From Story Kits to “Speak ‘N Write”: 10 Ideas for Including Students with Disabilities in Literacy Instruction Paula Kluth, Ph.D. [email_address] www.paulakluth.com ------------------ Inclusion Works! 2008
an “immersion approach” with Jay’s voice output communication aid
all of the students were given the same overlay to use during class activities
the classroom teacher used an enlarged copy of the core vocabulary overlay during whole class instruction & used the VOCA and/or paper overlays to provide modeling, restatements, etc.
By the end of one year, Jay had access to an expanded set of 80-100 curriculum-related messages on the DynaMyte. He demonstrated the ability to use Boardmaker symbols and switched easily between the DynaMyte, computer, and paper overlays. He: --communicated single words and word combos using the VOCA to make requests --he also demonstrated the ability to recognize words in print (recognizing 8 words with 100% accuracy and 13 with 75% accuracy) ------ “ We are beginning to realize that Jay’s performance is linked to how well we perform. If we don’t support Jay well, we won’t do well.”
Traditionally, literacy has been conceived as a rigid commodity acquired during childhood through individual exposure to direct instruction in a series of subskills arranged hierarchically (Kliewer, retrieved 2006 http://www.uni.edu/inclusion/index.html ).
We argue for a social model of multiple literacies that are dynamic and constructed in interaction among individuals
Invite Students Into the “Literate Community” (Kliewer,1998)
In classrooms where all students are accepted in the literate community: “all children are considered active participants in the construction of literate meanings within specific contexts. This assumption of literate value then serves as the core from which literate capacities are realized” (Kliewer, p. 100).
In such classrooms teachers:
challenge and question school practices that marginalize learners (e.g., exclusion, tracking)
create communities that encourage all students to teach each other, to showcase talents, take risks, to create, to collaborate and to see themselves as readers, writers, and thinkers.
#2- “Invite” Students into Literature Circles & Book Clubs
Feature books written by people with disabilities -some are excellent choices for literature circles.
Typically students are encouraged to bring written or drawn notes to their circles. If a student is not able to create notes on his or her own:
provide teacher-created notes
have the student work from notes of a peer
have the student write notes or highlight passages on copies of the pages) so the text can serve as notes for discussion.
Create a new role for a student who cannot participate in the group as it is typically structured: topic changer, discussion recorder, graphic note-taker, etc.
Show a videotape of a book club before students participate in the structure; some students will do better with an informal and open-ended activity when they have visual examples of what it should look like.
Be explicit about what types of comments, feedback, and interaction you expect from students. If you want students to ask “clarifying questions”, provide a list of examples.
#3-Adapt & Personalize the Standards Standard Adapted standard Assessment Students will be able to use appropriate mechanics, usage, and conventions of language. When using his Alphasmart to copy sentences from the chalkboard, Ross will include all punctuation. Keep two work samples per week. Students will differentiate fact from opinion across texts. When given a paragraph of an informational text to read, Ross will identify one fact from that paragraph. Offer Ross an opportunity to practice this skill during science and social studies lessons. On a checklist, keep a record of how many times he answers correctly. Students will identify literacy elements in stories (e.g., characters, setting, plot). Using Kidspiration software, Ross will create a story map that includes at least three story events. Print and collect the map from each story. Review with Ross and provide feedback.
Standard Adapted standard Assessment Students will be able to use appropriate mechanics, usage, and conventions of language. During DOL, Tiala will (a) use the pointer to indicate the beginning of the sentence and (b) hand the pointer to peers as they approach the board. Videotape quarterly. Students will differentiate fact from opinion across texts. During the classroom exercise where students stand when they hear a fact and sit when they hear an opinion, Tiala will participate without prompts. Anecdotal reporting. Students will identify literacy elements in stories (e.g., characters, setting, plot). Using her TANGO communication device, Tiala will choose a character (e.g., frog, princess) for a group story from 5 possible options. Keep a checklist of options and selected choices.
for an article on how 10 ways to adapt text, see my website: http://www.paulakluth.com/articles/textbookadapt.html #4- Adapt the Text
Partners look over a piece of text and decide together how far they will read silently before stopping to “say something”. The “something” might be a question, a brief summary, a
key point, an interesting new idea or a new connection.
2. Once they have reached the chosen stopping point, both partners say something.
3. Partners continue the process until the selection is completed.
4. The whole group engages in a discussion of the text.
Say Something is a paired reading strategy for constructing meaning from text-based information. Through structured exchanges, participants develop relationships between new information and what they all ready know or believe. #5- Say Something!
Adaptations to Say Something (from: Udvari-Solner & Kluth, 2007)
Say Something can be used with non-text material. Students may be partnered with one student examining text on a topic and the other examining visual media (photos, pictures). At an agreed upon time frame (e.g., after examining the materials for 3 minutes) students can stop and “say something.”
Students may also be paired with readings on the same topic but at different reading levels. At the stopping points students share what they have gained from their own specific reading.
Say Something can be implemented with one person in the partnership reading aloud.
For students who read at a different pace, the student who completes the reading first can write down her say-something comment while her partner completes the reading.
If a student uses a communication board, pictures, or symbols to communicate, that individual can select a picture or response to share at the end of the section (e.g., “That was interesting”; “I didn’t understand that”; “That was silly”). To teach and reinforce the new communication system, the peer might be encouraged to use the system as well.
Figure 5.9. Mystery in the Night Woods – collaborative 4 Corners Comprehension #6- 4 Corners Comprehension
The school gave me all sorts of extra help with reading and I couldn’t even
remember one letter from the other. However much anyone taught me, it just
would not sink in. I had an assessment by an educational psychologist when I
was seven years and eight months old and my reading age was not assessable
because I just couldn’t read anything. The next day Mum got a phone call from
the school asking her to come in and see them.
She told me that she was very worried as that usually meant that I was having a
massive tantrum, but when she got there the teacher had something that they
just couldn’t wait to tell. I had picked up a copy of A Midsummer Night’s
Dream , which the teacher was using to show how plays are written. It seems
that I opened the book and began to read it fluently. How weird is that?
(Jackson, p. 117)
Jackson, L. (1998). Freaks, geeks, and Asperger syndrome. Kingsley.
Jackson’s advice for those working with students with autism is to “never give up on a child who seems unable to learn to read”.
Literacy & Disability Resources Books Downing, J. (2005). Teaching literacy to students with significant disabilities. Corwin Press. Keefe, C.H. (1996). Label-free learning: Supporting learners with disabilities. York, Maine: Stenhouse. Kliewer, C. (1998). Schooling children with Down syndrome. New York: Teachers College Press. Kluth, P. & Chandler-Olcott, K. (2007). A land we can share. Baltimore: Brookes. Moline, S. (1995). I see what you mean: Children at work with visual information. York, Maine: Stenhouse. Oelwein, P.L. (1995). Teaching reading to children with Down syndrome: A guide for parents and teachers. Bethesda, MD: Woodbine House. Parker, K. (1997). Jamie: A literacy story. York, Maine: Stenhouse.