How to teach your child self-advocacy

What can You as the Parent do to Teach Self Advocacy?

  • Figure out what your child is good at and what they need help with.
  • Make a list of people and programs that help support them.
  • Learn about laws or policies that support their needs.
  • Learn about their disability and how it affects them.
  • Role play with your child (maybe include a friend or teacher) to practice skills.
  • Set up real-life experiences as often as you can, during which your child can communicate their needs and wants.
  • Encourage your child to go to or lead their IEP and other meetings and to share their idea, dreams, and concerns.


  There are many ways for children to share information. Young people with significant disabilities can be good self-advocates. They can communicate verbally or in writing. They can use technology, like speech-to-text software. They can use Braille, sign language, pictures, photos, letterboards. They can use body language like head nods, smiles, or grimaces.

Table of Contents