An Interview with Elena Chambers Part 2: Improving Accessibility in Performing Arts Schools
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
1M ago
Part 2 of a conversation with Elena Chambers, disability activist, on accessibility and support for disabilities in performing arts schools and … An Interview with Elena Chambers Part 2: Improving Accessibility in Performing Arts Schools ..read more
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“This Won’t Age Well”: 20 Years of Neurodivergent-Coded Women as Punchlines
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
5M ago
Always one to be late to the game, I watched the original Mean Girls movie for the first time in 2018. At the time, I was still ashamed of my learning disability, believed I was inferior, and constantly questioned my intelligence and competence. Early 2000s high school movies often have a weird way of reminding young women that they too can reach the ever-shifting moral pinnacle of adolescent existence by proving to the world that smart girls don’t have to tarnish their coveted capitalistic moral purity by being perceived as conventionally unattractive. In fact, you can and should top ALL the ..read more
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Should You Tell Me What to Do? (A Practical Guide)
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
8M ago
“You should probably write that down so you don’t forget it.” I was on the phone with the office of disability services at my university trying to arrange a meeting. My pen hovered above the paper, ready to write down the time the receptionist had told me. Upon hearing those words, I quickly dropped it. I didn’t know what to say, so I said nothing. “I’ll watch my email for a zoom link.” I told them, pretending I didn’t hear the (presumably) unintentionally condescending comment. There was silence on the other end. Finally, the receptionist said, “have a good day.” After hanging up the phone I ..read more
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Beyond “Accommodations”: Creating a More Informed World
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
11M ago
I was filling out paperwork for the disability office at my university today and found myself staring at one deceptively complicated question: “What accommodations do you need?” I allowed myself a moment to look back on my time in undergrad and re-visit the all-night study sessions, the professor who openly made fun of the concept of needing accommodations in front of the class, the classes structured so that a student’s entire grade hinged on two exams, the people who made critical comments about their classmates’ perceived academic success behind their backs, and of course, the professors wh ..read more
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No, “Smart” Is Not The New “Pretty”
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
1y ago
A (not-so)-Brief Defense of Just Letting Girls Exist When I was young, I was the kind of kid who tried a bit of everything. Gymnastics, ballet, soccer, tap dance, pottery, theatre, and choir were all activities I attempted between ages four and ten and somehow, I seemed to have endless energy at the time to (kind of) learn these various skills. When I played soccer in first grade, I remember asking the coaches after every game, “did we win?” I didn’t much care either way because I was having too much fun running around the field (and occasionally kicking the ball in the wrong direction) to eve ..read more
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“We’re Going to Transition to a New Location”
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
1y ago
It was the second day of professional development and my new-educator anxiety had finally began to calm down. I had a great principal, great co-workers, and and a school that truly valued inclusion. I was beginning to think that maybe I was prepared for this job after all. We were gathered in the cafeteria with the entirety of the district’s staff when I heard the words that no non-driving adult wants to hear: “we’re going to transition to a new location now.” Judging from the sound of everyone around me rustling around for their car keys, I knew that we weren’t  just talking about moving ..read more
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Decommodifying Intelligence: How the ACT Score Became the New Thigh Gap
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
2y ago
It’s only attainable for a small number of people born with specific traits, it’s often directly tied to privilege, and societal pressure to have one can give teenagers debilitating mental illnesses. Now introducing: The Good Standardized Test Score.  But what, you might ask, do unrealistic societal beauty standards (like thigh gaps) have to do with the academic ableism built into the very structures of our education systems? As someone with a learning disability who has also struggled with eating disorders, I know quite a bit about societal pressure to be thin as well as the extreme toll ..read more
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Embracing The “And” In Disability Advocacy
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
2y ago
When nerotypical/able-bodied people do the work of centering and supporting individuals with disabilities (which we love to see!), there are a few common approaches to this work that sometimes aren’t as effective as they could be. First, let’s discuss what disability advocacy on the part of non-disabled people looks like. This could mean: an organization or institution featuring a disabled member of their community by writing an article, making a video, or otherwise talking about that person publicly in order to farther their mission of promoting diversity or bringing awareness to the diverse ..read more
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When Getting Lost Gets Dangerous: The Scary Reality of Being a Directionally Challenged Women
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
2y ago
If you’ve known me for any length of time, you probably know that struggling with navigation and directions is one of the most difficult parts of my learning disability. While this used to be a huge source of embarrassment for me, I’ve learned to use my awkward getting-lost-moments as a chance to explain my situation to the people in my life. I make a lot of jokes about not knowing my way around, but the truth is, being directionally challenged is much more than a quirky personality trait. It’s embarrassing, discouraging, isolating, and sometimes it even becomes dangerous.    Just to ..read more
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Our Brains Are Not Your Entertainment: A Critical Look At Female Neurodivergent Representation in Mainstream Television
Dyscalculia Community Blog
by elenahcc
2y ago
There’s a fine line between representation and objectification when it comes to the portrayal of neurodivergent traits in women in the media. I was scrolling through social media the other day and saw a tweet that reminded me just how much women are objectified for doing absolutely anything- including existing with neurodivergent minds. The tweet (posted by a man) simply read: “there’s something so attractive about a girl who doesn’t know what’s going on ever.” Of course, my immediate response as someone who would frequently be seen as the “girl who doesn’t know what’s going on” due to my disa ..read more
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