Explaining to your child what a disability is can be quite challenging. It is a sensitive topic, you need to choose your words wisely and create an open dialogue with your child so they feel free to ask you anything. What you say in this conversation directly influences how your child will perceive others with disabilities. Here are seven things to keep in mind when you talk to your child about people with disabilities:
Children with disabilities are like all children, they have feelings they want friends, respect and to be included.
Life can be tough and everyone is trying to find themselves, especially children. They are easily impressionable and often wear their hearts on their sleeves. Words and actions can hurt, all children have the same wants to be included and respected. Teach your children to include all children including children with disabilities in conversation and games, they are no different than typical children and deserve not to be left out due to a disability.
Children can be born disabled or become disabled from illnesses or an accident. You cannot catch a disability.
A person does not choose to be disabled something had happened that is out of their control.
Just because someone has a physical disability does not mean they also have a cognitive (thinking) disability.
There many many different types of disabilities each affecting the body in different ways. Some may just be physical meaning they bodies may have problems when moving, others can affect their brain making speaking, school work and thinking difficult for them and some disabilities can be a combination of both. Children with disabilities can do most of the things other children do, it may take more assistance and more time. Be patient and help them!
Children with special needs are different and that’s not a bad thing.
Everybody is unique it is what makes us all so special in our own ways. If everyone was the same life would be pretty boring!
It’s okay to ask questions about disabilities. Knowledge is power!
Learning about different disabilities can help a child understand a personal situation better. Knowing how a disability can affect someone can allow you to help them more and be more empathic about situations.
Choose your words wisely When talking to your child choose your words wisely. The way to describe children with disabilities will influence the words your child uses to also describe disabilities. Make sure they are accurate and sensitive. Teaching them the correct words like special needs, disabilities, or even the names of specific disabilities like autism and down syndrome.
Be a friend. The best thing you can be is a friend.
What Is A Goal?
A goal is an object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result. Statistics say 92% of people never achieve their goals. This could be because they have not effectively planned their goals, and when you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
It is very important to teach your children how to plan and achieve their goals so they can get what they truly want in life.
What goal-setting teaches them:
- How to Stay Motivated
- Healthy habits
A simple way to start planning a goal is to fill out a SMART sheet. Fun fact! By writing your goals down you are 42% more likely to achieve them.
Is Your Goal SMART?
Do you know exactly what you want to achieve?
Can you track your progress? Being able to see progress is a great way to say motivated and stick to your goal.
Is the goal reasonable? Not something too hard such as climbing Mount Everest next Saturday or something to easy like
Is it important to you? Will it help you in the future? Something you are proud of?
When do you want this goal to be completed?
For example, your child wants to read Harry Potter books (Specific). How many books are in a series? (Measurable). Will they be able to read the books on their own or with some help? (Attainable). Are they interest in reading and the stories of Harry Potter? (Relevant) They want to read them before they get to a certain grade or perhaps the end of summer (Time).
Great goal setting activities for children would be; reading a chapter book, planting a garden or something as simple as organizing their toys.
How to Teach Goal-Setting
Determine the goal: Ask your child what they would like to do with questions like. What would you like to achieve this summer? What would you like to learn?
Discuss the purpose: Why would you like to do this? Will this help others? How will completing this goal make you feel?
Break the goal down into smaller steps. Write down the steps they need to take to achieve their goal. A flow chart is a great visual way they can track their progress.
Say they want to read a 14-chapter book on their own. Try reading a chapter a week, maybe an hour before bed. Ask them questions about what they are reading, what they like and dislike about the characters or stories. This is a simple way to encourage them to stay motivated.
Plan for obstacles. Things can and will happen, we can brainstorm what could possibly happen. What if they don’t have time to read some nights? Can they read for an extra half hour another night or twice as long on the weekend? What if they lose the book? We can look for it for a week, find it or borrow another copy from a library.
Talk about it! Telling others about your goals helps keep you on track. Others will ask you how your goal is going, what’s next and help keep you focused.
Monkey see monkey do: Children are great imitators and learn so much from their parents. If you verbalize your goals to your children try your best to follow through with them. If you told your child you are going to start walking more. Make a plan and follow through with it. They learn from seeing your plan and achieve your goals too!
Create group goals for the family and set out to achieve them as a family. For instance, you would like to do a 5k walk for a charity. You will need to find out when the event is, how much you would like to raise for the charity, how you will raise the money, what kind of training you will do and when you will do it. By planning out your 5k charity walk with your children they will see how much effort and reward there is in completing a goal. Completing goals as a family encourages teamwork, family bonding and creates beautiful memories.
I Want to Give Up!
Sometimes goals take time and children often want to see results now. They could feel discouraged because they are not progressing at the rate they want. If your child feels like giving up talk to them ask them why they feel this way. Remind them why they started, how important it was to them. Show them how far they have come and encourage them to keep going. If it is an obstacle in their way help them to overcome it, show them how they can improvise and problem solves to get over this hurdle. Sometimes all it takes is a bit of cheerleading to help reassure them that they are on the right path and can do it!
We Did It!
When they have completed a goal celebrate with them. If they finished the book have a movie night and watch the film version. Maybe have pizza, cake or a trip to the beach. Ask them how they feel, what challenges they faced and what they would have done differently. Hindsight is 20/20! It is a good learning exercise to reflect on what they have done, where they can improve and what they have learned.
Sometimes we aim for goals and we don’t quite achieve them. Say they wanted an “A+” on their science test but only reached a “B”. This is the time to teach them it is okay to fail and how they can learn from this and achieve their goals next time. A good trait to instill in a child is to be resilience. Yes, they will be upset they failed and that is okay! Talk to them about why they think they failed, where they can improve and what they plan on doing next time.
Digit is an introductory app to the world of numbers! Digits are the numbers 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 and 9! Discover who uses digits, what are digits, where do we use digits, when do we use digits and why we use digits.
Count along animations
Learn different counting styles
Real life-based visuals
20+ Onscreen and Voice over words to learn
No ads, no in-app purchases and does not require Wifi
All of our applications are free to download, free from advertisements, no internet required and do not have any in-app purchases.
These apps are designed for children 4-12 to complement their traditional education. Throughout this lesson, you will be asked a variety of questions about numbers, have time to think and they will be given the answer. We want to encourage children to dig deeper by asking questions like what if and why not.
Why do people Bully?
There are a million reasons why people choose to bully. Usually, the bully is trying to fill a void where they need to feel superior in some sort of way. They often pick a victim they think is emotionally or physically weaker than them, or is different from the social norm and an easy target. Often children that bully are reflecting the way have been treated at home or school.
We all have a role to play!
Bullying prevention starts at home, but teachers, principles, and organizations have a role to play too. If you notice your child acting out towards others or teachers are calling you about your child’s behavior, there are steps you can take to prevent your child from being a bully.
Make sure your child understands that what they do and say can impact others in a negatively and that their recent behavior is a problem.
Let your child know that bullying is very serious and will not be tolerated. When talking to your child about bullying use a calm tone and be an example of respectful behavior.
Talk to your child and see how their feeling. Try to find out why they may have been bullying in the first place. Were they trying to fit in at school? Are they picking up on emotions from home? Are they experiencing divorce? Do their siblings pick on them?
There are 7 skills bullies need in order to change
1. Responsibility-Being able to take responsibility for their actions.
2. Empathy-Understand how the other person may feel in that situation
3. Anger Management-Reduce episode of lashing out in a negative way
4. Impulse Control -Stop and think about what they are about to do or say
5. Self-esteem – Finding happiness within themselves
6. Inclusive -Being able to realize popularity isn’t everything
7. Respect –Realize everyone deserves to be respected
This article from very well family goes more in-depth about these skills and how to achieve them.
How can I support a child dealing with bullying?
Both the bully and victim need support after an episode of bullying.
Have an open conversation about what happened. Ask them how you can help to make them feel safe. Remind them that it is not their fault and that people often bully because they are unhappy with themselves.
Get them involved in activities to boost their self-esteem. Sports, music or crafting activities will help them find a place they feel comfortable making friends and improving self-worth. Let them know they have people they can talk to, and they are not going through this alone.
Never! Tell the child to ignore the bullying. Blame the child for being bullied. Encourage fighting back. Always tell your child to seek a teacher or friend while being physically bullied. Fighting back could hurt the child and result in punishment for them. Contact the other parents involved, this is the teacher’s job and could create future problems.
Talk it out! Where this is aggression coming from? Get them involved in activities to boost their self-esteem and socialize. People that are happy do not hurt others. Involve them in repairing the situation, have them write an apology. They will think more about their actions if they have to write it down.
If they broke or stole something, have them physically help fix what they broke or return what they took
Never! Blame the child or call them names. The child is clearly struggling with their own inner issues and that will only bring more negativity to the situation
Mind and body is an episode within W5Go’s Healthy Bodies mobile app. The app is free to download, no in-app purchases, no ads and does not require wi-fi making it a perfect education app for road trips.
Having a healthy body means taking care of your body inside and out! This episode covers the importance of Stretching, Aerobics, Strength & Mental Health. Learn how each topic helps the body stay healthy and strong. Join the W5Go kids in simple bodyweight exercises, learn body parts, play a sports memory game and more!
Having a healthy mind is equally as important as having a strong body. We want to help break the stigma of Mental Health by introducing children to the basics of having a positive mind. We talk about feeling sad and what to do when you feel sad, with simple breathing exercises, how to help feelings, a song about bullying and a simple quiz. Upon completing this episode, a child will have a basic understanding of mental health and how to cope with situations.
- Simple bodyweight exercises for children to follow along
- Fun animations, games, quizzes
- Breathing exercises
- Spelling and Pronunciation: On-screen text & voice over
- 20+ Fun Mind & Body Facts
Download Available Soon!