How can I encourage you to learn? Understanding the needs of children with MDVI

The Perkins India and Jayati Bharatam IDI Team in Lucknow learns how to identify the needs of children with MDVI through functional assessment.

Demonstrating functional assessment for children with MDVI

In the rural areas of Sitapur and Lucknow district, families are often on their own to find sources of support and suitable services for their children with multiple disabilities and vision impairment (MDVI). Luckily, the Project IDI Team works to fill this void. 

After months of tireless work to screen children in communities, they’ve identified hundreds of children with MDVI who are in need of educational supports and services. The team must now learn the strengths and needs of each child so they can plan the best intervention to meet their needs.This can be done through a process called functional assessment. 

Anuradha Mungi, Educational Specialist, and Sampada Shevde, Country Head for Perkins India, led a training for the IDI Team on how to conduct functional assessments using tools like Student Profile Forms. 

Simulation activities brought the practical training to life and enthused participants as they came to understand the challenges children with MDVI face and adaptations that would encourage them to learn. 

Participants involved in a simulation activity
Demonstrating functional assessment for children with MDVI

Four children with MDVI and their families were invited to the training. Ms Sampada and Ms Anuradha demonstrated firsthand the process of functional assessment. They highlighted important practices for assessment such as proper positioning of the child, what materials to use, and how to involve family members.The IDI Team was given the chance to interact with all the children and practice the process of functional assessment under the guidance of the Perkins India experts.

Sophia, a CBR worker on the Project IDI Team shared, “Now I have a much better understanding of why some children were uncomfortable or inconsistent in their responses. I will now go back and assess their needs and accordingly make adaptations, so that they can learn in a much better way.”

In addition to the formal training, the IDI team was able to see the process of functional assessment firsthand as they visited children with MDVI in the community. Ms Anuradha and Ms Sampada demonstrated assessment strategies during these home visits that helped to reinforce the crucial components of functional assessment on a variety of children and under varying circumstances.

Ms. Renu Agnihotri, Chief Functionary at Jayati Bharatam, said “We have learned so many new skills and gained new information in the area of assessment, positioning and understanding the challenges of different children; all through this training which was very practical, easy to understand, very interesting and participative.” 

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