As a child. Growing up there was never much attention brought to the special needs population. From what I can remember there was always the class for the “typical children” and class for what they called at the time. “Special Education” & it was one of those topics no one really wanted to discuss. Not even from teachers. It was the subject topic EVERYONE literally tried to avoid, or explain. Almost like quickly sweeping dirt under the rug, hoping that no one will lift the carpet to unveil the dust you’ve be avoiding to pick up. I never really understood why the two was separate. But at that age I didn’t really question it either.
Now i finally realize how important it would have been for my generation, as well as generations before me to gain exposure in an all-inclusive classroom. & No, I’m not referring to a class room that would be equipped what all the best amenities and goods galore. I’m referring to the interaction in which many individuals; Both with or without a disability are equally embraced in the same learning environment. In this article Inclusion: Doing Our Best for All Children it clearly defines what it means to have an inclusive/integrated classroom. It highlights how inclusion shapes our youth, and teaches a life lesson that can only be taught through experience. Inclusion is a melting pot. And everyone contributes to it’s success. Parents, teachers, specialist and our children.
Inclusion filled me with so much insight. It taught me understanding, and patience in its purest form. It taught me that we are all capable of anything when we all work collectively. And I can say I have seen the same growth within the children I encounter every day. & I absolutely love it.
In the classroom children show the understanding to their classmates that has a special need; willingly taking the time to help. To scoop peas on their friend’s plate for them, or to volunteer to be the door holder. It’s an action that they yet can’t explain, nor do they know the terminology that used to the describe their environment. But what I can say is that their everyday classroom experience is the life they know. It is true and non-judgmental. It’s the life they have adapted to. & as their teacher. Knowing that they learn from one another, and they love to play together,build relationships and just have fun!Is what makes my job a thousand times worth it. The individual growth and respect for one another is what makes inclusion one of the best interactions for children.