Special Education Special Education is defined as specifically designed instruction provided by the school system that meets the unique needs of students identified disabled according to federal and state eligibility criteria.
Least Restrictive Environment Federal special education laws mandate that students are taught in the least restrictive environment Least Restrictive Environment guarantees a students right to be educated in a setting mot like that of peers with out disabilities in which students can be successful with appropriate supports provided
Inclusion For the majority of students with disabilities the least restrictive environment is the general classroom. The act of schools integrating students into general classrooms is called inclusion.
Accommodations To enable students with disabilities to be educated with their peers who do not have disabilities, they must receive supports such as instructional accommodations and assistive technology.
Assistive Technology Assistive Technology is any device that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of a person with a disability Different types of assistive technologies and instructional accommodations are needed for different types of disabilities
Mild Disabilities Students with mild disabilities have difficulty meeting the academic and social demands of general education classrooms.
AT for Mild Disabilities Writing Word processors and related software programs is an important assistive technology for students with writing problems. These technologies can help with the mechanics and process of writing. Mechanical writing issues are assisted through programs that check spelling, provide dictionaries and thesauruses. Word predicting software helps students recall words.
AT for Mild Disabilities Reading E books used with AT to read the story aloud. The programs can provide verbal pronunciation of words and syllables as well as providing definitions of words. Software tutorial programs the increase reading skills
Instructional Accommodations for Mild Disabilities Capitalize on the student's strengths; Provide high structure and clear expectations; Use short sentences and a simple vocabulary; Provide opportunities for success in a supportive atmosphere to help build self-esteem; Allow flexibility in classroom procedures (e.g., allowing the use of tape recorders for note-taking and test-taking when students have trouble with written language); Make use of self-correcting materials, which provide immediate feedback without embarrassment;
ADHD Attention Deficit –Hyperactivity Disorder is a medical condition in which students have significant inability to attend, excessive motor activity, and/or impulsivity.
AT for ADHD Electronic math worksheet software enables students to organize and work through problems on a computer screen. Talking calculators have a built-in speech synthesizer that reads aloud each number, symbol, or operation key a student presses, as well as the answer Audio books and reading software Optical character recognition (OCR) programs allow a student to scan printed material into a computer or handheld unit. The scanned text is then read aloud by a speech synthesis/screen reading system. OC Speech synthesizers/screen reader systems can display and read aloud text on a computer screen, including text that has been typed by a student, scanned in from printed pages (books, letters), or material from the Internet. Portable word processors are lightweight devices that look like a computer keyboard with a screen. They can be helpful to ADHD children who have trouble with handwriting. Speech-recognition programs allow a student to read aloud into a microphone and see his words appear on a computer screen. The software is especially helpful for students whose oral language skills are superior to their writing skills. Word-prediction software “predicts” the word the user intends to type, expanding his vocabulary and improving written expression.
Instructional Accommodations for ADHD Posting daily schedules and assignments . Calling attention to schedule changes . Setting specific times for specific tasks. Designing a quiet work space for use upon request . Providing regularly scheduled and frequent breaks . Using computerized learning activities. Teaching organization and study skills . Supplementing verbal instructions with visual instructions. Modifying test delivery.
Hearing Impairment Hearing impairment is a condition in which an individual ha the inability or limited ability to receive information auditorily such that it interferes with learning.
AT for Hearing Impairment Hearing aids are an amplification devices for persons with residual hearing. Cochlear Implants are devices that electronically transmit sound to the brain bypassing the ear Sound field uses speakers so the teachers voice is amplified for the whole class C-print is a system in which a typist enters the teachers lecture and class comments into a laptop computer for simultaneous display on a second computer used by the student. FM system is where the teacher wears a microphones and the student wears a receiver. Closed Captioning is when words are printed on the bottom of television screen to enable students to watch videos.
Instructional Accommodations for Hearing Impairment Regular speech, language, and auditory training from a specialist. Services of an interpreter for those students who use manual communication. Favorable seating in the class to facilitate speechreading. captioned films/videos. Assistance of a note taker, who takes notes for the student with a hearing loss, so that the student can fully attend to instruction. Instruction for the teacher and peers in alternate communication methods, such as sign language; and counseling.
Resources http://www.ericdigests.org/2003-1/assistive.htm http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/print/6585.html http://www.parrotpublishing.com/Inclusion_Chapter_6.htm Including Students with Special Needs, A Practical Guide For Classroom Teachers, 5th Edition