Message from the Executive Director

Perspectivei22j "Being prepared when treating your child"

@This time, I will write about being prepared when treating children in everyday situations. A child, whether with or without intellectual disabilities, has will, emotions, and an inner world as an individual. The foundation is the same.
We as adults, just need to give more consideration to a child with intellectual disabilities, because their expressions are weak or indirect.

E When speaking to a child, we always check what they are doing before calling out their name. A child can almost always hear even if they donft turn around or reply. We try to speak to them while being aware of their will, uncertainties, and anxieties.
E We pay attention not to leave them out of the loop, because they also listen to conversations between adults. We try to speak to them, gItfs `, isnft it?h and let them join the conversation.
E We are careful about physical punishment and not frightening them by speaking to them. When we need to stop their actions, we hold the whole body to stop them while speaking to them, instead of suddenly pulling their clothes from behind or taking them away aggressively.
E When we invite a child to do something, we ask their intention. We see actions such as not responding, turning their head away, slapping our hand away, or getting upset as an expression of gNOh. We donft push a child to do things and ask them respectfully when needed.
E When we need to tell a child something, we try to show an attitude or expression that they can be willing to listen to and explain not only with words but with the real thing, a picture, or a photo as needed.
E When we canft keep a promise or misunderstand, we apologize properly.
E When we leave somewhere, because we have to do something or go to the bathroom, we tell the child so as not to give them cause for anxiety.
E We pay attention to a childfs gaze and change in facial expression and try to understand their interests and level of interest.
E We try to walk shoulder-to-shoulder, instead of walking ahead or following a child. (Either way, you canft see their facial expressions!) We put our hand out instead of grabbing a childfs wrist or pulling their hand unilaterally, and allow them to hold our hand with trust.

@If we carefully observe a childfs daily behaviors, we can see they are listening to adult conversations more than we imagine and watching how we behave. Looking over at us, walking around us, letting out their voice suddenly in response to our conversation, and going away, etc.c These behaviors are easily overlooked.

@When a child has disabilities or delays in development, we assume that they donft understand when we say something. Therefore we often decide things without them unilaterally or say something to hurt their feelings without realizing. No matter how good the training or coaching is, we believe that a child wishes that we, adults rethink our way of understanding and relating to the child

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