Inclusive Classroom Bookshelf Sets
When planning for an inclusive classroom, just like planning for a culturally diverse classroom, it is important to find children’s books for the classroom library that reflect and value children with varied abilities and disabilities. It is also important to have age-appropriate books on hand that can help children learn about the special needs that their friends deal with on a daily basis. These EC bookshelves offer many great options.
Helping Children Understand Disabilities
The joys of an inclusive classroom are many. Everyone benefits. But questions can arise that can be difficult for the adults to explain clearly and simply. What details are important enough to mention? How much is too much? Children’s books can be a helpful resource when they explain a disability in positive ways that children can understand. The stories can spark conversations that will broaden understanding and strengthen social skills. Inclusive Children's Stories
One way children begin to feel as though they are an integral part of a group is by seeing themselves (or children like them) in books, posters, and other materials used in the classroom. The National Association of Educators of Young Children has for many years required accredited programs to provide books showing diversity, and most educators make every effort to reflect diversity in the children’s books used in the classroom.
However, much of this diversity in children’s books represents cultural, language, and ethnic differences rather than differences in mobility, vision, hearing, and learning. It is important to broaden our idea of diversity as we seek to provide inclusive early educational settings for children with disabilities. Toward that end, this set of books includes stories and images of special needs who are “just one of the crowd.” The books treat the children matter-of-factly, without the goal of educating children about one disability or another. Books of this type are not available in huge numbers, so to help teachers, here are a few good stories that include children who have Down syndrome, have vision issues, or use a wheelchair to move about.