which are generally related to learning. .ometimes a learning disability shows
up in the way people write. his activity will help girls understand how it feels to know how
something should look, but somewhere between the brain and the pencil, the information gets
mi=ed up.
Have each girl place a piece of paper on her forehead and write her name on the paper.
0iscuss the amount of concentration and e=tra time re;uired, the BlookC of the final product,
and how this e=ercise made them feel.
.ome of the girls will write their name backwards. alk about how they felt when they saw
what they had done. -oint out that the girls who wrote backwards did not reali>e, at the time,
that they were doing so.
Nariation! Hold the paper to your forehead with the hand you usually write with. Write with
the other hand. First write the word B>onker.C urn the page over and write your name.
Activities
+or a group o# 25-,- students
Here is a description of four different centers you can use. I
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
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recommend that you choose only three of the following at any
one time, to keep the program within a realistic time-frame
(45-! minutes".
#ine $otor Activity
. pairs o# large cloth garden gloves
. sets o# shoestrings and beads" each in a small tub
. sets o# hardware (nut" bolt" washer!" each in a small tub
/able with . chairs
$ach child wears the gloves and tries to string beads and assemble hardware%
'int0 +or 1-1 students" have them 2ust wear one glove and use large beads%
%isual Activity
. pairs o# sa#ety goggles
3ar o# petroleum 2elly (to smear on lenses o# goggles! or sandpaper to scratch
lens
. pencils and pads o# lined paper
4ooks at grade level
/able with . chairs
$ach child wear goggles (with obstructed view because o# petroleum 2elly or
scratched lenses!% /ry to write sentences on the lines and read the print in a
book%
'int0 5o not let children take o## goggles until they are done%
&erceptual and 'ensory ((actile" Activities
6oll o# masking tape and binoculars0
7lace a length o# tape on the #loor and have children walk on the line% 'ave
each child hold the binoculars on their eyes" backwards% /his causes
perception to be distorted%
8everal strips o# yarn" 9-#eet in length0
'ave child 2ump rope using the yarn" instead o# a rope% /his causes the
#eeling o# distorted perception o# the weight o# the &rope&%
:arden glove with ;elcro sewn on to inside o# #ingers and palm< and
= large hand#ul o# lambs-wool or a #eather duster0
>ou wear the scratchy glove and hold the so#t #eathers or wool% While children
are participating in the above activities" walk by and touch a bare arm%
8imulates unpredictable sensation on the skin (either too scratchy or
uncom#ortably so#t?!
Attention and 'ensory (Auditory" Activity
. pairs o# headphones hooked up to a @istening 8tation
Aassette tape o# static-noise or noisy crowd sounds
Worksheets at slightly higher grade level - reBuires concentration
. pencils
/able with . chairs
8tudents wear headphones and have to listen to noises in their ears% /hey
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Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
4esource %enter, 5)%%H -rogram Website, and 6irl .couts of )merica.
must complete the worksheets within a given time% 8imulates di##iculty
#ocusing on work while not being able to #ilter out distractions%
ST%& #: $elebration +deas
Have students research famous people with disabilities and report on their
accomplishments.
Have students read about students with disabilities and report on their
accomplishments.
Have students research the )mericans With 0isabilities )ct ")0)$ and
Individual with 0isabilities 5ducation )ct "I05)$ to find out how they help
people with disabilities.
I-. -rogram, /avaria 0.1, 2an 1sier
Sources of +nfor'ation: *ational Institute of 3rban .chool Improvement, Indiana
4esource %enter, 5)%%H -rogram Website, and 6irl .couts of )merica.