Including Samuel

Respond to the video Including Samuel by posting a comment on this page. Come prepared to discuss it next time.

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21 Responses to “Including Samuel”

  1. KristinA says:

    Near the beginning of the video, a man with cerebral palsy that was speaking in an auditorium or something(I can’t remember his name) said something that seemed to contradict the whole idea of the video and it bothered me the rest of the time we were watching it. He said that if someone were have a cure for his disablity he would refuse it, which is all well and good. Then, he continues to say that this is because he IS the disability and if it was gone he would have to start all over in making a new personality. Is it just me or was the point of the video that the person is not the disabilty? You should look beyond the disability to find the person and personality within.

  2. LoganG says:

    Addressing Kristin’s comment “he IS the disability”:

    I found his part of the video interesting as well, but for perhaps different reasons. I thought that he was saying that cerebral palsy is simply a part of his life, a struggle through which he has found his identity. Obviously I don’t think he would have chosen to begin life with Cerebral Palsy, but it was the cards he was dealt, so to speak.

    What I perceived to be the central point of that clip, was that he had mentally over come the obstacle Cerebral Palsy, to the point in which he enjoys his life so much he would not “take the cure” if it were presented to him.

  3. dallara says:

    I think that part of the real problem for disabled people (and this is implied and mentioned in the video several times) is that society is holding them back and/or is not providing them with enough opportunities to be part of society. In fact, society can sometimes be more disabling to a disabled individual than his/her actual disability. I think that if our society was much more determined to include people with disabilities, it would probably find a way to do so. This is because when people really want something, they will do whatever it takes to get it. As a result, I think that our society needs to have a much stronger desire to help people with disabilities than it does now.

  4. cpowers9 says:

    I thought it was interesting that the movie made a point to show how beneficial integration was for students like Samuel and Kevin but showed at the same time how it was detrimental for the woman with schizophrenia. It reveals how the problem with the school system in regards to disabled people isn’t completely black and white; that mandating integration or always keeping disabled students isn’t right for everyone. Unfortunately not all students have the choice to do what’s best for them in places that only use one system.

  5. Erin says:

    “Including Samuel” gave me a whole new perspective on inclusive societies. Before watching the video, I was really unsure about whether or not students with disabilities should be integrated into a typical classroom setting. Part of me strongly felt that all students should learn together because not only does it provide for an equal education, but it creates an environment where students learn to accept their peers for who they are. However, I am also aware that trying to teach a class with both “typical” students and students with disabilities can cause students to either fall behind or not achieve their potential. After watching this video, I think that there is really a good middle ground that can be met. I think that students should be put in a classroom that will enable them to meet their full potential, no matter what that may be. This means that if a student with a disability is capable of succeeding on the same level as students without disabilities, then he or she should be taught in a typical classroom setting. However, if a student does not have the ability to learn at the same level and speed as a typical student, then they should be taught in a different setting. I don’t like to think about students with disabilities as being shut off from their peers, but sometimes it seems like that is just the best solution for the student. There are still plenty of other ways to ensure that students with disabilities still have the opportunity to interact with the other students.

  6. hunterC says:

    I’m glad that “Including Samuel” was sure to address both sides of the inclusion coin. Some of the previous videos have made it seem that inclusion should be a general statement of truth and that any other plan was inadequate. I think that inclusion can be beneficial but I also think it has the potential to be detrimental as shown in this video. There also seems to be a very fine line between giving a person with a disability a challenge that doesn’t insult their abilities while ensuring the task is still possible. The cold, hard truth of the matter is that people with disabilities cannot perform certain tasks like a “normal” person could. However, it would still be unwise to take for granted what the disabled community has to offer society. I think a lot of times “normal” people underestimate the abilities of a person with a disability, not because they intend to, but rather because is is much safer to underestimate someone than to present him with a level of challenge he could never rise to. In this respect, I think determining reasonable goals for a person with a disability should be left to either the person or his/her primary caretakers.

  7. AlexandraA says:

    Erin and Hunter, I completely agree with you. I think everyone should get what they need to maximize their potential in life- whether its including someone who has a disability in a class they can keep up with, or putting them in a seperate school where they will get the help they need, or extending this to providing kids with above-average intelligence with harder assignments so that they are also pushed to do their best.
    I was actually watching a “What Would You Do” rerun last week, and saw this clip, which I thought went perfectly with our topic:

    look under Week: August 27, under “Women Berates Clerk with Down Syndrome.”

    I thought the peoples reactions are the most interesting part. Based on this experiment, I feel like more people actually do sympathize and agree with the cause for people with disabilities, but they are too scared/ too uninterested to stand up for them. My favorite line is the schoolteacher Karen’s (after about 6:30 minutes) where she says that: “everybody deserves an education, everybody deserves a job, and everybody deserves a chance in this life.”

  8. allenak says:

    I thought it was interesting about how it was emphasized that integration was so important at a young age. It seemed that it was easy to integrate Samuel becaue he was young, small, and cute. At his age, the developmental differences between him and his peers are not so large. However, the importance of integration does not fade as children get older. It seems like it was much harder to integrate the high school girl into the classroom because of her behavioral problems. However, it did seem like she was getting so much out of her high school experience and continued to defy the odds placed against her at birth.
    It doesn’t seem like an easy task to integrate all children – like the high school girl who would interrupt her class by screaming. I think the video that Alexandra posted shows that people are much more willing to do what is easy than what is right. While it might be easier to keep people with disabilities in separate classes, I think everyone should keep in mind the benefits of integrating people like Samuel. After all, he is just another first grade boy who loves playing with his friends in the classroom and on the ball field.

  9. klomax says:

    I agree with what Erin said. At the high school I am from, there was a girl, Kori, who reminded me of the teenage girl in the video (I cannot remember her name). Kori was always allowed to be a part of the “typical” classroom setting because it challenged her, but she could keep up. At the end of the year, we had an awards ceremony where a person from each class was recognized for having the highest overall average for the course. Kori received the award for every class she was in. Granted, she was not in advanced placement classes or even honors classes, but she was in classes more difficult than those that she would have been in if she was secluded from the other students. She took on the challenge of harder classes and succeeded. I believe inclusion is a good thing for students like Kori; however, I do not think all students with disabilities can take on the challenge. For instance, in Samuel’s situation, he can be included now, at a young age, but what happens when he gets older? It becomes harder to include students who need extra help with the other students. This makes it very hard to find a balance. In the video someone stated that as long as there are extra rooms for students with disabilities, inclusion will never fully happen. I found this interesting and true. However, I think seclusion is better for students who need more one on one help. It depends on the student.

  10. Philip Brooks says:

    At the public schools I went to in Minnesota, it was very common to see the children with disabilities in the classroom working along with us, but like the video it wasn’t always without issue. Just as the high school girl in the clip screamed out in the middle class, I can remember on several occasions the same things happening. A class can only deal with these interruptions for so long before it becomes detrimental to the steady advancement of the rest of the class. And as has been stated before, it is fairly easily to integrate the kids at a young age with their respective classes, I personally believe that it has to be realized that when these kids reach their teenage/older years that it may ultimately be necessary that they are not a part of the general population for a portion/majority of the day. While this takes away from them feeling “as part of the group”, it will allow both groups of students to reach each own’s potential.

  11. MattK says:

    To me the apparent question (that others have hit on) does seem to be “Do the positives of Full Inclusion outweigh the negatives?” Namely, is it worth sacrificing the best possible education for the top students to increase the opportunities of those who need extra attention and special help?
    This is a hard question to answer, but upon my reading of Dan Habib’s reasons to have a pro-inclusion society I cannot come up with any arguments that seem to counter his. How can we actually know who the top students are? I would be very hesitant to say that all the people with the greatest impact on history all made 5s on AP exams. There is a large amount of people considered disabled who have made huge impacts on society (Stephen Hawking, Helen Keller). It is more about the individual and what they are willing to do and overcome and not just about aptitude for standard schooling. After reading Dan Habib’s reasoning I believe everyone deserves opportunities to reach their full potential.

  12. BrookeD says:

    This movie warmed my heart, but broke it at the same time. It really made me think about what I would do or feel if I had a child with a disability. I know Samuel’s parents have such a hard time trying to do everything they can to make sure that Samuel gets the most out of life. They obviously love him no less, but it definitely would be a day-to-day struggle to have a child with a disability. I loved the relationship between Samuel and his brother-they were so sweet with each other! As far as integration goes, this movie gave me a more broad perspective on the subject. Coming from a school that does not integrate disabled children, I’ve always thought that integration would put a strain on the learning environment in the classroom. I thought that there would be no way that a teacher could reach the top student in the class while at the same time reaching a student with a disability. However, after watching Samuel in the classroom, I feel like integrating students is a good thing for many different reasons. The movie said that the GPA in integrated classrooms was higher overall than the GPA in un-integrated classrooms. I also think that Samuel was getting more of an opportunity to interact with typical students in a classroom environment than he would have had in an integrated classroom. Integration also helps typical kids be more open and accepting of students with disabilities. I really liked this video!

  13. KatieC says:

    When I first read the link posted on this assignment, , I didn’t even need to finish the page before I knew exactly what I wanted to respond to-the quote given, ‘”Why do we even bother paying for education for these kids?,” wrote a commenter named Lilly.’ My answer to Lilly is simple; we bother paying, not only because we are not sociopaths, but also because an available and accessible education is guaranteed to “these kids” by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Not to mention the fact that our nation was founded upon principles such that we are ALL created equal, and therefore we should all be entitled to the same quality public education as the Supreme Court ruled, separate is inherently unequal.
    I finish with this excerpt from Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “1. Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages… Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.”
    If the inclusion of all types of students in an equal education doesn’t promote “the full development of the human personality”, then I don’t know what does.

  14. TylerD says:

    Another aspect nobody has discussed yet is Samuel’s brother Isaiah who although had no disability of his own, was greatly affected by his brother’s condition. I thought it was really sad to see Isaiah talk about watching his brother getting sick and being forced to stay in the hospital for weeks on end. Also, Isaiah discussed that he obviously cannot interact with his brother in the typical fashion which at first was discouraging. However, it was great to see that Isaiah has adapted and found other ways to play with his brother and develop the relationship between them.
    Its very important to remind those with other typical children that it is very easy to ignore them and focus on the child with the disability. The Habib family talked about the times when they realized Isaiah was in a way forgotten because Samuel’s health was such a focus in their lives. However, I loved seeing Isaiah talk about how much he loved his brother and it really became apparent that Isaiah was completely accepting of his brother, despite his less than typical condition.

  15. WilliamL says:

    The speaker who says that even if there is a cure, He wouldn’t take it because he IS disability also bothers me. I can understand that he accepts his identity as being disable; however, not accepting a cure just sounds too extreme to me. Because I am not in his position, I don’t know why he wouldn’t receive the cure. The statement just seems slightly hypocritical to me. Could he be saying that because he is forced to when there is in fact no cure? If people with disabilities wouldn’t receive treatment, what’s the point of spending money and time on researching?
    Most of the debate for inclusion circles around how society spends more effort on the “typical” students who are expected to contribute more to the society; however, going to school is not just teaching and learning. More aspects are included in the environment, for example, social life. Coming from a class where students with mental retardation are included, I suspect the success in all inclusive environment. They are picked on and neglected. In this case, I believe a separate program designed for students with disability would be more beneficial for both sides.

  16. jackie ivery says:

    I think this video proved that “full inclusion” is a great thing! However, I do understand why some people would have hesitations about full inclusion. They would probably be worried about the typical kids picking on the disabled children. I believe this problem could be consolidated by including these disabled students from the very beginning of schooling. If the other children grow up with disabled children in their class, then I believe that they will be less likely to pick on disabled people once they have grown up. Not including the disabled kids in regular activities and lessons is not going to benefit anyone! Samuel’s classmates absolutely loved him. Those children are being exposed to children that may not be exactly like them at an early age. So when the “typical” children grow up, they are way more familiar and will be able to easily accept the many differences between people.

  17. AubronW says:

    I find the statement by the man with cerebral palsy fairly easy to understand, as he has an attitude similar to a lot of capable disabled individuals. To say that such a thing as a “cure” exists implies that there is something wrong with them, that far from atypical, they are just wrong or broken. The Autism community in particular has been known to be at odds with National Autism organizations because of a divide between those that see Autism as a disease and want to look for a way to cure or eradicate it, and those that see it as a part of one’s identity, and want to push for programs that promote understanding and management of Autism.

  18. EthanO says:

    After watching this film, I feel that inclusion should not be something that is mandatory, but instead something that is readily available. While inclusion may benefit some students with disabilities ie. Samuel, it may not be as helpful for others ie. the girl who had schizophrenia. Dan Habib’s quote – “People are not limited by their disability, they are limited by a lack of opportunity.” – illustrates my point. The opportunity to learn in a ‘typical’ public school environment should certainly be an option for a child with disabilities, but it should by no means be required. If a particular child is more inclined to learn at his or her own pace in a separate learning environment, then so be it.

  19. StephenH says:

    I always saw kids with disabilities at the schools I went to growing up. They were always in special classrooms with special instructors and were kept secluded from others. At the time, I thought this was normal. I thought that it was for the best. But that’s because I didn’t know any better. After watching “Including Samuel” and some of the other films we’ve been watching in class, I realized that this was not the case at all. People need to be more aware of the situations involving people with disabilities. They need to be included in daily activities with normal students and in other social situations they need to be included as well. It’s not their fault that they’re disabled, they just want to be normal. Kids like Samuel want nothing more than to fit it, and we need to make sure that they do.

  20. BethanyB says:

    After watching the video, I tend to agree with the idea that inclusion should be an option, but not mandatory. For some people, obviously, inclusion would be prefered and beneficial. On the other hand, for some (such as the girl with schizophrenia), separate classes are prefered and the best environment. Forced inclusion could be just as detrimental to some childrens’ education as forced segregation.

  21. AbelT says:

    The video shows a case where they attempt to include samuel in there school and activities. This was a successful inclusion which i would say was justified because Samuel had some level of capability. I wonder if Inclusion would be so successful with people who have more extreme forms of disability. Also they showed Samuel at a young age where the kids are more accepting. If used in perhaps High School i dont think inclusion would be as successful.