What are Some Tips for Teaching Students with Physical Disabilities?

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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 08 September 2019
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Teaching students with physical disabilities may require modifications to regular classroom activities, but these students are generally equally as intelligent as other kids. They may require help with writing, teachers who know sign language, books written in Braille, or other specialized methods where available. The exact things which are required will depend on the student and the disabilities.

Sometimes special education teachers may be needed in the process of teaching students with physical disabilities, or they may require a helper to attend regular classes with them. This may be true of children who are wheelchair-bound, who lack the muscle tone needed for writing, and for those who need help walking from class to class. They may also require an altered physical education course, since they may not be able to participate in regular activities.

Additional issues may arise when teaching students who have physical disabilities if they are blind, deaf, or have additional conditions. Students who are blind cannot take advantage of visual aids and they will need to be taught to read using Braille, which is a method of writing which uses raised dots that students can feel with heir fingertips. Deaf students may need to be spoken with using sign language. Those with additional health problems may require different school scheduling to allot time for doctor’s visits and medication doses.


One of the most important things to remember when teaching students with physical disabilities is to include them in normal activities as much as possible. This is especially important for young children who want to feel included and engaged in a social life with other students. Although certain learning alterations may be needed, most kids can still be included in many normal classroom activities.

It is also important to make sure the school, classroom, and materials are accessible to disabled students as much as possible. This will make them feel more included and prevent problems and injuries while they are moving from class to class. Teachers should also be given instructions for dealing with the possibility of injury or medical emergencies with those who are disabled. For instance, special care may be needed for students who are prone to falls and broken bones. This is especially true for students who have additional health issues.

Parents and teachers should work together to make sure each student receives the proper care needed to ensure a good education. Teaching students with physical disabilities can cause challenges, but it is possible to allow most students to enjoy a normal school experience. Sometimes, students may need to attend a school specifically designed for the disabled. This ensures a proper education while allowing them to learn under the care of teachers who are trained to accommodate their unique needs.

Adult students with disabilities also require specialized attention, although they can often advocate for themselves better than children can. If you are teaching an adult with disabilities, some of the same principles apply, but you can also ask the student which things help him learn best. By this time, he may have learned which methods work and what special needs he has in learning more effectively. If an adult student also has mental challenges or a learning disability, many of the same things which work for children will work for him as well.


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Compliments to the publisher. I have found this information useful in my diploma course in basic education.

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