Instruction for Children with Special Needs

Student Summary Sheet: Share Information with Teachers
Situation: 

I’m a primary school special educator in a large school district where students transition to several different upper elementary schools when they leave second grade.  Due to the size of our district, it’s nearly impossible to meet with all of the receiving teachers for my students at the end of the school year.  I’d like these teachers to know more about my kids before they start in the fall.  I know they’ll get the IEPs, but I wondered if you had any suggestions on how I can help the new teachers learn about my students?

For Adults Only: Team Building with Reminders and Reinforcers
Situation: 

I have a great team in my classroom but sometimes we are not all on the same page when it comes to providing preventative or consequential interventions with our students. One person might talk too much to a student, giving attention to behaviors of concern and inadvertently increasing the behavior while another person may not do enough. Sometimes even  the basics of student interactions are just not there. What can I do to make us a more cohesive team with providing  our interventions?

Using Sticky Notes and Strips to Adapt a Task
Situation: 

I am a paraprofessional who works with a student in regular education settings and in a Support Room. He has a very hard time working. I’ve learned many strategies and have used them with some success but sometimes he will just groan and refuse to work. The other day he was doing so well and had finished 3 papers but refused to do the last one. I know he could do it but he just wouldn’t think and fill in the answers. What do I do in those cases?  I hate to just say he doesn’t have to do it – that seems like going backwards and giving in.

Brain Breaks
Situation: 

We have many double periods of math throughout the week. It makes it very difficult for some of my students to continue attending. What can I do to help them (and me) get through these times?

Embedding Goals and Objectives
Situation: 

I am having difficulty finding time to teach my students goals/objectives. How can I get this accomplished?

Visual Recipes: A Way to Increase Participation in Cooking Classes
Situation: 

I’m a Middle School FACS (Family and Consumer Sciences) teacher and I have a student with special needs in my class of 20 general education students.  She’s not disruptive, but she also doesn’t participate very much.  How can I help her get more out of my cooking classes?

“Build Your Own Schedule”: A Structured Choice Visual Strategy
Situation: 

I have a 3rd grade student in my Learning Support class who needs extra help with most academic subjects.  She becomes very resistant when I try to work with her on a one-to-one basis.  If I do get her to work with me, she only lasts a few minutes before she starts asking when we’ll be done or she refuses to work altogether.  How can I get her to focus and work cooperatively?

Learning Contracts
Situation: 

I have a student in my class who is always behind schedule on projects and comes up with a million excuses as to why the work is not completed. Is there anything I can do to help her take responsibility and ownership of her learning?

Response Cards
Situation: 

I am a Learning Support Teacher, and when I observe my kids in the general education class, they don’t seem to participate at all. While other kids raise their hands often, my students tend to just sit there doodling or daydreaming. How can I get the regular education teachers to engage them more?

Green Dot to Red Dot: Visual Chunking Strategy to Teach Classwork Independence
Situation: 

One of the students in my Learning Support class requires prompting and reassurance for every problem on his math worksheet.  I want him to complete tasks more independently but he is constantly asking me for help or if his answer is correct.  I can’t work with other students who also need my help with all of these interruptions.  Do you have any suggestions?