Your articles open the eyes of the staff that I work with. Keep up the passion you have for this. Systems change happens a little at a time, but we will spread the word. Many people have responded to your insights, telling me they had never before viewed people with disabilities in the light you shine upon the issues.
Jim, person with a disability and professional in the field, Nebraska
This LEARN page features a sampling of our articles. Find articles on specific topics on these pages:
There are many ways we can make this world a better place. Check out these ideas!
People's real-life experiences often provide the most valuable of lessons.
Regular Lives for Families with Children with Disabilities features yours truly, Kathie Snow, speaking about a variety of topics in 22 video clips, provided by the MN Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities.
Hierarchy of Insults
"Idiot," "crazy," and "retard" are some disability descriptors that have been turned into insults. What does this say about attitudes about disability and what can we do about it? Each of us can do our part!
Dear Teachers and IEP Team Members
If you’re a special ed director, principal, general or special ed teacher, school psychologist, therapist of any kind, or serve in any other professional capacity on an IEP (Individualized Education Program) Team, this is for you.
Moral Imperative of Inclusion
The Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision deemed separate educational facilities to be illegal and "inherently unequal." Yet many people with disabilities are still in separate facilities. Inclusion isn't just a legal issue, but a moral and ethical one, as well.
Many individuals with disabilities develop wonderful compensatory abilities, which may be invisible to—and ignored by—others. What might happen when we begin to see these abilities?
Quality of Life
Many children and adults spend years receiving therapies and interventions in order to achieve "quality of life." But is there a definition of quality of life we can all agree on? And can one person measure the quality of life of another? Let's think about this…
Many of us are concerned about the safety of children and/or adults with disabilities. The solution, we think, is to hover and protect, and/or ensure people are in sheltered, safe environments. But is that really the solution?
What If Everything We Thought We Knew Was Wrong?
This happened to me! Over the past 26 years, I've learned powerful, life-changing lessons from the true experts: people with disabilities (including my own son, Benjamin). They've helped me learn that much of what society believes is erroneous. In the articles on our site, in my books and presentations, and in the products at our Online Store, I share what I've learned from the true experts and hope their lessons are valuable to you!
LEARN! Articles to Download and Share
LEARN AND ENJOY!
Explore a variety of featured articles below on new ways of thinking, attitudes, language, strategies, and more. On a regular basis, we'll provide a fresh batch! Check out the helpful articles on the People First Language page, too.
To see and alphabetical listing of all of our articles, please visit the Library page.
Activity-Based Goals = Success
Many "special ed" goals may be inappropriate, meaningless, and irrelevant. (Ditto the goals written for adults.) So is it any wonder when the goals are not achieved? Activity-based goals are the solution!
What might it feel like to be a child on the receiving end of the special ed process? Annie's story can help us understand.
A young man with a disabilities issues the "call" to children and adults with disabilities: "Get out there and take your rightful place in society!”
Creating a culture of caring—in our homes, schools, and other environments—will also create a more welcoming, inclusive society for all..
In the Dance of Relationships: Who's Leading and Who's Following?
A relationship is like a slow dance: one person leads, the other follows. In our relationships with people with disabilities who should lead and who should follow? Whose life is it, anyway?
Are "disability awareness" strategies effective? Focusing on differences can unintentionally reinforce prejudice, but targeting the similarities of people with and without disabilities can dismantle attitudinal barriers!
Life is Not a Dress Rehearsal
"Not ready" is a familiar refrain used about children and adults with disabilities. But is it accurate? Is it fair? Is it the standard we apply to people without disabilities? People with disabilities are "ready"—right now!
Fact or Opinion?
People in positions of authority make decisions—sometimes life-changing decisions—about people with disabilities. But what if those decisions are based on opinions, not facts?
Every day, others may model our words and actions. The outcomes may be for good or for ill. Is it time to be more careful, thoughtful, and deliberate before we act or speak? And what influence can this have on our society at large?
New Ways of Thinking and Revolutionary Common Sense