Physical Disabilities

in the Classroom

What are Physical Disabilities?

  • Physical disabilities are the partial or total loss of some bodily parts or functions.
  • They can be disabilities that occur due to natural causes (cerebral palsy, multiple-sclerosis, arthritis) or disabilities that are causes by accidents or injuries (amputation, post-polio syndrome, acquired spinal injury).
  • These disabilities can occur on their own or accompany other disabilities or disorders.
  • They range in severity and can affect individuals in different ways, so no two individuals with physical disabilities are the same.

How can Physical Disabilities affect our students?

  • Students with physical disabilities have lower rates of participation in extracurricular activities, so often, even without additional "disabilities", their social skills may be impaired. It can be difficult for them to interact effectively with others, or find the desire to do so.
  • Other students may not understand the disability, or how to interact with them, so they are often left out or even become the target of bullying.
  • Physical Disabilities can make even the smallest tasks difficult or painful, so students may become discouraged or be unable to participate in some activities independently.
  • Students with Physical Disabilities may need wheelchairs or assistive technology, so certain places may not be suitable for them- field trips and other similar events can make things hard for them.

How can I, as a teacher, help these students?