William Franke Discussion Board 2COLLAPSE
As I have yet to teach my own classroom, I have not had the experience yet of picking my own strategies. The one I would like to first employ are strategies aimed at working with children with emotional/behavioral disabilities. I currently work one on one with a second-grade student and he has a behavioral intervention plan. This plan outlines behaviors he is currently partaking in and the behaviors that we need to help alleviate. He loves to interact with the other students in the classroom so peer tutoring if very beneficial for him. With input from the parents, a behavioral contract puts everything in the open for the student. What is expected of them and the teachers and how they can both achieve these goals throughout their school year.
Another teaching strategy I would like to use would be targeted to children with intellectual disabilities. Music is the universal language and as such, can be implemented with the universal design for learning. The universal design for learning allows for multiple methods be used to help the student acquire information, alternative ways for the student to demonstrate what they know and taps into the interests of the student (Kirk, et. al, 2015, section 6-6b). I would use music to help teach students subject that may otherwise be difficult to use. One example I think of was used in a cartoon called the Animaniacs. In this cartoon, they made a song to teach all the state capitals in the United States. This simple song helped me remember all 50 state capitals. While not a traditional way of teaching this subject, it was very memorable and has stuck with me for the past 25 years.
Finally, I would like to focus on students with ADD/ADHD. These students are often overlooked in the school system. The traditional classroom setting does not work on many students with severe ADHD. One of my own children has severe ADHD and cannot sit still for longer than a few minutes. One thing that really helps him is allowing him frequent breaks to let his mind do something other than staring at a piece of homework. Because he is homeschooled, I have been lucky to be able to pick what curriculum interests him. He thrives using technology to do his work, rather than doing it with pencil and paper. ADHD children need the right tools for them and the IEP process would lay out these methods for each child.
All children are different. While children may be diagnosed with similar disabilities, they will all react differently to the teaching methods used. IEP’s are living documents that should reflect not only a student’s strengths, but their interests as well. Adapting methods to each student is crucial for their continued success.
Kirk, S., Gallagher, J., & Coleman, M. (2015). Educating exceptional children (14th ed.). Stamford, CT: Cengage. ISBN: 9781337065733.