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Lisa M. Brown’s Teaching Portfolio
Educational Philosophy "Exceptional human beings must be given exceptional educational treatment, treatment which takes into account their special difficulties. Further, we can show that despite abnormality, human beings can fulfill their social role within the community, especially if they find understanding, love and guidance.” ~ Hans Asperger
Educational Philosophy The above quote, as a special education teacher, is what I hope to achieve every day. I especially like how he uses the term human beings. First and foremost, our students are human beings with feelings and ideas that should be heard, considered and respected. I believe that schooling should be practical and provide sound instruction that prepares students to live life. For students with special needs, this is the greatest education we can provide. I believe as teachers we wear many hats. We should have knowledge of the subjects we are teaching, but more importantly, we should be nurturing and managing both our classroom and students to create an environment in which they are happy, comfortable and which stimulates a desire to learn. As teachers, we should have the highest expectations of our students, and should never limit them. My goal as a teacher is to create a classroom where diversity is nurtured and to create a classroom community in which respect is given and received. I believe that learning, to an extent should be student driven. I believe in structure for students, and that there should be curriculum standards, but there is more than one way to meet those standards. I feel that as a special education teacher I should be open-minded to multiple methods of learning and teaching for my students.
This is my brother Michael. Michael has special needs. He has a disease called Tuberous Sclerosis (TSC). This causes seizures, mental retardation and behavioral issues. Individuals with TSC often exhibit autistic-like behaviors.
Having Michael as a sibling truly allows me to put myself in the shoes of the families of the special needs student.
Thank-you notes and notes from students One of the students made “I survived MCAS” bookmarks for their classmates and made these for myself and the classroom teacher.
Letter of Recommendation by Erin McKenna Banks “Lisa is always able to see the whole child in each student she worked with”
Letter of Recommendation by Erin McKenna Banks – pg 2 “Observing her interactions with other teachers, specialists, interns and aides, I note true eagerness to improve instruction and student achievement.”
Letter of Recommendation by Barbara Levine “promoted opportunities for cooperative learning and multimodal instruction” “demonstrated a willingness to incorporate feedback in a professional manner”
Letter of Recommendation by Christy Bordieri “Lisa faces every challenge with confidence and a positive attitude.” “Lisa has a quiet friendly nature that children re immediately drawn to. However, she is able to handle the most difficult children and situations.”
Received positive feedback from advisor that this was an engaging way to start a lesson Lesson Plan Sample #1 This was a lesson for the Learning Center
Use of modifications to curriculum Possible re-write of IEP objective shows understanding of IEP objectives and ability to write effective objectives
Lesson Plan Sample #2 This lesson is part of an science unit on mammals that I was teaching weekly in the inclusive general education classroom Included ELL standards for this lesson for the ELL students in the class.
Gave students a word search with the new vocabulary to complete if they finished their group work early
Received positive feedback from Simmons Supervisor on the lesson closure and assessment portion of this lesson.
Worked with general education classroom teacher that took over mid-year to create new classroom rules.
Discussed and came up with rules with students and used their language in creating the posters.
Created rules for small group instruction with students.
Used a sticker system in which students earned stickers for good behavior and then a reward.
Observations of Other Classrooms During my practicum, I had the opportunity to observe other classrooms at Devotion, in order to observe more experienced teachers both deliver instruction and manage their classrooms. This helped me to develop my skills as an educator. Noted classroom environment and organization Noted teaching style
Observations by Supervising Practitioner A rating of 3 is Advanced “Lisa is extremely organized, resourceful and reliable” “She was generous in her praise…consistent in her response to the student. By end of the day, he realized there were no “gray” areas in this plan.”
Special Education Specific - Moderate Disabilities Pre-k through Grade 8
The contract was co-created by myself, the ABA specialist, the classroom teacher and special educator.
These are daily schedule sheets that are used for a student.
They were co-created by myself and two special educators.
The student has 2 jobs that must be completed and then will earn a break.
The student earns additional minutes for exhibiting positive behaviors.
In addition, the sheets act as data sheets for the teachers and ABA specialist.
IEP and Progress Report Writing Have assisted in writing IEP and have re-written goals for IEP’s for Lesson Plans, per Simmons requirements, to make the goals more measurable. Example : Student will ask for assistance when unsure of directions 90% of the time. Possible rewrite to make it measurable: Student will ask for assistance when unsure of directions in 4 out of 5 opportunities. Regularly took data for Progress Reports and wrote summaries for supervising teacher to use in progress reports.
Formal and Informal Assessments FormalAssessments InformalAssessments Observed testing and/or given during Practicum: WJ III DRA QRI Through coursework, familiar with WIAT KeyMath GORT TOWL Taking behavioral and academic data. Assessment during and after lessons.
Reading Instruction Reading by the Rules Use the Reading by the Rules system to provide small group reading instruction in the Learning Center on a daily basis. Teach small group, inclusive lessons in the general education classroom using guided reading. Reading courses at Simmons RDG 406 RDG 410
Incorporated technology into lessons when I could, but access to technology during my practicum was limited.
Accommodations and Modifications of the Curriculum I created this using readwritething.org for two students who were working on A Toad for Tuesday with a reading group in the 3rd grade classroom. The students were having difficulty completing the guided reading packet, which required them to write a great deal and also infer in some cases. This allowed the students complete the basic information about their reading in an engaging manner and was chosen due to their mutual interest in Pokémon trading cards.
Accommodations and Modifications of the Curriculum Modified Student Homework Samples
Thank you for taking the time to look at my portfolio and for your consideration. Regards, Lisa Brown