When is a consequence not a consequence? ABCs and more…

lenabellina

This morning I have read a superb piece by the ever-inspiring Nancy Gedge (@nancygedge) looking at behaviour management, staff emotions and mentioning the use of ABCs: https://www.tes.com/news/school-news/breaking-views/try-keep-your-emotions-check-when-teaching-children-send

I have great faith in ABCs but have seen some misunderstanding around the way they are used…so I decided to write something. I hope it may clarify a few things.

Zena is five years old. The rule in her school is that we keep hands, feet, objects and comments to ourselves. The consequence, if we break that rule, is that we spend five minutes on the naughty chair, facing the wall and away from our friends. One day Zena is sitting with her group threading beads. She has made a lovely blue and red pattern and needs one more red to finish. John reaches across her and takes the last red bead from the tray. She asks him for it but he refuses to give…

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Included or not?

lenabellina

Yesterday, @JulesDaulby got riled on Twitter and wrote the following:

“When QT wrote a blog claiming devil’s advocate I thought actually, the blog was not provocative just prejudiced and in extremely poor taste. So I wrote a rather ranty blog. I also questioned how ‘normal’ you have to be for mainstream a while ago.

What happened next though was better: the Titans of SEN began to respond – I’ve used this image before – over the brow of the hill came the voices and it made me feel proud.”

Whilst far from being a Titan, I have a few thoughts on all of this that I’d like to share.

I have worked with pupils with additional support needs for over 20 years. The work I have done has been as a teacher and a dramatherapist and the pupils have had mild to profound needs.

I was also brought up by parents…

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Traps

The Diary of a Not So Ordinary Boy

You know, the more I write about life with Down’s syndrome, the more I seem to be hedged about with difficult moral decisions. Leaving aside the fact that I write about my own child, whose dignity I must protect, it’s hard not to fall into the Traps of Cliché.

There’s the ‘cute kid with Down’s syndrome picture’ cliché. OK, I took some pleasure in the fact that Sam was such a good looking baby. People used to stop me in the street to tell me what a gorgeous little thing he was (I think he was busy catching eyes and batting his eyelashes). There were occasions when I thought of making a fortune out of him on the baby modelling circuit (and then I came to my senses when I read that ‘children must be able to take direction’ – none of my children, then!). There are lots pictures around…

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Debilitating Disease

The Diary of a Not So Ordinary Boy

Debilitating – to seriously weaken, to affect your strength or ability to carry on with regular activities. Usually associated with illness or disease.
(Cobbled together from various dictionaries.)

If there’s one thing I do get tired of, it’s the constant association in mainstream media – and therefore the mainstream consciousness – of Down’s syndrome with disease, suffering and generally having a terrible life. So, I thought I’d tell you about Sam’s week, and let you make up your own mind.

Monday – rode bike to school. It was kind of an ordinary day, but I needed my gloves and Mum got cross when I could only find one and Dad got cross when he couldn’t find any.

Tuesday – rode to school with a friend. Went to a college for an art activity, went swimming, went to youth club, hung around with my mates.

Wednesday – didn’t want to get…

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Antenatal Testing for Down’s syndrome

The Diary of a Not So Ordinary Boy

There is a new test for Down’s syndrome in the news again today. You can read about it here. It is non-invasive, so it will reduce the numbers of miscarriages following a screening test for Down’s syndrome. That’s a good thing, right?

We tell ourselves that screening is all about information. It’s about preparing ourselves for the future, going into it with our eyes open. I would normally go all around the houses to make a pinprick point, but not today.

Today there is no room for that. Today is a day for the truth.

We lie.

It’s not about preparation at all. If it was, the numbers of babies screened away would be lower. Wouldn’t it? Expectant mothers carrying a baby with an extra chromosome wouldn’t be offered a termination after 30 weeks’ pregnancy, would they? Doctors wouldn’t come to visit you with faces of tragedy when they give…

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Inclusion ( Insert definition here)

maryisherwood

inclusion
ɪnˈkluːʒ(ə)n/
noun
 1. the action or state of including or of being included within a group or structure.
“They have been selected for inclusion in the scheme”
Oxford Dictionary

Maybe I am slightly late to the party, however over recent weeks there has been alot of discussion on Twitter with regards to Inclusion of pupils with SEND in mainstream education and a number of blogs which have followed. I am grateful to @JulesDaulby for collating many of them on her blog site here: https://mainstreamsen.wordpress.com/

As I write this I am fully aware of how controversial and emotive this topic can be and how definitions of what ‘Inclusion’ actually is can vary so much, hence, as pondered what it meant to me, it led me to the title of this blog.

Time for me to put my two penneth in………………

I would personally like to approach inclusion from the perspective of…

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