The Walk That Made Me – A Review And Study Plan

Film Title: The Walk That Made Me Year of Release: 2021 Written by: Chris Packham for BBC Certificate: N/A Running time: 59 minutes Link to the film on iPlayer (until June 2022): https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000xqgp/chris-packham-the-walk-that-made-me (Available with audio description or British Sign Language interpretation) BBC iPlayer summary:  “Chris Packham explores his past as he walks a familiar path in the Hampshire countryside. … Continue reading The Walk That Made Me – A Review And Study Plan

Back To School: Resources For Families With Children With Additional Needs

A few months ago, as schools were fully opening after lockdown, I pulled together a list of resource websites that provided support and information for families of children with disabilities and additional needs whose children were returning to the classroom. As we start thinking about the next ‘back to school’ moment, later in August in … Continue reading Back To School: Resources For Families With Children With Additional Needs

Helping Our Autistic Children Recover From Meltdowns

Our Autistic son, James, had a meltdown recently, an experience that will be familiar to many families of Autistic children. Like any Autistic child or young person, when James has a meltdown there can be a wide range of triggers that could be causing it. He may be being overwhelmed by a range of sensory … Continue reading Helping Our Autistic Children Recover From Meltdowns

Coming Out Of Lockdown: The Child Mental Health Cost And What We Can Do About It

We’ve been warned about it, we’ve seen it coming, maybe we’ve experienced it in our own family situation, but now the evidence is all too clear and stark. We might be coming towards the end of lockdown restrictions, ‘Freedom Day’ as some seem to like to call it, but we are only just fully understanding … Continue reading Coming Out Of Lockdown: The Child Mental Health Cost And What We Can Do About It

Left Behind – Children With Additional Needs As We Emerge From The COVID-19 Pandemic

As part of its ongoing research partnership with Pears Foundation, the Disabled Children's Partnership (DCP) of which I'm a member, surveyed roughly 300 parents in June 2021 in our final survey as part of the series. I had the privilege of being one of those parents. The findings, released today, reveal that whilst the rest … Continue reading Left Behind – Children With Additional Needs As We Emerge From The COVID-19 Pandemic

Why Getting Birthday’s Right Matters!

June is the month where three generations of Arnold’s celebrate their birthdays; James, me and my Dad. Chronologically, and just by a few hours, the first is James’ birthday. This has been the second birthday he has had during the pandemic, the second birthday that we’ve not been able to celebrate with him as we … Continue reading Why Getting Birthday’s Right Matters!

Holiday! Celebrate! – A Song For Additional Needs Families In 2021

Who knew that when global pop icon Madonna’s third hit single, ‘Holiday’, hit the airwaves in 1983 that the words to this upbeat pop classic would become so iconic for the world some 38 years later. As we arrive at the second COVID-19 summer many families are looking for a much-needed holiday, but with so … Continue reading Holiday! Celebrate! – A Song For Additional Needs Families In 2021

Leaving Lockdown: Learning To Listen To Each Other, Our Children, And Ourselves

We are surrounded by noise, whether it is the noise of people around us, the constant noise of technology, the noise of kitchen appliances, the noise of cars and trucks, emergency vehicles, planes and trains. There is noise everywhere and perhaps that is one reason why we've become less good at listening… listening to each … Continue reading Leaving Lockdown: Learning To Listen To Each Other, Our Children, And Ourselves

Don’t “Go Compare!” – Milestones, Transitions And Rites Of Passage For Children With Additional Needs

Throughout the childhood and adolescence of any child there are many different kinds of milestones, transitions and rites of passage, many changes that come along, but for families of children with additional needs these can provide many opportunities for unhealthy comparison and a realisation of difference, which can sometimes be so difficult and painful.Milestones might … Continue reading Don’t “Go Compare!” – Milestones, Transitions And Rites Of Passage For Children With Additional Needs

COVID-19 Jabs And Young People With Additional Needs

James is in his late teens, is autistic, has learning difficulties, epilepsy and anxiety, and so he came in towards the bottom end of category ‘six’ in the Government’s COVID-19 vaccination first phase priority groups: Adults aged 16 to 65 years in an at-risk group.Last week it was James’ turn to have his first COVID-19 vaccination. … Continue reading COVID-19 Jabs And Young People With Additional Needs