[R-0233] S4. Instructional Planning

Citation: Understanding Our Differences: Newton, Mass. (2014). Understanding Our Differences: The Leader in Disability Awareness Education. Retrieved from http://www.understandingourdifferences.org/

Abstract: Understanding Our Differences is a model, interactive disability awareness curriculum that teaches children to “see the person and not the disability.” It uses a hands-on, participatory curriculum to foster respect, acceptance, and compassion for people of all abilities in elementary schools and communities at large. Since 1978, the program has been successfully disseminated to more than 200 schools nationwide.

The program consists of seven different units covering Blindness and Low Vision, Deafness and Hard of Hearing, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Physical Disabilities, Intellectual Disabilities, Learning Disabilities, and Chronic Medical Conditions such as Allergic Conditions, Asthma, Diabetes, and Epilepsy. It is designed to fit into a typical 3rd to 5th grade curriculum. The UOD program is usually taught by trained, volunteer instructors.

Understanding Our Differences is a nonprofit organization and a national leader in disability awareness education. [Homepage]

Integration: N/A

Content Focus: Curriculum; Disability; Understanding Our Differences; Curriculum Planning

Notes: The UOD approach is grounded in the belief that children are naturally curious about differences, and that accurate information can be the difference between acceptance and discrimination. It is usually taught by trained, volunteer instructors.

The staff, Board of Directors and teams of educators, health professionals, representatives of disability organizations, people with disabilities, and parents of children with disabilities continually review the program materials to ensure medical accuracy, state-of-the-art technology, and a clear anti-bullying message that promotes inclusion.