|Creative Training - A User's Guide (IIRR, 1998, 226 pages)|
|Physical activities as educational tools|
Disability awareness training
One leg missing
Part of one arm missing
a. During the early phase of a professional training course in Occupational Therapy (in Liverpool, United Kingdom), simple equipment was used to simulate different disabilities (e.g., blindfolds for blindness, clouded goggles for cataracts, ear muffs for hearing impairment, elastic strapping to simulate missing limbs (see illustrations), thick gloves to simulate a loss of feeling in the hands). Wearing this equipment, the students attempted to carry out a series of everyday tasks (cooking, dressing, shopping, communicating, etc.). The outcome was increased understanding of the difficulties and frustrations faced by some people who have physical disabilities, resulting in a more empathetic approach to those people, increased efforts to ask their opinions about their problems, and increased motivation to help them find solutions to their problems.
Note: Later in the course, this understanding of the difficulties resulted in feelings of deep respect for individual people with disabilities who had overcome their difficulties to lead active and purposeful lives.
b. A new worker at an organization working with and managed by
people with disabilities in London (United Kingdom), was given an induction
which involved shopping while using a wheelchair. He found he could cope with
most of the practical difficulties (e.g., access to the shops) but was accutely
aware of people staring, pitying him and labeling him as
Such short term experiences and equipment that only partially
simulates a particular disability can lead to a denial of the importance of the
problems, if the experience is not discussed carefully with the participants
afterwards. For example: ear muffs for deafness do not completely block the
sense of hearing and do not simulate the difficulty with learning spoken and
written language which is experienced by those Deaf from
Games which require participants to use or divulge their newly acquired knowledge can be a way of evaluating what they have learned from a training course.
Competitive games may put pressure on participants to hurry, and
this can result in more errors and therefore lower apparent achievements than
the participants are capable of. This will affect the evaluation and may reduce
Dietary relay (Example used in healthworker training by ALAYKA)
1. Following a basic training on nutrition, which explained the three main groups of foods, a relay race was used to evaluate the training.
2. The group was divided into three teams.
3. Each team was given an umbrella and a face down pile of cards with the names of various food items.
4. On the wall in front of each team (and about 5 m. away) was a sheet of manila paper divided into three columns and marked "go", "grow" and "glow".
5. Each person in turn put up the umbrella, picked up a card, ran to the wall and placed it in what they felt was the appropriate column.
6. They then ran back and gave the umbrella to another person in their team, who did the same with the next card.
7. The first team to place all their cards received three points,
the second team two points, and the last team one point. Then, each team
received one point for every "correctly placed" food
"go foods" - carbohydrates or energy givers
"grow foods" - proteins or body builders
"glow foods" - vitamins and minerals or vitality
In this game, many items (e.g., mung beans, nuts, bananas) can be
correctly placed in two or all of the columns, and the resulting discussion
about this was possibly more valuable than the game itself in reinforcing the
participants' practical knowledge of