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The purpose of this paper is to set an example of how people with severe learning difficulties could be more integrated into our society.
The installation consists of puzzles in the form of a specially designed table with an integrated touch screen. As the visual templates for the puzzles serve pictures painted by a person with severe learning difficulties. The pieces of the puzzles are manipulated directly by the player on the touch screen presenting an intuitive and easily learned user interface.
The framework for the work was a creation of an interactive art installation in the form of a game where users assemble puzzles on a touch monitor, housed in a specially designed table. Paintings by a person with severe learning difficulty served as visual templates for the puzzles. The pieces of the puzzles can be manipulated directly by the user on a touch screen presenting an intuitive and easily learned user interface, which stimulates the learning of fine motor skills and encourages practice, thus making it suitable for persons with severe learning difficulties in an art therapy setting.
As the work has the format of an interactive art installation, this enables it to gain publicity through exhibitions in art galleries.
The installation demonstrates how people with severe learning difficulties can be integrated into the broader society. At the same time, these people are encouraged to use modern computer information technology, which is becoming a necessity also for this group of users. Ethical issues regarding how this group of people can get involved in such work are also discussed.
Combining the habituation of people with severe learning difficulties with computer technology in the form of a game, and framing the whole process as a fine art undertaking, to win the public recognition, is a novelty in addressing the needs of these people.
There has been a policy for including pupils with severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties in mainstream schools in England since the 1980s. However, effective…
There has been a policy for including pupils with severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties in mainstream schools in England since the 1980s. However, effective inclusive education has proved to be very difficult to achieve in practice. Currently, there is a mixed economy of special and mainstream schools offering inclusive education, and we argue that the place of education is less important than the quality of that education. Ideally, pupils with S/PMLD would be educated in their own local communities, alongside their non-disabled peers, but this situation is not yet established in English schools.
There are many definitions of profound and multiple learning disabilities. Most definitions include having a high degree of learning disability in conjunction with at…
There are many definitions of profound and multiple learning disabilities. Most definitions include having a high degree of learning disability in conjunction with at least one other severe impairment, such as visual, auditory or physical impairments (Male, 1996; Ware, 1996; Lacey, 1998). Bunning (1997) adds that people with such disabilities are very reliant on others for support, including support in taking part in communicative events. Establishing reliable and consistent methods of communication may be exceptionally difficult (Florian et al, 2000). However, it is important to consider the individuality and extreme diversity of this population (Detheridge, 1997; Hogg, 1998), which includes variability in communication strengths and needs (Granlund & Olsson, 1999; McLean et al, 1996). Communication is often given little attention when services are planning ways of supporting individuals to participate, develop independence and make choices (McGill et al, 2000). While the individual's communication strengths and needs should remain central within any discussion, the significant others and the environment will also have an important influence. This article explores some of the communication issues experienced by people with profound and multiple learning disabilities and highlights the importance of the communication partnership within interventions.
This article explores the law relating to the sexual abuse of people with learning difficulties and proposes a number of key changes that need to take place in order to…
This article explores the law relating to the sexual abuse of people with learning difficulties and proposes a number of key changes that need to take place in order to offer people with learning difficulties greater protection from abuse.
Attempts to include students with severe disabilities in mainstream classes are comparatively recent in the history of special education. A major motive for inclusion is…
Attempts to include students with severe disabilities in mainstream classes are comparatively recent in the history of special education. A major motive for inclusion is recognition of the right of all individuals to community membership. However, views differ on the extent to which the goals of inclusive education should emphasise the acquisition of the skills needed to function as contributing members of the community. Inclusion of students with severe disabilities involves changes in teacher roles and responsibilities and flexible approaches to class organisation. The move from an emphasis on functional curriculum to participation in core curriculum with non‐disabled students requires creative adaptations of both curriculum and instructional strategies, including strategies that foster class membership. Challenging behaviour is a potential barrier to successful inclusion, and new approaches that enable both class and specialist teachers to minimise its occurrence need to be developed. Although barriers still exist to inclusion of students with severe disabilities, there is evidence that inclusion can work successfully.
Explores the sex education needs of school students with severe learning difficulties with reference to curriculum content, teaching, resources and work with parents…
Explores the sex education needs of school students with severe learning difficulties with reference to curriculum content, teaching, resources and work with parents. Gives examples of a developmental approach to the curriculum.
If people with learning disabilities are to be effective social agents, the capacity to communicate with others through speech, sign or symbol manipulation is of central…
If people with learning disabilities are to be effective social agents, the capacity to communicate with others through speech, sign or symbol manipulation is of central importance. Unfortunately, severe and profound learning disabilities are frequently associated with very poor communicative skills and remediation is therefore essential. Theories of normal language development may be of value in suggesting remedial strategies but, of these, structural approaches that emphasise language organisation are less helpful than functional accounts of language use. The latter have led to many successful intervention programmes based in the domestic and social environments of learners. Research is continuing to produce rapid progress in communication intervention but the application of scientific findings is critically dependent on high levels of understanding by, and co‐operation between, professionals in such disciplines as nursing, clinical psychology, speech therapy, teaching and management.
This paper focuses on recent research and a series of field studies looking at the issue of learning difficulties among the Black and minority ethnic population. The research considers the hypothesis that Black and minority ethnic people experience the same levels of learning difficulty as the rest of the population. Some studies suggest that general prevalence may actually be higher, and that multiple incidence may be more frequent among certain minority ethnic communities. The literature indicates that Black and minority ethnic communities are much less aware of what services are available, take‐up is lower still, and there is a common view that services are unwelcoming or inappropriate.
What counts as the heart of access to educational opportunities for children with learning disabilities depends on the context in which the issue is viewed. Globally…
What counts as the heart of access to educational opportunities for children with learning disabilities depends on the context in which the issue is viewed. Globally, there can be little doubt that addressing poverty and international debt would make most difference. On a more local basis, while poverty remains the single most important factor, physical factors, location, attitudes, curriculum and the nature of the individual's disabilities are also important in facilitating or impeding access. These factors do not operate singly, but in complex interaction with each other. An examination of the literature shows a tendency for different aspects of access to be in the limelight at different times, but a great deal of progress has been made towards understanding how access can be facilitated. This paper concludes that the greatest danger lies in oversimplifying the issues and concentrating on some problems to the neglect of others. Further progress can best be achieved through taking seriously the nature and complexity of the barriers to access, especially for children with the most severe disabilities.
Currently, students with learning disabilities make up the largest group of students receiving special education services across the country. To understand the themes and…
Currently, students with learning disabilities make up the largest group of students receiving special education services across the country. To understand the themes and dimensions of learning disabilities, it is important to explore the historical progression of learning disabilities over time, including characteristics and outcomes of these students. This chapter will provide readers with in-depth information on the characteristics, national representation, demographics, and educational and long-term outcomes of students with learning disabilities.