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Title Series Name: Book Number: ISBN 13: Published:

The Inclusion Toolkit – BOOK A: Planning 553A 978-1-86968-409-9 2007

Author Jan Thorburn Acknowledgements User Friendly Resources wishes to acknowledge the work of the following people in the various stages of publishing this resource. Designer: Adrienne Morley, Digital Design Illustrator: Geraldine Sloane Editor: Pauline Scanlan PUBLISHERS User Friendly Resources

New Zealand

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Website www.userfr.com Copying Notice This is a photocopiable book and permission is given to schools or teachers who buy this resource to make photocopies or transparencies of all pages. The copies must be for internal school use only, and may not be given or sold to other educational institutions or teachers from other institutions. Copyright Š User Friendly Resources 2007.

User Friendly Resources User Friendly Resources is an educational publishing company which specialises in developing photocopiable resources for students, teachers and school management. Our resources range across the curriculum and are aimed at primary and secondary school levels.


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Contents Introduction .................................................................................5 Section 1: Where do I start? .................................................. 6 - 11 Section 2: How do I decide what to teach her? ...................12 - 15 Section 3: Organising the Individual Education Plan ........16 - 24 Section 4: The IEP meeting .................................................25 - 33 Section 5: Writing up the IEP ..............................................34 - 40 Section 6: Implementing the IEP ........................................41 - 51

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Introduction

w

hat do you actually do as a regular class teacher when you learn that a student in your class has special needs?

Including a student with special needs in your programme does not have to be as difficult as it can sometimes be made to sound. And the IEP (Individual Education Plan) can be, is supposed to be, an excellent tool to help this process - not an extra burden. This handbook shows teachers how to respond professionally in the first few days of enrolling their special needs student, and later how to harness their own considerable skills and knowledge (as well as that of others) to devise and implement a practical and realistic educational plan.

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1

Where do I start?

y

our student with special needs will arrive in class in the same way as every new student, a bit shy, perhaps a bit anxious, wanting to succeed, wanting to make friends, wanting to fit in, wanting her teacher to like her. As a trained teacher you have the basic skills and practical adaptability to teach any student. There will also be some extra skills and strategies you’ll want or need to learn and that’s what specialist support services, and books like this, provide. For now, just allocate the student a desk and welcome her to the class.

FirsT sTePs - before the student arrives 1. remind yourself that the student with special needs is an ordinary student first and foremost. You will be able to meet many of her needs without having any extra special knowledge. 2. look through any notes that have arrived about the student. If the student has arrived with an IEP (Individual Education Plan) this is a very useful first source of information. Read it through, or any other reports and notes available. 3. make some rough initial notes and headings for yourself from these files or from your own observations if you have met the student at this stage. I find the following headings useful when I first scan a new student’s file or IEP. Special learning areas/needs This gives you a broad idea of future focus areas. Instead of feeling panic wondering about the type and extent of special needs a student has, you’ll find that making a practical list like this demystifies the situation, and makes it manageable. Strengths/Interests Noting the positives helps you see the student in a broader context. It also helps you to realise that this student, like all students, will bring her share of joy and satisfaction to your teaching job. 6

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Section 1:

Where do I start?

Likes/Rewards/Reinforcers You need to know what your student with special needs enjoys if you’re to plan a balanced and rewarding programme for him or her. You can’t assume that all students enjoy the same things. It is also important to know what the student is likely to find rewarding so that, if motivation or behaviour management is necessary, you can plan effective behaviour contracts. Here is an example of first notes I have taken on a student:

MARIA Special learning areas/needs

Very loose pencil grip/undeveloped writing

Reading/interest waxes and wanes

Doesn‛t speak much with adults

Tends not to complete tasks

Strengths

Sits and attends at mat time

Can speak in two word utterances to adults

Seems to speak more to peers

Enjoys being with the other students/ interacts and fools about

When focused/motivated shows ability to complete tasks

Likes/rewards

Likes being with the other students

Playing - with puzzles, the computer

Enjoys notes of praise sent home for parents

4. Ask her parents all about her: -

What do they think you should know about her?

-

What do they want for her?

-

What would they like her to achieve at school this term?

-

Has any particular problem come up in the past?

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Section 1:

Where do I start?

-

How was it dealt with?

-

How would they like it dealt with?

-

What things does their daughter really like to do?

-

What is she good at?

-

What do they want from you, as teacher?

-

Would they be interested in coming in and meeting with you again soon, say in two weeks, to have a chat about how things are going?

When you ask these questions you are not necessarily promising to carry out all of the parents’ requests. You may find some of their wishes too difficult to achieve, or you may find that you don’t agree with some of their ideas. However, you are hearing their views and promising to take them into account. Parents have a wealth of knowledge about their own son or daughter, and good communication between you will make your job a lot easier as well as more fulfilling. 5. Ask visiting advisers all about her. The first talk with an adviser or visiting teacher may feel overwhelming. There will seem to be a lot to remember - perhaps a lot of terminology, and references to technology you are unfamiliar with. Interrupt if you start to feel overloaded, and ask them to tell you what the three or four main things are that you need to know at this stage. Ask for written material to take away and read. Ask that the adviser return the next week when you’ve had time to digest some of the new ideas, and to get to know the student more. (On the other hand, you may not find this initial talk at all overwhelming. It may be simply reassuring).

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Section 1:

Where do I start?

neXT sTePs - after the student has arrived 1. welcome the student and begin to establish a relaxed warm relationship with her. Make sure the students in the class welcome her too. 2. carry out some quick initial assessments of your own: -

listen to her read (from a very easy book initially). If you are in a primary school, carry out a Reading Running Record assessment;

-

ask her to write her name, address (if feasible) or some other simple words/sentences. Observe her handwriting and spelling ability and consider where this skill level fits in your class;

-

do some simple mathematics, either some written equations/ sums, or some classifying and counting using concrete objects.

Be sure to begin these assessments with tasks easier than her level, and slowly make the activities harder. Finish with something she can succeed at and praise her efforts (not her successes). It is as important to establish a relationship at this time as it is to assess the student. She will not perform her best or possibly at all if she does not feel safe. 3. observe the student socially. Watch how your student interacts socially. But be careful not to set her up for failure or difficult social experiences. Place her in the group where she is likely to be happy, with your most co-operative and supportive students. Give them all a relatively easy task which they will enjoy doing together.

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Section 1:

Where do I start?

social observation Activity: chArT •

The students, in groups of five to seven, make a collage picture chart on a particular subject, for example: -

Things we like

-

Things about winter

-

Things that cost less than £1

-

Things that cost over £100 and less than £500.

Supply magazines, paper, glue and scissors. The important thing is that this task allows the students to work as independently as possible, freeing you up to observe the new student. notice the following: –

Is he getting on with the task?

Why not?

Can he do it?

Does he share with the others?

Are the others working co-operatively with him?

Do the students in the class need some guidance and role modelling from you on how to include him?

Also note any possible learning goals that emerge for the new student, and any strengths or skills. Intercept if any conflict occurs between the students, and adapt the task for success.

4. Prioritise your goals. If a student has arrived in your class with little early back-up support, the first goal is to introduce her in a happy and successful way to your class. The next goal is to find out as much as you can about her. During the first few weeks, you’ll probably be wise to make academic goals a secondary priority. Of course, the activities you organise will still all be appropriate learning experiences, and it is important the student begins work like the others. The difference lies in your focus and emphasis. It is one of support, building positive times, and observing, assessing and collecting information.

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Section 1:

Where do I start?

lATer sTePs 1. set goals week-by-week at first. Check them off at the end of each week. If you haven’t achieved your goals, adjust them. You have probably been too ambitious. Some examples of goals in the early weeks of the student’s arrival might be:

• JASON will come into class when the bell rings and go straight to

his desk.

• KAREN will get out the correct book for each subject and head

the page up on the left with the date.

• AMY will learn where to put her bag.

2. don’t be too hard on yourself. Teachers tend to be over-ambitious at first with the goals they set. Your plan is just an initial one while you get to know the student and get your class programme up and running. It is not meant to be the ‘dream Individual Education Plan’ at this stage. Even if you did formulate a detailed plan prior to the student’s full time attendance in your class, you still need this period of adjustment time. 3. Find other support in the school. If there is a teacher in your school who has, or has had, a student with special needs in their class, arrange to meet after school or at lunch time for an informal chat. Even if your colleague’s student had very different needs to your student, you will probably find it reassuring to talk through your concerns, decision-making processes, and the planning that you are working on. Your colleague will probably tell you of similar concerns to yours, and of how many fears were not borne out. She can also tell you how she dealt with those fears that were borne out! Regardless, just talking it over with someone who has ‘been there’ will help.

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s e c t i o n   2

How do I decide what to teach her?

P

lanning an education programme for your student with special needs is not as ominous as you think. In fact, after teachers have experienced having a student with special needs they are nearly always a lot more relaxed the next time, because they know how much planning is commonsense, and how often the student can fit in with the general programme, with a number of adaptations. These teachers have also experienced the satisfaction and challenge of working in partnership with others - parents, other professionals, the teacher assistant, to devise and implement the programme. If you are a secondary teacher and a special needs student is mainstreamed into your form class, which you might also teach, it is possible that you might need to assist in co-ordinating the planning for this student’s learning between a number of other teachers. Remember that every student in school is firstly required to be taught the national or state curriculum. Students with special needs are not an exception. They should be included in as much of the regular school life and lessons and learnings as possible. However, standard school programmes on their own will probably not meet the special needs of a student, even when you have effectively adapted materials to that student’s ability. Every special needs student has to be looked at individually to ascertain what their specific learning goals may be. The regular teacher is not expected to determine these individual goals and programmes alone. In fact, it is undesirable that one person should determine them. You are expected, however, to play a part in a team of people, including the parents, in the planning process.

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Section 2:

How do I decide what to teach her?

look at an individuAl educATion PlAn 1. look in your student’s file for her most recent ieP or ask your resource teacher for another student’s plan. 2. read over the goals. Notice what they are. Notice the specific description of the goals, and the language used. Think about whether, from what you know of your student, you would like to add to them or change them. 3. notice who attended the ieP planning meeting. Ideally the following people should be present at an IEP planning meeting: –

the parents or caregivers,

the regular class teacher,

the specialist teacher,

and the learning assistant.

Sometimes, for the first IEP meeting at a new school or for a particularly important meeting, people such as the school principal, or the educational psychologist from specialist education services may attend. 4. look at the date when these goals are to be reviewed. Evaluating the goals is a key component of the plan. 5. notice who has been named as responsible for the achievement of the different goals. 6. Find when the next ieP meeting is due.

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14

when greeted.

without prompting.

same basket each week.

Set up routine using

Teacher

o

offi ce.

Learn to do work on arrival

o

7. Does photocopying for school

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weekends

:

bus to town centre.

Brother on

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Practise on weekends.

I

Learn to travel independently on

K

6. Can ride on a bus with friend.

l

Community and Vocational

Section 2:

Student-buddy

O

Join school fi tness club.

O

5. Walks to school.

T

remembers a step.

clothing praising when Caroline

N

Become fi tter.

independently after swim.

O

costume at PE.

I

Aide/Parents

S

Non-verbally indicate each item of

U

Learn to shower and dress

l

4. Can change into swimming

vocab. and practise in community.

Aide/teacher

C

Self Care and Health

name.

Select 2 words from functional

N

Learn 3-6 basic sight vocabulary.

Unit teacher

Unit teacher

resPonsiBiliTy

I

3. Can recognise own printed

daily practice

daily practice

starchart/praise/

meThod

E

and sign blank forms.

Learn to write signature

Learn to reply to greetings.

oBJecTive

How do I decide what to teach her?

H

2. Can write fi rst name.

1. Caroline gives eye contact

Language and Communication

currenT PerFormAnce

nAme: Caroline Chan

individuAl educATion PlAn eXAmPle 1 dATe oF BirTh: 10 May 1997 dATe oF meeTing: 3 March dATe oF neXT meeTing: 15 May

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instruction.

peers.

but little interaction.

- include Sam in all activities using multi-level

- supply Sam with tissues daily.

- regular interaction with

to blow nose.

5. Inclusion: Joins others

4. Sometimes remembers

- see ear/nose specialist.

home/school

- encourage talking at school and home.

How do I decide what to teach her? teacher

parents

parents

k

- will blow nose regularly.

teacher

- set up peer learning activities daily.

phrases.

o

phrases.

o

lang therapist/

B

- speech language programme to continue.

:

- expand language use and

other words.

T

parents

I

3. Speaks in 2/3 word

- purchase similar writing books to classmates.

K

words.

l

name and traces over

teacher

O

- word matching.

O

- daily copying under own interest sentences.

- one-to-one

- continue to enjoy books.

teacher

T

- learn to copy under other

- page turning

- full involvement in class reading programme.

N

2. Writing. Can copy

about print

O

I

parents

S

line.

- emphasis on interest and enjoyment.

- learn to follow onto next

U

developing concepts

l

who aide/parents

C

sTrATegies/resPonsiBiliTies - a lot of 1:1 reading with aide and parents.

N

shorT Term goAls - learn to read picture clues.

I

sTrengThs/ATTAinmenTs 1. Reading. Sam is

Age: 6

E

dATe: 3 March school: Hill School clAss: Year 2

H

individuAl educATion PlAn eXAmPle 2 neXT review dATe: 3 May nAme: Sam Reid TeAcher: Ms B. Whitehead room: 10 dATe oF BirTh: 18 June 2000

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Section 2:

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Inclusion Toolkit - Book A  

Inclusion Toolkit - Book A