Tag Archive for: Therapy

Art and nature can play a significant role in the lives of individuals with additional needs, providing them with unique and valuable experiences. Here are some reasons why art and nature are important for individuals with additional needs: 

Expression and Communication: Art and nature offer alternative forms of expression for individuals who may struggle with verbal communication. Through art, such as painting, sculpting, or music, individuals can express their thoughts, emotions, and experiences. Nature, on the other hand, provides a serene and calming environment that can encourage relaxation and self-reflection. 

Sensory Stimulation: Many individuals with additional needs have sensory sensitivities or challenges. Art and nature can provide a multi-sensory experience that engages their senses in a therapeutic manner. The vibrant colors, textures, and sounds found in art and the natural world can stimulate sensory exploration and enhance their overall sensory integration. 

Emotional Well-being: Engaging in art and spending time in nature can have a positive impact on emotional well-being. Creating art allows individuals to explore their emotions and process their experiences. Nature, with its beauty and tranquility, can promote a sense of calmness, reduce stress levels, and improve overall mood. 

Skill Development: Art and nature provide opportunities for skill development and personal growth. Through artistic activities, individuals can enhance their fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and spatial awareness. Nature exploration promotes gross motor skills, balance, and coordination. Both activities encourage problem-solving, creativity, and critical thinking. 

Social Interaction and Inclusion: Art and nature can serve as platforms for social interaction and inclusion. Group art projects and nature-based activities provide opportunities for individuals with additional needs to engage with others, share their work, and collaborate. This fosters a sense of belonging and encourages social connections. 

Therapeutic Benefits: Art therapy and nature-based therapies are widely recognized for their therapeutic benefits. They can be tailored to meet the specific needs of individuals with additional needs, promoting self-awareness, self-esteem, and self-confidence. Engaging in these activities under the guidance of trained professionals can support their overall well-being. 

Personal Empowerment: Engaging in art and nature can empower individuals with additional needs by providing a sense of achievement and mastery. The process of creating art or connecting with nature allows them to develop a sense of agency and control over their environment. This empowerment can positively impact their self-image and overall quality of life. It is important to recognize and support the interests and abilities of individuals with additional needs when providing art and nature experiences. Creating inclusive and accessible environments that cater to their specific requirements allows them to fully benefit from the richness and therapeutic potential of art and nature.

These are just some of the reason we created “Celebration of Creation” an art experience for individuals with additional needs of all ages. Learn how you or your loved one with additional needs can take part here ANI’s “Celebration of Creation”.

As a parent with a child with additional needs my wife and are pleased with how our school has transitioned with our son’s virtual learning. We are also pleased how his virtual therapy sessions have gone. Even though this is going well, it has its challenges. We do feel that all of this screen time is affecting our son’s behavior in a negative way. To reduce the negative behaviors once the lessons are completed we make sure that electronics of any kind are put away for the rest of the day. That includes screen time with friends and family. With running Additional Needs, Inc. I read articles about our community on a daily basis, I have read over and over how difficult virtual learning is for the children and parents, and in some cases, children are still not receiving any services. For the families that are doing virtual learning many of them feel the school is doing what they can but because of the circumstances it’s not enough. We feel the same way. Even in our case we believe schools and therapists can’t replace in-person teaching and therapies with virtual teaching and therapies. Here are articles that make this point crystal clear. Because we must stay home at this time and do things virtually we’ve also added articles that help parents navigate virtual learning. 

Below are articles on how difficult virtual learning is for children with additional needs:

No one to help me’: Special education families struggle with coronavirus school closures via USA Today

Two senators — a Democrat and a Republican — urge Betsy DeVos not to gut special-education law but provide ‘narrow’ flexibility to school districts via The Washington Post

Coronavirus: Parents of children with special needs experience challenges with at-home education  via WYDAILY

Disability rights advocates urge Education Secretary DeVos to ensure special education students receive equal services via The Washington Post

How are we going to do this?’: Students with special needs could slip behind via MPRNEWS

Special education during coronavirus: What should parents tolerate, demand? via WHYY PBS

Coronavirus: Special education at home could set some kids ‘way back’  via Dayton Daily News

The Pandemic Is a Crisis for Students With Special Needs via The Atlantic

Online learning presents unique challenges for special education students and families via kxan

Here are articles to help parents with virtual learning:

8 Tips for Conducting Virtual IEP Meetings via edutipia

I’m Homeschooling 3 Kids With IEPs And 504s — Here’s How We’re Making It Work via Scary Mommy   

Iowa Parents Seeking Solutions for Special Education Learning at Home via 13 NEWS

Parents of special needs children need community support during the pandemic  via Nj.com

Here’s how Washoe County students with special needs are adapting to distance learning via NEWS 4

Educators Get Creative To Serve Students With Disabilities via npr

Through this experience we believe both the families and the teachers will have greater appreciation for one another.