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The importance of keeping special needs students active

For some children with special needs, staying active can be difficult. However, it’s important for children to learn how to take care of their body and mind.

Here are just a few of the ways students with disabilities should be staying active at school.

Physical exercise

It’s common for children with special needs to have mobility restrictions. Whether your child uses a wheelchair, is blind or has low muscle dexterity, they may not be able to participate in the same physical exercises as other children.

Yet, it is still within your child’s rights to a meaningful education to learn about and benefit from exercise. School officials should establish unique programs and activities that can help your child improve their physical education.

For example, a student that is blind may be able to use a treadmill or elliptical machine to run the same number of laps as other students. Children with mobility issues may be able to explore hydrotherapy or yoga with the help of an aid.


Staying active also means keeping up with a child’s participation in school. Teachers may need to establish alternative challenges for children whose disability prevents them from participating in activities.

For example, children with an intellectual disability may work on following directions while other students learn to solve math problems. It’s important that your child doesn’t have too much “free time” at school. Instead, they should be learning and practicing skills that will help them in the future.


It can be frustrating for all children to stay cooped up inside a classroom all day. However, most kids are able to get exposure to new environments during recess and on field trips.

Children with special needs should have an equal opportunity to gain exposure to new environments. This may require more attention from teachers and school officials to look for ways that a child with a disability can still explore. If you feel your child is not getting the attention he or she deserves, learn more about your child’s rights and what you can do to protect them.

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