You may have noticed some new files in the August 2019 curriculum downloads. We’re excited to offer more resources to support the children with special needs in your ministry. We know that as you work to reach all families, there often needs to be some customization to your environments, messaging, and activities when considering the experience of a child with special needs.
Steps for Adapting Curriculum
The Steps for Adapting Curriculum document is a resource on how to refine what we create and provide through the monthly curriculum. We know that will look very different church-to-church and child-to-child. The First Look and 252 Kids versions of this document provide broad steps, tips, and suggestions for accommodating the individual needs of the children in your environments. With some time and resources, you can use these suggestions to guide you towards individualizing the church experience for each child with special needs in your ministry.
Small Group Activities Edited to Include Special Needs Adaptations
We’ve taken the Small Group activities in the curriculum and viewed them through the lens of a child with a disability who is attending the Small Group environment with his/her peers and might find difficulty completing the activity as-is. You can think of these adaptations as similar to what you might find an inclusion classroom teacher doing to adapt the curriculum to account for different learning levels and abilities. Sometimes a simple change such as creating choices, using visuals, breaking up multi-step directions, etc. can have a felt impact. These adaptations are meant to work best for children in the Small Group environment with their peers—either with a volunteer buddy or on their own.
Thank you for serving to connect all kids to God. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14, NIV) The extra time, effort, and resources you spend to create a great experience for children with special needs allows them to experience God’s family and communicates that they too are made in the image of God.
If you have questions or feedback about these curriculum resources or would like to talk through a special needs strategy at your church, please contact your Orange Specialist by visiting http://findmyos.com.
For more on this, check out episode nine of the Orange Kids Podcast: