Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

First Advisor

Dr. Sean O'Shea

Second Advisor

Valentine Burr

Abstract

This curriculum provides training and resources to Jewish day schools, synagogues, summer camps, and other organizations seeking to better embrace all members of their community and foster full and meaningful integration and participation. Focused primarily on youth with developmental and learning disabilities, though with definite implications for other populations, this curriculum provides a first-step for a community seeking to become more inclusive. Beginning with developing a commitment to inclusion and a common mindset among the staff that will be charged with implementing the programming, the curriculum strives to ensure collaboration from every stakeholder and community member. The second section is focused on children, providing a developmentally appropriate scope and sequence in order to scaffold children’s understanding of difference and disability. By focusing on the overall culture and mindset of the community towards difference and disability, the curriculum stands in contrast to traditional approaches to disability awareness and sensitivity trainings, seeking to shift understandings of what it truly means to embrace and include people with a variety of developmental variations.

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