Physical and Health Disabilities
What is a physical or health disability?
Division of Health and Physical Disbilities
- Impairments the affect the limbs or muscles
- Conditions caused by damage to the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord)
- A long lasting condition that can be controlled but not cured.
- Can be passes from person to person. Sometimes can be cured, but not always.
Types of Physical and Health Disabilities
Spinal Cord Disorders
- Multiple Sclerosis
Muscular/ Skeletal Impairments:
- Skeletal Disorders
Congenital Heart Defects
Sickle Cell Anemia
- STORCH Infections
Living With a Physical Disability
Living With a Health Disabiltiy: Childhood Cancer
Accommodations /Modifications at School
Make schedule more flexible
Extend due dates for complex assignments
Substitute word processing for handwriting
Alternative settings for test taking
Improve classroom traffic patterns
Provide safe and secure place to store AT devices
Special or adapted pencils
Book holders and page turners
- Adapted computer keyboards
For children who have trouble holding onto things due to physical disabilities may need assistive devices. Using an adaptive keyboard, or pencils will allow them to write easier.
For children that have physical disabilities who have trouble walking, and elevator would be helpful when their are multiple floors to the school.
For children who have a health disability may miss some school for doctors appointments, therefore extending time on projects and classwork could be helpful for these students.
Modifications and Accommodations at Home
The use of technology in the classroom can be carried on to the home environment, especially for students with physical and health disabilities who can’t always make it to school because of a severe illness.
Distance Technology, or accessing general curriculum with technology at home or hospital, can be achieved through…
Establishing communities of practice
Skyping lectures and class discussions
- Creating virtual classrooms (i.e.. Blackboard)
Using the internet can allow for a child to keep up with the work that they are missing at school. The teacher can communicate with the student and the parents through email and social media if needed. It is very important for parents to try to stay involved in what the child is learning so that they can help their child with the material and ask the teachers questions and stay up to date. Students who miss a lot of class and need to rely on catching up through the internet may rely on the help of their parents.
If a child with a physical disability has to use a wheelchair, then the parents can help their child practice moving around tighter areas and maneuvering in the wheel chair so that they feel more comfortable doing it at school.
If a child has a physical or health disability, the parent and the child can brain storm a list of strategies or accommodations that might help them do better at school. Sharing this list with the teacher may create a mutual trust relationship. Therefore the teacher might try to incorporate the list into her teaching for that child to better accommodate them.
Learning About Physical Disabilities
Learning About Health Disabilities
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- Infectious diseases. (n.d.). Retrieved May 6, 2015, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/infectious-diseases/basics/definition/con-20033534
- Smith, D., & Tyler, N. (2014). Introduction to contemporary special education: New horizons. Boston: Pearson Education.
- What is chronic disease? (2011). Retrieved May 6, 2015, from http://cmcd.sph.umich.edu/what-is-chronic-disease.html