Diverse Abilities for GR K-3

Don’t Hug Doug

Author: Carrie Finison

Illustrator: Daniel Wiseman

Doug doesn’t like hugs. He thinks hugs are too squeezy, too squashy, too squooshy, too smooshy. He doesn’t like hello hugs or goodbye hugs, game-winning home run hugs or dropped ice cream cone hugs, and he definitely doesn’t like birthday hugs. He’d much rather give a high five–or a low five, a side five, a double five, or a spinny five. Yup, some people love hugs; other people don’t. So how can you tell if someone likes hugs or not? There’s only one way to find out: Ask! Because everybody gets to decide for themselves whether they want a hug or not.

Lesson Plan

Activity Booklet

I Can, Too!

Author: Karen Autio

Illustrator: Laura Watson

Piper and Kayla love to move. They ride bikes, glide on ice, swoosh down mountains and much more ― each in her own way. While Piper pedals her tricycle with her feet, Kayla uses her hands to move her trike forward. While Kayla coasts across the ice on a sled, Piper sails along on skates. Join Kayla and Piper as they play together, explore their world and make new friends.

The inspiration for I Can, Too! comes from the author’s daughter, who was born with spina bifida. On a visit to the mall after her child received her first wheelchair, a young boy pointed, asking his mother, “Why is that girl in a wheelbarrow?” Karen welcomed questions so the unknown could be named and understood and children could get to know her daughter.

Lesson Plan

Activity Booklet

What Happened to You?

Author: James Catchpole

Illustrator: Karen George

The first ever picture book addressing how a disabled child might want to be spoken to.

What happened to you? Was it a shark? A burglar? A lion? Did it fall off?

Every time Joe goes out the questions are the same . . . what happened to his leg? But is this even a question Joe has to answer?

A ground-breaking, funny story that helps children understand what it might feel like to be seen as different.

Lesson Plan

Activity Booklet

Diverse Abilities Resources

Character Role Playing Cards
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Anti Bullying Activities
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Teaching about acceptance (replace acceptance for tolerance)
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Mental Health/Belonging/”You are not alone”
A variation of this activity would be for students to anonymously write down the sentence, “if you really knew me…” and then finished it with something they are struggling with. Teacher collects all slips and reads aloud to debrief responses. Students are able to learn about and/or relate to some of the things other students are going through creating a sense of community within the classroom.
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