Welcome to the 21st issue of The Bigger Picture!
Last week, we debuted a new feature for our blogs: Hide & Speak! (I’ll be hiding a theme phrase that deals with IL and disability in these blog posts. If you spot it, speak about it by leaving it in the comments below and tell us what you think about it! You’ll have to come back to next week’s blog to see if you got it right.) Did you guess it right last week? Well, here’s the answer:
Besides just rhyming and being a catchy phrase, Disability Visibility means not hiding disability (and everything that comes with it) behind a curtain, or tucking it away in movies or TV just for inspiration for people without disabilities. Visibility is defined as “the ability to see or be seen; the quality or state of being known to the public”. When you couple that with “disability”, it’s an easy concept to grasp…but not so easy to put into practice. One group trying to keep Disability Visibility going is The Disability Visibility Project. You can click here to see how you can participate in their ongoing project to record the history of disability!
Kathy Baker found the phrase last week, and here’s the comment she left: “All three items carry the disability visibility and they are all great! Meaningful conversations start off this way. Just because someone doesn’t have a visibile disabilty doesn’t mean that they aren’t affected by something that makes everyday living a challenge.”
Read carefully, you may catch the theme phrase for this week! If you do, tell us about it in the comments below!
Discovery Gymnastics Helps Special Needs Children Gain Athletic Skills
(I just love it when we get to share a story from local news!) Discovery Gymnastics is an athletics program for children with developmental disabilities at the Rome Aerials Gymnastics Center. This is a wonderful program, entering its second year, that helps make gymnastics accessible to children with disabilities. You can read more at Rome News Tribune’s website here.
Why Young Adult Fiction Needs to Embrace Disability
Fiction books for young adults has boomed as an industry in the last few years, with the popularity of many of these books elevating them to become blockbuster movie hits across the world. But many people see a big hole in these stories that needs to be filled by characters with disabilities. Tying back to last week’s topic of disability visibility, The Guardian brings us an article about the need to include more characters with disabilities in youth reading materials.
Back-to-School Severe Weather Preparedness from NOAA
Emergency preparedness is not just for adults! This week, NOAA, the National Weather Service and the Weather-Ready Nation are presenting a lot of information via social media about severe weather for children, in time for the back-to-school season. We here at NWGACIL take emergency preparedness for people with disabilities very seriously, and that goes for our youth with disabilities, too! We know that part of Independent Living is being able to care for yourself in times of dangerous weather. Here are some great links to help youth learn more about severe weather preparedness, brought to you by Owlie Skywarn!
Owlie Skywarn’s Weather-Ready Kids Page: Owlie brings you a wealth of games and interactive pages to help youth learn more about severe weather!
JetStream Online School for Weather: A resource to help people of any age learn more about weather and its complexities. Features a daily weather activity, lesson plans and more for educators or parents!
American Red Cross’ Masters of Disaster: American Red Cross has developed a wealth of information to assist educators in utilizing a curriculum to educate their youth on severe weather.
Be sure to leave us a comment below if you spotted this week’s Hide and Speak theme!