Celebrating Autism Awareness 2013

Following the success of Autism Awareness Week last two years, Special Education Department in my school held several events to commemorate "World Autism Awareness Day" last April.
There were Film Screening, Art & Self Portrait Exhibition, Autism Booklet, and Special Education Stories Book. The Film Screening and The Exhibition had been conducted from 3-9 April. While the Special Education Stories book is still in the process of making.

The aim of this activities was not only to raise awareness among teachers and students regarding the existence of the students or friends with special needs who have many different specific abilities and challenges (Pratesianingrum, 2013), but also to have individual with special needs to be involved and to participate in promoting themselves to the community, by displaying their artworks and stories as well as self portraits. Moreover, through this activity, we are opening ourselves to anyone so they would have a better understanding about individuals with special needs (NZ Anastasia, 2013).

The Film Screening and The Exhibition were a total success. Grade 3-5 enjoyed watching short documentary movie that contained useful information about autism and was taken from Youtube. The primary students surely gained insight watching a short documentary movie about autism. They wrote reflection or experience they had with special needs students in colorful hand-cut paper.

The Exhibition was quite remarkable. Mainstream students (primary, middle and high school) were occupied to see special needs student's artworks and self-photos in the main lobby. The Exhibition displayed special needs students’ art works and stories as well as students’ self portrait. The theme for art work and stories was based on special needs students’ interest.

One thing that is still being made is Special Education Stories Book. The book consists of stories written by all Special Education Teacher. We are working hard on it so parents, teacher, or anyone will get something to learn after reading it. I'll keep you updated with the book's process of making. ;)

Overall, I was so happy to be able to work with a great team from my Special Education Department. Not to mention that I learned many lessons about maintaining interpersonal relationship, running a meeting, and being okay and opened to any feed-backs, comments, or suggestions.


Photo courtesy: Ibu Hana


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