Teaching Empathy

Organization: Educating Outside the Lines

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  • Deerfield, IL

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Educating Outside the Lines brings ability awareness programming to schools.

When Patty’s middle-school-aged daughter with Cerebral Palsy told her she felt invisible at school, Patty set out to teach her classmates, and students all over, how to empathize with people of all abilities.

Immersion strategy

Educating Outside the Lines embeds in schools to bring students thousands of touchpoints for empathy over the course of an immersive week. Physical, hidden, and developmental disabilities are discussed through engaging student speakers and hands-on activities in every class: from science, to english, to gym, to art. The immersion is what sets EOTL programming apart, and creates the important pathways for empathy and social emotional learning.


Shorty Awards


impact impact

Educating Outside the Lines

After Small Forces captured the pilot of Educating Outside the Lines, founder Patty O’Machel used the tool to pitch to PTAs and school administrations. She successfully brought her disability awareness training to 16 schools in her first year, and became a speaker at educational seminars that reached thousands of administrators.

  • IPA

    Led a webinar for Illinois Principals Association, reaching thousands of administrators.

  • 7.5K

    Educating Outside the Lines reached 7,500 students in 16 schools in year one