How to care for children with special needs
All kids want to believe they have a place in the world, a normal place, not a special place.
If a child is treated differently, they’ll feel different and act different. So how do you take that fact and make a child that is a little different feel at peace with their world? If you are interested in finding out how to care for children with special needs, reading about our tips below could prove beneficial. You can deepen your knowledge to care the young children in your life by developing this skillset with Foundation Education’s Education and Care courses.
Focus on their strengths
Whether we’re friends, parents, brothers, sisters, cousins, carers or teachers, we have a job to do. Let’s say a child has a physical disability when it comes to sport. Let them try if they want, but don’t force the issue and, whatever you do, don’t make fun of how they do or don't perform.
Instead, steer them towards activities they can do or even excel at. A child with reading disabilities could be a genius on the piano.
Have a Plan A and a Plan F
And every plan in between. Whether it’s a physical or emotional challenge, it will continue to challenge and the real challenge is with you. If you strike a snag, untangle it quickly and move on as fast as you can.
The key to progress isn’t so much about success; it’s about building a road dotted with achievements. It’s up to you to play navigator on that road so your child moves quickly past the dead ends and speed bumps and views the new direction ahead with a smile.
Don’t forget, you’re the face of progress your child looks to if they need feedback on how they’re going. If that face is apprehensive or the body below it is speaking a frustrated language, you’ll either confirm doubts or sabotage any growing belief.
Be creative with your signals
Some kids struggling with the everyday challenges of life might also struggle with everyday English. So create some special ones; visual cues or otherwise.
No joke, singing instructions is a sure-fire way to get attention and can work wonders. As can whistling or just plain old sign language. It doesn’t have to be a real language; it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else. If it says all the right things to your child, that’s all that matters.
Be all you were yesterday today
This is hugely important. Whatever you did today will still be special tomorrow and, for your child’s sake, you can’t suddenly depart from that. Yes, you might have spent the night Googling and come up with a grand new plan, but it won’t be grand at all when you start doing things differently.
In fact, it can undermine everything you’ve done before. Kids who don’t see the world the way we do can react pretty badly if the world you’ve given them clouds over even slightly.
Resist the temptation to be proactive. It might get you brownie points in the corporate world, but in your child’s world, it’s a military coup.