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Discussion: developmental disability

An animated video, highlighting the interaction between impairment and barriers in a child's environment, creating the experience of disability.
VOICEOVER: Children with functional differences can face barriers to participation in everyday activities and community living, as they interact with a potentially restrictive environment. These barriers can result in social exclusion, which may leave a child feeling isolated and alone. Exclusion can limit a child’s opportunities to learn and experience new things, have fun and play, which may affect their ongoing development. Barriers to participation can occur in a number of different situations, whether at home, at school, or within communities, unless a child is supported. By developing strategies to help children overcome these difficulties, we encourage our society to be more inclusive and enable children to participate without restriction, allowing them the opportunity to develop and reach their potential.

In the video above, we have seen our case study character Mai face challenges in her everyday life as a result of her impairment and its interaction with barriers in her environment. By being creative and recognising the individual needs of Mai, her teacher and classmates helped support her to participate more actively in everyday life.

Now it’s time to think about children with developmental disabilities in your setting.

  • What environmental barriers may children with developmental disabilities face in everyday life? Think about the environmental barriers, informational barriers and attitudinal barriers discussed by Professor Tom Shakespeare in the previous step.
  • What would help children with developmental disabilities overcome these barriers and allow them to participate on an equal basis with non-disabled peers?
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Integrated Healthcare for Children with Developmental Disabilities

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