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From GNETS to Home School

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From GNETS to Home School

  1. 1. Coastal Georgia Comprehensive Academy Steve Derr, Principal
  2. 2. Transition  The transition of students with severe emotional/behavioral disabilities back to their home schools may present challenges and opportunities for to all stakeholders involved.  There are various things administrators, teachers and parents can do in order to have a more seamless transition.
  3. 3. Common Characteristic Perceptions for Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disorders Poor self-concept Unaware Explosive Has mood swings Has poor self-control Intermittent attendance Is self-abusive Is disruptive, acts out Adults are angry with them Seen as loners, dropouts, dopers, or air heads Seen as dangerous and rebellious Seen as weird, dumb Rebellious Peers see them as entertaining Viewed as resistive (Rizza & Morrison, 2003)
  4. 4. Possible Subcategories for Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities Behavioral/Defiance Depression Anxiety Personality Disorders (Rizza & Morrison, 2003)
  5. 5. Four Major Categories  Social skills instruction  Behavioral/Defiance, Anxiety, Depression  Cooperative learning/peer tutoring  Depression, Anxiety, Behavioral/Defiance  Classroom management techniques  Behavioral/Defiance, Anxiety  Promote positive self-image  Behavioral/Defiance, Depression, Anxiety, Personality Disorders (Rizza & Morrison, 2003)
  6. 6. Social Skills Instruction  Gilles & Smith (2003) explain that without age appropriate social skills students will fall behind academically and will have difficulty making and keeping friends.  Special education teachers explicitly teach social skills, and provide students practice.  It is imperative that students get “real world” practice with skills shortly after they are taught.  GNETS teach the skills, but our students have little opportunity for practice in the general ED setting.
  7. 7. Strategies for Success  Give students and opportunity to meet their teachers and visit the school before the transition takes place.  Ask the receiving teacher to assign a “buddy” to help bridge the gap.  Introduce each skill at the beginning of a week to the whole class (5-10 mini- lesson)  Plan ahead for extra support with transitions and less structured times.  Use common strategies in a effort to build positive relations:  Engage in one-to-one interactions with children  Get on the child’s level for face-to-face interactions  Use a pleasant, calm voice and simple language  Provide warm, responsive physical contact  Follow the child’s lead and interest during play  Help children understand classroom expectations
  8. 8. Peer Tutoring  Bowman-Perrott, Greenwood, & Tapia (2007) suggest using peer tutoring with students with emotional/behavioral disabilities  It is important, for these students, to allow them an opportunity to be the tutor and the tutee  Some of the benefits include: practice with social skills, one-to-one instruction, opportunities to make errors without a large audience, and increased time spent on academic behaviors
  9. 9. Cooperative Groups  Groves (2006) states cooperative groups can be useful for students with social/emotional disabilities when done in a structured way  Assign roles to each member (time keeper, material manager, recorder, etc.)  Have each child get a chance to do each role
  10. 10. Identify the Plan for when the student needs extra support  Who will the student be able to access?  Develop a signal to let the teacher know they need to step out.  Have a viable plan in place for missed work—so that stepping out does not become a method for avoiding work.
  11. 11. Classroom Management Techniques The most effective classroom management techniques for students with emotional/behavioral disabilities are individualized reward systems and self-monitoring systems Reward systems allow students to save up tokens, points, or tickets that they earn for positive behavior and good class work. They then hand in these tokens, points, or tickets for a reinforcer of their choice Self-monitoring systems have students monitor their own progress at a selected skill at predetermined time intervals (De I’Etoile, 2005)
  12. 12. Strategies to avoid problems  Establish consistent routines and expectations.  Tell students early on about any schedule changes. Follow Behavior Intervention Plans. Keep written documentation of behavioral concerns. Set guidelines for what behavior constitutes removal from class and what process a student must follow to be allowed to return Provide previews of lessons, assignments, or assessments Minimize anxiety-triggering experiences
  13. 13. I have had a problem, now what?  Provide a cool down time for smaller issues.  “Cool down time” may look different for different ages and developmental levels of students.  Provide a safe place where the student can step away for a minute (quiet chair, desk in the corner, stand outside the door but in teacher’s view, pass to the bathroom..etc…).
  14. 14. Promote Positive Self-Image  Hunter and Jones (2006) explain that students with emotional/behavioral disabilities need more praise than the average student. If you provide them the attention they crave when they are doing the right thing, they often won’t feel the need to act out  Displaying student work promotes a positive self-image and a serious work ethic  Peer tutoring, which was mentioned earlier, also helps improve self-image  Make your class less “scary” by walking student through the steps of your lesson (stop the cycle of failure)  If the student has difficulty making choices, choosing topics, etc. provide student with a short list of ideas to choose from
  15. 15. There is a correlation between Academic deficits and EBD 50% of students with EBD drop out of school Students present more learning problems than their peers without disabilities Students often lack basic academic skills along with negative behaviors (U.S. Department of Education as quoted in Pierce, 2004; Reschly, 2006; Hallahan, 2009).
  16. 16. Improving Academic Outcomes for Students with EBD Differentiate instruction and scaffold learning Our students act other rather than display academic deficits. Break tasks down into smaller “chunks” and establish check-in points. Provide instruction in both written and oral forms. Pre-teach lessons and use peer tutoring. Provide class notes for students with writing difficulties or attention issues. Utilize picture cues and visual maps.
  17. 17. Charting Data For some students it may be helpful to have students monitor their progress over time using a graph To do this students would total their “points” received on their self monitoring system at the end of each period They would then chart their progress for that day before leaving
  18. 18. Resources Bowman-Perrott, L. J., Greenwood, C. R., & Tapia, Y. (2007). The Efficacy of CWPT Used in Secondary Alternative School Classrooms with Small Teacher/Pupil Ratios and Students with Emotional and Behavior Disorders, Education and Treatment of Children, 30 (3), 65-87. De I’Etoile, S. K. (2005). Teaching Music to Special Learners: Children with Disruptive Behavior Disorders. Music Educators Journal, 91 (5), 37-43. Gilles, D. L. & Smith, S. W. (2003). Using Key Instructional Elements to Systematically Promote Social Skill Generalization for Students with Challenging Behavior. Intervention in School and Clinic, 37 (1), 30-37. Groves, J. E. (2006). Art as a Behavior Modification Tool. Multicultural Education, 13 (4), 55-7. Haukaas, P. M. (2003). Tranquil Light. Retrieved from Hunter, A. D., & Johns, B. H. (2006). Students with Emotional and/or Behavior Disorders. In B. Gerber & D. Guay (Eds.), Reaching and Teaching Students with Special Needs through Art (pp.43-60). Reston, VA: National Art Education Association. Nash, D. (1998). Mango Light. Retrieved from Rizza, M. & Morrison, W. (2003). Uncovering Stereotypes and Identifying Characteristics of Gifted Students and Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities. Reoper Review, 25 (2), 73-77. Young, J. (2006). Water Lillies. Retrieved from
  19. 19. Our Goal Honorable Discharge

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