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Diabetes in children has recently become more than just a need but a problem of the young generations. In general, diabetes is very popular nowadays in terms of multiple discussions and research. Children are a vital group of population, which represents not only the social group but growing health care trends in teenagers and adults. In United States, over 170,000 people under the age 20 have diabetes which is diagnosed. However, almost half of diabetes cases are not diagnosed in general, which proves that the real numbers are significantly higher (Children with Diabetes, 2005).
For this reason, as Principal of Instructional Design, I am to solve a problem which has been transformed from a need for more knowledgeable approach to diabetes and its potential causes. It is advised that children can easily absorb information regarding their health during the early school years. For this reason, the purpose of the planned instruction is the education of children about diabetes, its causes and threats to the health of people. Getting to know all the products which can be harmful for children at this stage is very important. It is also believed that the instructional intervention would become best solution beside the diabetes treatment.
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World Health Organization (2011) reports that within the Unites States, the cases of diabetes are not spread equally. Some states tend to have more diabetes in children cases than the others. According to the information provided by World Health Organization (2011), over third of the cases of children diabetes are spread between New Mexico and Texas. Compared to California, New Mexico has over 10% higher cases of diabetes in children than California.
In this respect, it is necessary to review the numbers. According to the information provided by the World Health Organization (2011), there are over 350 million people worldwide with diabetes. However, out of these people, the number of children with diabetes is less than a half. Therefore, diabetes in children is not a critical issue, but the issue which may become critical in the next few decades. For this reason, it is necessary to state that the problem of diabetes needs instruction for children. However, in this case the conditions under which the instruction is performed become a critical aspect of instructional design. Due to the fact that the instruction is usually a time-consuming process, the organization of the process is necessary. Classroom setting is suitable in cases when children are taught about school issues, but this may not be the best setting for instruction about diabetes. The natural environment in which most children play and rest is the best setting, in our opinion, as it allows targeting the children when they are relaxed and prepared for information. Additionally, due to the fact that the majority of children with diabetes have diabetes Type 2, the most likely causes for diabetes are obesity, the absence of physical activity and genetic predisposition (World Health Organization, 2011). Moreover, out of all diabetes cases which have been diagnosed, Children with Diabetes (2005) reports that Type 1 diabetes which is caused by insulin production problems is only 5% to 10 % of all diabetes cases, meaning that Type 2 diabetes which is caused by the malnutrition and the lack of physical activity, accounts for the rest of the cases. For this reason, the setting of nature and outdoor physical activity is the most suitable for instruction about diabetes in children.
The major reasons for instruction are the following: general knowledge which is often lacking due to poor family and school medical education, growing numbers of sugar-based products consumed by children, and obesity as lack of physical activity. Therefore, after evaluating the most important drivers of the instruction process, the needs can be defined as well.
The needs which can be identified in this case are the following: family impact, health safety and growth, feeling of absenteeism due to disease which is based comparison to other children without diabetes, and desire to be healthy in the future. These needs are necessary for the people conducting the instruction as they can apply the need analysis as the background for presenting the most valuable arguments in the area of diabetes and speak about those problems which are most likely to be a reflection of the needs of children. Another need which is not mentioned is the need to be healthy physically by executing physical exercises and looking fir among other children. This need is necessary to identify as there is a significant difference in terms of physical activity among Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes.
According to Plotnick and Henderson (1998), children with Type 1 diabetes require general health care and should be enrolled in a primary care practice to receive care independent of or parallel to their diabetes coverage (p. 49). At the same time, the research does not propose a defined recommendation for children with Type 2 diabetes. This is where the need analysis should be directed. Raine, Donaldson, Gregory, and Van-Vliet (2006) note that a typical examination of diabetes in children does not guarantee effective and credible results. In dealing with diabetes in children, it is necessary to take into account the following elements: diet management, diabetes management and child care. As Plotnick and Henderson (1998) propose, diabetes is largely a disease of home management (p. 49). However, the process of diabetes treatment involves both the home and clinical environments. Menon and Sperling (2003) also recognize the need for psychological approach to children and adolescents with diabetes.
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For this reason, the target population is not solely children with diabetes but respondents from different locations with different set of cultural values and traditions. In order for the research to give answers to the key questions proposed, it is recommended to use two types of target population: children with diabetes (both Type 1 and Type 2) and children with various social backgrounds selected randomly to enhance research reliability.
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