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Special Needs

My Son's Disability Doesn't Make Me A 'Special Kind Of Person'

Mary Evelyn Smith | Posted 07.30.2014 | Parents
Mary Evelyn Smith

Believe me, I am not diminishing my work as a mother. I am not pretending that my son is just like everyone else. But when we glorify his friends, or his mother, or his one-day prom date, we imply that he is less-than.

Autism Parents Build Virtual Birdhouse for Others

Rabbi Jason Miller | Posted 07.29.2014 | Technology
Rabbi Jason Miller

Dani Gillman was a single mom in Metro Detroit with an autistic daughter, Brodie, who ran a popular blog detailing her daughter's challenges and succe...

South Africa's Missing Genius Children

Vashthi Nepaul | Posted 07.23.2014 | Impact
Vashthi Nepaul

Today I want to talk about 'a good education,' one of the priority areas for the United Nations My World Global Survey. But there is a specific segment of education which I believe is being overlooked to our detriment.

My Son's Rendition Of 'Let It Go' Will Change The Way You Think About Singing

Ellen Seidman | Posted 07.18.2014 | Parents
Ellen Seidman

Some people might listen and think that Max is just "trying" to sing. To them I'd say: change your definition of singing.

Data Is Key to Improving Outcomes for Students With Special Needs

Michele Jolin | Posted 07.11.2014 | Education
Michele Jolin

For far too long, we as a nation have set unnecessarily low education expectations for students with special needs, limiting their choices and opportunities for success.

For Special Needs Parents, Every Milestone Is Major

Ellen Seidman | Posted 07.08.2014 | Parents
Ellen Seidman

When Max walks, says a word, feeds himself, picks up an object, uses his pointer finger, reads a word, writes his name, climbs the stairs, goes to the bathroom or uses his iPad speech app, I'll suddenly be filled with gratitude that he is able to do what he does. I take none of it for granted.

How to Ask for Special Considerations When Traveling With Your Special Needs Child

Meg Harris | Posted 07.07.2014 | Travel
Meg Harris

It's such a sensitive subject and often embarrassing for parents to even ask, but sometimes so necessary. In a time where so many people are traveling and experiencing all that life has to offer it is hard for families with special needs children to participate. The lines are so long, the noise level can be through the roof and navigating through the millions of people can be overwhelming.

What If She Lives With Us Forever?

Ellen Stumbo | Posted 07.07.2014 | Parents
Ellen Stumbo

What I once feared so much is something I now would welcome with open arms. I enjoy my daughter, and the thought of having her around makes me smile.

June Is Aphasia Awareness Month: Learn About Childhood Apraxia of Speech

Laurie Levy | Posted 06.25.2014 | Impact
Laurie Levy

You may have heard of aphasia if you know someone who has had a stroke or brain injury. In public schools, how can we right the wrongs for children who can't even tell us they are happening?

To The Me Of 10 Years Ago

Phoebe Holmes | Posted 06.17.2014 | Parents
Phoebe Holmes

You will learn to be a fighter. You will find strength you never realized you had and overcome your fear of confrontation. You do this because not doing this is not an option. That baby girl needs you to be this way. And you're not about to let that girl down.

How a Plane Ride Changed My Daughter's Life

Meg Harris | Posted 06.17.2014 | Parents
Meg Harris

Airplanes have always been a huge source of delight for my daughter Eliza, who was born with Atypical Rett Syndrome. So you can only imagine Eliza's thrill when she recently took her very first commercial flight to NYC.

Summer Camp for a Child With Special Needs: Learning New Things, Meeting New Friends and Trying Something You Never Tried!

Marla Murasko | Posted 06.12.2014 | Parents
Marla Murasko

A lot of camps may encourage inclusion for children with special needs to take part in their camp activities with their typical peers.

Celebrating All of the Dads With Special Needs Children

Meg Harris | Posted 06.12.2014 | Parents
Meg Harris

I recall feeling envious of his ability to just be one with her. We were both first-time parents with very little experience with babies. While I sat thinking, Will he drop her? Is she OK? He quietly slept as though he'd been holding her in his arms forever. It was a beautiful moment.

Why We Put This Little Girl On Our Magazine's Cover

Sasha Emmons | Posted 06.10.2014 | Parents
Sasha Emmons

You would never know this kid struggles with heart problems and has been through three eye surgeries. Sitting on our set, clapping her hands and bobbing to Pharrell's "Happy," she was the picture of pure glee.

Why A Rhinestone Bracelet Meant The World To My Daughter And Me

Meg Harris | Posted 06.09.2014 | Parents
Meg Harris

I think it is important for us as parents of special needs children to realize that the world is catching on -- that others are opening their hearts to these amazing children and their families.

The Supreme Court Takes a Stand on the Term 'Mental Retardation'

Ellen Seidman | Posted 06.05.2014 | Parents
Ellen Seidman

Using more neutral terminology to describe a person with intellectual disability, when they need to be described at all, is just one more way to respect them. Not the only way, of course; just one. An easy one.

Saying Goodbye to Class

John M. Simmons | Posted 06.03.2014 | Parents
John M. Simmons

My son wasn't very old when we realized that one of his greatest talents was to be able to make people feel loved and happy. When that is combined with people who like to see Jack feel loved and happy, magic happens.

A High Mountain to Climb: Finding Employment for People with Disabilities and Special Needs

Chris Barrigar | Posted 06.03.2014 | Business
Chris Barrigar

There appears to be a significant gap in the efforts of socially-concerned businesses, namely providing employment for those with disabilities or special needs.

Special Needs Family Travel

Meg Harris | Posted 05.29.2014 | Travel
Meg Harris

As a child I was blessed with the gift of travel. My family traveled extensively, all across the globe and I wanted to give this gift to my own two ch...

Why This Is One Of My Favorite Photos Ever

Shanell Mouland | Posted 07.29.2014 | Parents
Shanell Mouland

If you had asked me what Kate's greatest sensory discomfort was, I would have said it was related to her hair. Until today, she did not let us brush her hair and a proper haircut was out of the question. Then something changed.

Celebrating Milestone Birthdays in a Special Needs Family

Rebecca Gallagher | Posted 07.23.2014 | Parents
Rebecca Gallagher

For the disabled, the developmentally challenged, a big birthday is sometimes a bitter sweet reminder of the years and years of struggle and toll it's been on a family. To all of you parents out there celebrating the milestone birthday's of your special children, I salute you with all my heart.

A Letter To The Mom Who Stared At My Child With Special Needs

Ellen Seidman | Posted 07.23.2014 | Parents
Ellen Seidman

I notice the stare-glares every single time, and a mix of emotions runs through me: Fury. Distress. Heartache for my son. And confusion: What exactly is the problem here?

As Long As It's Healthy.... But What If It's Not?

Sarah Watts | Posted 07.20.2014 | Parents
Sarah Watts

We're talking about our children -- an arrangement that's supposed to be unconditional -- and as long as they're healthy! is alarmingly conditional. Everyone's happy for a new baby and congratulations are in order -- but only under certain criteria. Right?

A Letter to Judgy McJudgerson About the iPad Potty

Sarah Watts | Posted 07.19.2014 | Parents
Sarah Watts

Know what I think? This thing is freaking great. It's a masterpiece. Potty training is hard, with a bowel program or without, and whatever keeps your kid socially continent and potty-trained before they go to kindergarten, I'm all for.

Verbal Doesn't Mean What You Think It Means

Shanell Mouland | Posted 07.13.2014 | Parents
Shanell Mouland

I don't mind the questions, I really don't. I just want to clarify a few things.