5th Grade Understanding Our Differences

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5th Grade Understanding Our Differences 

On November 13, the Physical Disabilities unit of the Understanding Our Differences program was presented to the 5th grade. Students learned about how people with physical disabilities face architectural and attitudinal barriers. We learned about concepts of universal design and assistive technology as means of addressing architectural barriers. We also discussed sharing commonalities, building communication skills, and taking personal responsibility for actions to help prevent the isolation of peers with disabilities. They were enthusiastic to meet Dan Cummings who answered all of their thoughtful questions. Dan's story of his return to walking after a serious neck fracture is inspiring. Despite his ongoing disability he founded Journey Forward (journey-forward.org) which helps other people with serious spinal cord injuries. I would like to thank our volunteer team of Jessica Gilmartin, Elizabeth Benedict, Susan Fabry, Hongtao Guo, Mary Lee Gwo-Shu, and Jade McNeil. I would also like to thank Ms. Belcher, Mr. Benson, Ms. Broder, Ms. Packard and our principal Ms. Peller for their support.
Our next Understanding Our Differences unit for the 5th Grade is on Intellectual Disabilities on Thursday January 16, 2014. The final unit for the 5th Grade on Autism Spectrum Disorders is on Thursday March 6. 2014. Please email me at lsbailen@gmail.com if you are interested in volunteering for these units. 


For more information: www.understandingourdifferences.org.
Laurence Bailen
5th Grade Coordinator, Understanding Our Differences