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In the research project by Peggy Hutchinson it was, not  surprisingly, found that differently abled people have the same desire  for social interactions as the people around them; such as “intimacy,  affection, and companionship. Others, however, were more unique or  important to people with handicaps because of their vulnerability, such  as having less reliance on services and family, advocacy, and greater  chance of having a normal life” (Hutchison, 1990).

I think the ways that differently abled people are able to enjoy deep  and meaningful friendships are actually quite similar to those outside  the community. Being a high school teacher, I see friendships blossom  for both sides of this discussion in a lot of similar ways and it starts  with putting themselves out there, being social, meeting people but as  Sam, Adam, and Gemma discussed, there are times that just the act of  getting out there and being social can be short circuited by classmates  whom lack basic social skills and find a way to further isolate them,  not only from the bullies but from the other classmates too. In my  opinion, this is almost the worst kind of bullying because it involves a  child whom already had a sense of not belonging, not fitting in, and  being “different” in an atmosphere that doesn’t embrace diversity.  (Ward, 2010)

When you have a differently abled friend, the special considerations  that enable or prevent social interaction are different for each person,  for the friends of a wheelchair bound friend, you have to remember that  not everywhere has ramps or the accessibility features necessary for  them to be able to socialize, in the classroom there are barriers with  the layout and the mindset that the desk beside the differently abled  student was to be left for the EA, even if the EA was not with the  student, this caused the other students to potentially exclude that  student because there is a perceived “bubble” around them that you would  not be able to occupy. Some classroom layouts were designed many years  ago and do not allow the student in a wheelchair to move freely about  the classroom. (Ward, 2010) In the film A boy and his dog, Orin is able  to overcome some of the isolation from kids and adults with his service  animal because it gave them something to break the ice and get to know  more about Orin and break down some of the social barriers. I feel like  this would be something that could help more differently abled students.  (McIver, 2014)

Works Cited

McIver, J. (Director). (2014). A boy and his dog [Motion P

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