Nidhi's Blog

A peek into my world

Ableism

on May 23, 2013

Ableism is a set of beliefs, processes and practices that produce- based on abilities that exhibits or values – a particular understanding of oneself, one’s body and one’s relationship with others of humanity, other species and the environment, and includes how one is judged by others. Ableism reflects the sentiment of certain special groups and social structures that value and promote certain abilities, for example, productivity and competitiveness, over others such as empathy, compassion and kindness.Sexism is partly driven by a form of ableism that favours certain abilities, and labelling of women as not having those certain necessary abilities is used to justify sexism and the dominance of males over females. Similarly, racism and ethnicism are partly driven by forms of ableism, which have two components, one favours one race or ethnic group and discriminates against others. Casteism, like racism, is based on the notion that socially defined groups of people have abilities that make them fit for specific duties and occupations. 

Oppression is also seen in the classroom. One way to alleviate disability stereotypes is the use of ability awareness in which students and teachers without disabilities take part in simulated activities regarding having a disability. School boards, curriculum committees, and textbook companies should include disability content into all aspects of the curriculum. Some schools have Buddy Clubs or other groups that are focused on integrating students with and without disabilities, these groups are not focused on disability culture and help students to know about each other and develop the sense of helping and making comfortable to each other. There are many books for children that have positive portrayals of characters with disabilities. Teachers should use books with disability themes in which students gain tolerance and respect for others. Teachers should also incorporate books with characters with disabilities into various aspects of the curriculum as well as book clubs and reading groups. Teachers should use films and other media, biographies of famous people with disabilities, and literature to examine role models for the students with disabilities as well as other members of the school community. School principals are responsible for preparing an individual action plan for each exceptional student. Teachers should also consult the parents of disabled students in order to know about their needs so that one should prepare their lesson plans as well as other activities in order to make the students more secure and comfortable in class. Parents should also take keen interest in children’s education and should visit the schools so that they became aware of their child’s progress. There should be proper parent- teacher meetings at regular intervals so that both of them discuss about the development of child and discuss about the problems, experiences as well as needs they require. People often have ignored larger issues such as ableism, believing that if they become better teachers and that if students learn new skills, then instructors will have done their job. However, these larger issues influence the lives of students with disabilities, and it is within the context of these larger issues that instructors try to influence a society that is often resistant to the changes they wish to make.

 

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4 responses to “Ableism

  1. Interesting post. This would be a great post to include links to where a person could learn more. I really hadn’t heard of ableism.

  2. Swati says:

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful post on Ableism. We can be sum up Abelism as the belief that it is better or superior not to have a disability than to have one In schools, when students with disabilities are often excluded, one can clearly see how influencing is ableism to guide us into doing this. The irony is that ableism is often overlooked. We struggle with the inclusions of students with disability overlooking ableism, which is deep rooted in the cultural assumptions about disability. It makes the world so unreachable for the students with disabilities.

    You can check out these links to get a deep insight into the subject :

    http://aapf.org/2007/11/combating-ableism-in-school/

    http://aapf.org/2007/11/combating-ableism-in-school/

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