I just added a new blog to the side. It's a coworker/friend of mine who recently started writing about his kids. He adds an interesting perspective and first hand knowledge about raising 2 kids with special needs. It's definitely worth taking a moment to click into it and see what he has to say.
This topic has been specifically interesting to me as of late because Ella is in an inclusion classroom. If you're not familiar with this concept, it's a classroom that combines general education kids (like Ella) with special education kids. There are 4 kids in special ed and 14 kids in general ed in her classroom. At the very beginning of the year, Ella didn't think much of the fact that there were 2 teachers in her classroom and that some of the kids were assigned to one and some were assigned to another. Once the school year started trucking along, she began to pick up on differences between the two sets of kids. I don't think that she completely understands and I find it difficult to explain to her in terms that she can understand. There were probably some kids in her class in special ed last year when she was in kindergarten but the gap is much more pronounced this year because the kids are learning at such a rapid pace. Also, her inclusion classroom is a looping classroom. This means the entire class will stay together along with the same teacher for both first and second grade.
Does anyone have any input on how to help Ella understand differences in others? I'm looking for books I could read to her, books I could read, or another reference on how to deal with this topic. I googled to find kids books but most of what I found was either on Down's syndrome or autism. I want something a little more generalized than that.
Most importantly, I don't ever want her to be the kid that makes fun of others. Knowing her kind heart and sweet nature, I don't think this would ever be an issue but I want to address it before it becomes a issue. I'd love any advice on the topic.