Learning differences, disabilities explored Oct. 27

If you’re a student with a learning difference or disability – or a parent or teacher trying to help – you know the meaning of the word “frustration.”

Several Eden Prairie organizations are here to help, starting with a free showing of the PBS documentary “Misunderstood Minds” followed by a panel discussion, all on Thursday evening, Oct. 27, at Eden Prairie High School.

The documentary will be shown in the EPHS Auditorium from 6 to 7:30 p.m., and the panel discussion will be held from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. It’s sponsored by the EPHS club called Unique Learners Rising Above, in cooperation with the Eden Prairie Disability Awareness Committee and the Eden Prairie Community Foundation.

The PBS documentary shines a spotlight on learning differences and disabilities by following the lives and daily struggles of five students with learning disabilities, and showing how success is possible. Produced and directed by renowned “Frontline” filmmaker Michael Kirk, this 90-minute piece shows the children’s problems in a new light, and serves as a platform for a nationwide dialogue on how best to manage young, vulnerable, and misunderstood minds.

“This is an important documentary,” Rachelle Johnson, club president and EPHS junior, said in a press release about the event. “As many as one in five families are coping with children who struggle to learn. I want all adults to know the signs of learning struggles and for kids to know they’re not alone.”

Julie Sowatzka, the club’s advisor and EPHS case manager, said the documentary “helps to illuminate ways to help struggling students, their parents, and teachers better identify and manage learning problems.”

The event is free and open to the public – and valuable, said club members, for parents, grandparents, teachers, students, employers, and everyday people.

If this is a topic that hits close to home for you, there’s a good bet you’ll walk away with a better understanding of learning processes, insights into difficulties, and strategies for responding.

That’s a “win” for you, for Eden Prairie, and for society as a whole.

Categories: Foundation News

Mark Weber About the Author Mark Weber has been the executive director of the Eden Prairie Community Foundation since October 2013. In this role, he enjoys meeting with Eden Prairie residents, and being an active member of the community. If you’d like to connect with Mark, call him at (952) 949-8499 or email him. You can also read Mark’s full biography.

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