“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
― Dalai Lama XIV
Can we teach compassion to our children? Can we help them understand the unique needs of a friend with special needs? Yes. Parents do have a role to play at how well their children behave with their peers with special needs – either with ridicule and fear or with kindness and the same regard as their other friends without special needs.
It may help children to understand that there are different kinds of disabilities. While it is easy to identify a kid with a physical disability, a learning disorder may not be identifiable at a single glance. Only after some observation or spending time with that person, you can know if someone suffers from an intellectual disorder.
Parents can help their children understand that a disability doesn’t define a person but her values do. Ask your child to include her classmates with special needs in games and invite them for birthday parties or just to play. According to care.com, ‘Share any concerns with the other parent. Parents of children with disabilities will often be happy to facilitate a successful play date or outing.’ It can also be helpful to answer your child’s queries about disabilities.
Sensitising children to special needs is not always for peers. It could also be about a sibling. A compassionate attitude will also help as your child enters the adult world and meets people from all walks of life.
For more on this topic, you can read the articles in this ClipBook.
Just as you have guided your young child when he or she began to befriend others, you can also encourage your child how to be a friend to children who have disabilities.
Kids need to understand that a disability is only one characteristic of a person. Everyone has strengths and challenges, wants and needs. Children with disabilities are like all children in that they want friends, respect, and inclusion.
Here are 15 great books that you can read to your child or that can be taught in the classroom that will help explain special needs to children.
Want a child who really, truly cares about others? Follow this advice on raising compassionate children from experts and parents.
If your child hasn't already encountered a person with a disability, it's likely he will at some point in school, where children with special needs are often in the same classroom with other kids. Be ready: Your curious grade-schooler will probabl...
Parents are all over the board when it comes to how they teach their kids about disabilities. Some scold their kids when they ask what’s wrong when a person with a disability passes by, and other parents are totally cool with letting their kids ru...