Teachers are usually so focused on making sure the young children in their classrooms are physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy that this leaves little time to check in with their own physical, mental, and emotional state. While teachers are constantly advising children on how to regulate their emotions, they sometimes can forget to take their own advice! Cathryn O’Sullivan, EdM, author of School-to-Home Connections: Simple Strategies for Early Childhood Educators, shares quick self-care tips for teachers that they can do in their classrooms with their kiddos without having to think too deeply about implementation.
In her book, Naturally Inclusive: Engaging Children of All Abilities Outdoors, Dr. Ruth Wilson explains that inclusion for children of differing abilities means far more than physical access or physical presence; true inclusion includes instructional and social integration as well. Adaptations can be made to schedules, materials and/or equipment, the social and physical environment, the level of adult support, and in what is expected from the child. Consider the following examples of ways to adapt the classroom and teaching practices for children with special needs so teachers can focus on children’s strengths and interests.
Inclusion occurs when people with differing abilities are valued, viewed as contributing members of the group, and feel a sense of belonging. This list of books will benefit teachers and parents who want to support children of all abilities, foster inclusion, and help all children connect, grow, and thrive in their own unique ways.