The importance of the kindergarten for the development of special children was discussed during an online seminar by the director of a pre-school for children with special needs ‘Child With Future’ Natalia Struchek. The video can be viewed on our website and Youtube channel.
Natalia Struchek emphasizes the importance for inclusion preparation, because many teachers do not know how to work with special children in a school setting. They do not have the knowledge, skills, or time with 30 students in class.
Often, a child with special needs officially attends school, but in reality they are learning at home, individually, or in segregated classes. That is not inclusion.
“There are many cases when a child is not ready for school yet, and their behavior does not correspond to school rules. For example, they cannot ask to go to the toilet, sit at their desk, or communicate verbally or otherwise. The child may be sensory overwhelmed and unable to participate in the lesson or playtime. Children need to be prepared to prevent this,” explains Natalia Struchek.
She told a story about a child who was expelled out of kindergarten. That boy had a hard time around other children: they overwhelmed him, and he reacted aggressively. He could not communicate his needs, and did not understand what the teachers wanted from him. His parents brought him to pre-school for children with special needs ‘Child With Future’. After a few months, he was able to return to the regular kindergarten. It was the same one he was previously expelled from. The teachers were delighted with how much his behavior had changed. And all because he had a chance to learn in a supportive environment!
Natalia Struchek emphasized that a child should know basic everyday skills and be ready for the school load. Only then going to school will be beneficial rather than detrimental to their development.
On the pages of the anniversary edition of ‘Autism Today’ you can find links to online seminars, interview with the founder of a charity organization, and the story of an autistic woman who destroys myths.