Welcome the participants to the session on co-teaching. Introduce yourself (or selves) as presenter(s), and briefly cite your experience working with students with disabilities. Explain that the session will last approximately 3 hours and will include a PowerPoint presentation and participant activities.
Part I. Agenda and Overview Approximate time: 10 minutes Show this agenda, and briefly cite the major content of the session.
Since most participants will likely not be familiar with The Access Center, take a couple of minutes to explain the center, its mission, etc. Only spend 1 or 2 minutes on Slides 3–5, which describe The Access Center. At the conclusion of The Access Center’s existence, these three slides can be deleted .
Explain technical assistance (TA), including the TA liaisons’ roles within the regional framework and the four tiers of intensity of TA offered by The Access Center.
Briefly mention each point on this slide.
Part II. Introduction to Co-Teaching Approximate time: 20 minutes If The Access Center’s description was given, then refocus participants on the topic of co-teaching by stating, “Now we will begin to explore the topic of today’s session — co-teaching.”
This slide can be presented as follows: This one is really self-explanatory, isn’t it? No one likes being told what to do. We can minimize any negative feelings or feelings of resistance by explaining the needs of kids with disabilities to general educators. The key is capitalizing on everyone’s knowledge about kids and how they learn.
Similar to the previous slide: We really love our students, which should be encouraged, as long as we allow others to love them too. Being too possessive of students is counterproductive to working collaboratively. Although we may know more about the students that we’ve worked with, that knowledge should be shared and communicated effectively.
Ask the participants for some of the preconceived notions of co-teaching that may not be an appropriate interpretation of this approach. Here, you may want to direct the participants’ attention to the co-teaching brief in their folders, which is a good resource for both more information about co-teaching and more references to articles and studies.
This has become the most widely accepted definition in the literature. Go over handout 1 (H1): “Co-Teaching, What it IS, what it is NOT.” This handout is shown on the next slide to help participants locate it in their packets. Allow 5 minutes to discuss this handout. Interestingly, co-teaching originated in the field of general education and has only recently been applied as a way to provide services to students with disabilities.
Emphasize the following points about H1: Although paraprofessionals/instructional aides are essential, it is not fair to expect them to be able to deliver instruction, particularly in content areas. Be sure that having two teachers in the same room is a value-add. One teacher should not always be in the supportive role, otherwise students will pick up on that and begin to treat that teacher differently. Both teachers’ areas of expertise should be included in the classroom. Be sure that the teachers are co-teaching, not just coexisting. It is important to understand and realize that small groups of students will still need to be taken aside or elsewhere for instruction. This is OK, as long as it is meeting the needs of the students, but it should not be the method of choice.
Use the notes below to present a brief overview of the three co-teaching models: In the consultant model , the special educator serves as a consultant to the general educator in areas pertaining to curriculum adaptation, skills remediation, and assessment modification. The coaching model involves the special and general educators taking turns coaching each other in areas of the curriculum and pedagogy in which they are the acknowledged experts. The collaborative (or teaming) model incorporates equitable sharing of lesson planning, implementation, and assessment. This model is increasingly becoming recommended as the preferred model by researchers, particularly because of its efficacy in valuing the contributions of both teachers through task and responsibility sharing.
Ask the participants to review H2: “Co-Teaching Models Between General and Special Education Teachers” This is a two-sided handout that the participants need to become familiar with for a discussion of Slides 14 –19 .
Make the following points about this slide : This approach is also known as “One Teaching, One Supporting” or “Lead and Support.” It is the most commonly used approach—why? Because it is the easiest approach to start with, since it does not need much time for co-planning. This is also a fall-back approach. However, careful attention should be paid to this approach, because if one teacher continues to take the lead, it can diminish the role and/or credibility of the other teacher.
Make the following points about this slide : Because both teachers need to be proficient in the content area, it is difficult to use this approach initially. The primary goal here is to limit the student – teacher ratio. This approach requires significant coordination between the teachers so that all students receive essentially the same instruction and that grouping decisions are based on maintaining diversity. Noise and movement levels should be monitored, and teachers will need to pace their instruction similarly.
Make the following points about this slide : Since each teacher has separate responsibilities for instruction, this approach can be used if the teachers have differing pedagogical approaches. Drawbacks to this approach can be the amount of movement and noise it can entail —it can be distracting. However, many classrooms make use of stations, or centers, so this can usually be integrated fairly seamlessly. Some noise may be minimized by using headphones or study carrels or by having the teachers move rather than the students.
Make the following points about this slide : One consideration here is that teachers should be mindful of the groupings. Groups should vary so that one group of particular students is not always pulled aside. A benefit of this approach is that it acknowledges the fact that there are times when small groups of students need instruction that is different from what the large group is participating in.
Make the following points for this slide: While one teacher explains or speaks, the other can demonstrate a concept or strategy, such as note-taking or summarizing. When this approach is used, co-teachers should engage in frequent checks for level of comfort and satisfaction because the approach can be intensive.
Go over H2: “Co-Teaching Models Between General and Special Educators” This handout outlines some ideas or tips that you can refer back to when you need to refresh your memory on each of the approaches. The tips are categorized into three major elements of classroom life: lesson design, instruction, and monitoring behavior. Benefits of each approach are also summarized. Optional Group Activity As a review, time permitting, the group can be divided into the areas of lesson design, instruction, and monitoring behavior, and within these small groups the three elements can be compared. When the full group re-assembles, discussion will compare the different models in regards to these areas. Allow 5 minutes for small group work, and 10 minutes for discussion.
Part III. Getting Started Approximate time: 15 minutes This section will explore the thoughts and action steps needed to implement co-teaching in your school or district.
Share the following: Teaching is a very isolated profession. We can shut our classroom doors and make it our own safe haven. To open your door is the first step, and an important one that should be recognized and valued. It takes some courage to be willing and open to the possibility of sharing your classroom with another professional. Also, ground rules must be in place. To feel safe walking out the door and onto the bridge, we have to know that the bridge is safe territory. It has to be clear that no one is going to try to shake us off or to force us to retreat, nor will we do that to anyone who joins us on the bridge. And if it doesn’t work out or if it’s just not comfortable, we can always go back to safe ground —n o harm done. But hopefully we can get both parties to the same side of the bridge and to work together.
Read points on slide and add any personal anecdotes related to change.
Share the following about the points on this slide: Collaborative teaching isn’t something that you can just start doing tomorrow. It should be a careful, thoughtful, gradual process that continues to grow over time. In some cases, we’ve heard of the process taking 2 years to get to a comfortable, collaborative relationship. What does this mean? Simply, don’t give up and don’t worry. It is going to take time, and no one does it perfectly.
Make the following points about this slide: We are really working in separate worlds—there is not much alignment or communication taking place. Why is this? It could be that we don’t want to step on each other’s toes—we’re not comfortable with what “they” do, etc. And, again, it is clear that collaborative teaching won’t just happen; we have to make it happen and find a reason around which to shape it. What better reason than to improve student outcomes. Does special education even have access to the general education curriculum? Oftentimes they do not even have the teacher’s edition or textbook for one grade level, let alone all of the grade levels that they may teach in a day.
Make the following points about this slide: If we start from different places, no wonder our paths are different as well. Rarely are we working with the same curriculum —more confusion .
Make the following points about this slide: One thing we have working in our favor is that teaching is a systematic profession. We are centered around plans for lessons, scopes, and sequences of curricula that are scheduled for each day. The structure, organization, and plans are there. We just have to bring them together. We all know what we have to get through in a year, so we know where we are starting and where we must get to. We generally know how we’re going to get there. This trajectory can help us keep the discussions objective (focused on what the kids need to learn) and data driven (where they’re performing and how we can increase their growth). Since many issues affect our classrooms and the individual children, it is important to consider related issues, while at the same time keeping these discussions focused and objective and away from too much discussion of any one child . (Although those discussions may be more interesting, they can also keep us from getting where we need to be when planning time is already precious.)
Share the following: So, now that you’ve become familiar with co-teaching and the different approaches, we’ll go over some tips and steps to make the process easier.
Point out these action steps, and discuss H3: “Preparing to Co-Teach.” The first page of H3 is presented on Slide 29. Allow 2 or 3 minutes to discuss H3.
Discuss the following points about H3: “Preparing to Co-Teach.” This handout covers questions that should be asked and answered before co-teaching is implemented. Or, if co-teaching is already implemented at your site, you can look at these to see if the questions have been addressed for your classroom or building. This handout can be particularly helpful for teachers to use when they are initiating co-teaching from within (bottom-up as opposed to being an administrative priority), or if they are in an environment that may not be very supportive in terms of the administration.
Mention the following points: Researchers agree that teachers must agree to co-teach voluntarily (when possible). Co-teaching should also be implemented slowly. It represents a major change to teachers, and steps should be explained clearly. Start slowly. At the building level, this may mean just one or two pairs of co-teachers at first. At the classroom level, this may mean that a special educator provides in-class support through circulating, assisting with students who are struggling, or suggesting modifications. Although this type of in-class support differs from co-teaching, it may provide a safe starting point. It should be short term, but can serve to demonstrate the value of another teacher’s assistance. Goals and support services need to reflect the new learning experiences that students will receive in general education classes. That is, to the greatest extent possible, these goals should reflect the skills that students will need to achieve success in the general education setting (e.g., organizational skills, test-taking strategies, social skills, self-monitoring). Offer opportunities for participants to make suggestions, voice concerns, etc.
Mention the following points: Teachers should consider which approach to co-teaching will be most appropriate for each lesson or unit they teach. These points are really just things to keep in mind. Deciding to co-teach does not mean that it has to be your only answer. The major point is that the whole process is flexible.
Mention the following points: Co-teaching has traditionally meant that both teachers remain in the room for the entire lesson. While this is obviously advantageous for students with disabilities, it has been difficult to maintain in schools. (If you think about the ratio of special educators to general educators in your school, you can see why). De facto assignment of the special educator to the role of an assistant can be minimized through the implementation of some strategies that we will discuss shortly.
Share the following: Working together can be very exciting. For as much as we may acquire high levels of knowledge and experience on our own, increasing the interaction with others within and across education creates opportunities for learning beyond these traditional boundaries and encourages learning as a system. Instead of “what can each of us do for OUR kids,” it becomes “what can we do together for ALL kids.”
Part IV. Effective Co-Planning Approximate time: 40 minutes Mention the following points: Adequate planning time is among the top concerns for co-teaching teams. This is an additional concern for special educators who work with more than one general educator. The need for planning time is a systemic barrier, requiring administrative action at the school and/or district level.
Share the following: As we talk about pre-planning and planning, I realize that it may cause some stress or anxiety in terms of how to fit it all in. However, although it may be some extra work at the beginning, if you do it, it WILL make your life easier down the road. Planning is essential. Planning should center on determining which instructional techniques are going to be the most effective in helping students meet content standards. The general educator can provide an overview of the content, curriculum, and standards to be addressed before the planning meeting. The special educator should provide an overview of any student IEP goals, objectives, and needed accommodations or modifications that have to be incorporated into the lessons. Planning sessions should focus on what is going to be taught (the content) and how it will be taught. Student-specific concerns should be saved for the end of the planning session. Several premade co-teaching plan books are commercially available and may be helpful to structure lessons. Include days when the special educator will take the lead in planning.
Make the following points about H4: “General Education Curriculum Snapshots.” This page is for the general educator to complete. This information will give the special educator an idea of how far the students have to come in one quarter’s time. It is also helpful for the general educator to break down the unit or quarter and plan for what part is going to be the most difficult each week. Given that accommodations or modifications may be a reality for some students, it is also helpful for the teachers to come to agreement on what minimum level of mastery for each topic is going to be required. You can start with the standard or unit and map it out. Think about what students must be able to do as a result of the unit or lesson. This can also be compared to taking the content standards and developing modified standards for students. When planning, sometimes it is also helpful to do what is called “backward mapping.” That is, complete the last week first and then figure out how to get there. Those of you who have taught U.S. History and have never gotten past the Vietnam War understand why this can be beneficial!
Make the following points about H5: “Individual Student Needs Summary.” This page allows the special educator to break down or summarize each of the students’ IEPs. We talked earlier about how well special educators know their students and tend to “own” them. This page allows them to share not only what the IEP says about each child’s needs, but it also has room for notes from the special educator (or psychologist or speech-language therapist) that share additional information or tips that he/she knows from working more intensively with the child. Even in my everyday practice I have found a tool like this to be helpful. A “one pager” on each of the kids I work with is very helpful. Also, general educators will react much more favorably to a packet of one pagers than they will to a 2-foot stack of IEPs to read through.
Share the following: Believe it or not, research has shown, and we have seen, that 10 minutes really will become all you need to co-plan a lesson.
Make the following points about this slide: When co-teaching, we really want to present ourselves as a unified front! As trust develops, everything gets easier — in terms of planning, instruction, and management.
Briefly mention each point on this slide.
Share that there are two stages for co-planning, and then say: We will discuss how to effectively get to know each other, and then how to begin the daunting task of carving out co-planning time.
Make the following points about this slide: Again, these things will pay off big time for you later. This isn’t about adding more things to your already full plates. Instead, it’s about learning from the lessons of others. I think that you will find that your workload does get easier, and throughout this presentation, we can also help you work through specific issues.
Refer to H6, “What Behaviors Are Critical for Success in Each Area?”, and explain the purpose and use of this tool: This is an example of a tool that co-teachers can use to determine the “non-negotiables” in their classroom. Writing them down before you come to a meeting about them allows the process to be more neutral and less about “you vs. me.” This puts the attention/focus of the meeting on what is on the paper rather than simply having an open discussion that can easily get off track. It is important to get these things out of the way before you begin co-teaching because you want to avoid disagreeing with or unintentionally undermining each other as much as possible. For example, one of you might expect your students to come to class with all of their materials/supplies, while the other doesn’t mind giving out pens or pencils. Or, one of you may allow students unlimited restroom or hall passes while the other prefers a limit on passes. Agreeing or compromising on these issues before co-teaching can make for a smoother path. Optional: At this point, ask for input from participants. Ask if there are any points that they would add for discussion, etc.
Refer to H7, “S.H.A.R.E.,” and explain the purpose and use of this tool: Here is another example of a tool that can help co-teaching teams come to terms with sharing a classroom space. As you can see from the instructions, this asks each co-teaching pairs to complete the questions individually and then share the answers with his/her partner. The partner then reads it independently, and codes each response with an A for “agree,” a B for “disagree,” or a C for “agree to disagree or compromise.” Completing these separately allows for more honesty and less pressure. This is another way of getting at similar outcomes — we’ll give you many new things for your “toolbox” and you can pick and choose what works best for you and your situation. Do the first question with participants — ask them to share their hopes for a co-teaching experience.
Make the following points about this slide: Semistructured preliminary discussion can facilitate this process. See H8: “Preliminary Discussion Questions” Discuss current classroom routines and rules (as mentioned before—what are the classroom non-negotiables?) Current classroom routines and rules might include having access to the bathroom, drinking fountain, and pencil sharpener; talking during class; using instructional materials; and patterns of parental contact
Briefly describe H8, “Preliminary Discussion Questions,” and make the following points: Here is another way to get to know each other. Pick and choose whichever method or form is most effective/comfortable for you and your partner. You may be wondering why I keep focusing on the little details, and I’ll tell you why I am doing so. This is to avoid situations like the following: When thinking about choosing a co-teaching partner, I think to myself, “Oh, I really like Tracy. We’ll have no problems co-teaching.” Then you get into the classroom and think “you let your kids do THAT,” which of course leads to problems, because now the kids are involved and it is more difficult to change things.
Make the following points about this slide: Consider a “pilot test” (e.g., a 2 – 4 week social studies unit on the Civil War). A pilot test works best if you choose a lesson that is interesting to both of you. If it works reasonably well, make a long-term commitment (e.g., 2 years). It may be necessary to plan together during the summer (i.e., prior to development days involving all staff). Compensation for this time sends a signal of support.
Briefly mention the points on this slide and then share: The materials at the following Web addresses are examples of structured teaching style inventories that will allow you and your co-teaching partner the opportunity to systematically evaluate and collaborate based on your differing styles.
Refer the participants to H9: “Teaching Style Inventory.” Tell them that this is an example of a simple, less formal teaching style inventory. If time permits (5 – 10 minutes), ask the participants to complete this form (prepare handouts in advance) and share their style preferences with the person to their right. Ask participants to include in their discussions whether, based on this inventory, they would anticipate any conflicts working as a co-teaching team.
Make the following points about this slide: “ Fitting it in” planning doesn’t work for a couple of reasons: We tend to not actually end up fitting it in anywhere because we are pressed for time or have more immediate concerns (kind of like me and going to the gym). Hallway conversations are never the most effective — they tend to end up going like this: One teacher sees another in the hallway and is reminded of something he/she needs to tell that teacher. “Oh, there’s Mrs. Smith, I’ve been meaning to talk to her about _______ (insert kid’s name).” Why is this not ideal? First, only one teacher is prepared for this conversation to happen. Secondly, there is limited time in the hallway. We often have only 5 minutes to get coffee, use the restroom, etc., let alone have a detailed and worthwhile conversation.
Make the following points about this slide: We want our planning meetings to be structured and purposeful. Some things to think about: Where do we want our students to be? What are the biggest bumps going to be along the way? How can we work together to make the road less bumpy?
Share with the participants that there are even books that contain premade, co-teaching lesson plans. Refer to H10 and H11 on Slides 53 and 54 for sample plans from a lesson book.
Please remember, this is just one example from a commercial co-teaching planning book. There are several on the market, or you may choose to develop one that is tailored to meet your specific planning needs.
Again, please remember, this is just one example from a commercial co-teaching planning book.
Part V. Scheduling Approximate time: 40 minutes Scheduling Co-Teaching
Introduce this section in the following way: So, now that we’re ready with our co-teaching partners, how can we work it into the day? We are going to talk about three different approaches to collaborative scheduling. Perhaps one of these, or a combination of parts of them, will meet your specific needs. Small group activity: Divide the group into three small groups, assigning each group to either Collaborative Scheduling A, B, or C. Ask each group to become familiar with their assigned scheduling format and report back to the large group. Allow 5 minutes for small group work and 10 – 15 minutes for reporting back and having a discussion with the large group. Show Slides 56 – 66 as the participants report back about each collaborative schedule. Be certain that the points in the facilitator’s notes on each of the slides (56 – 66) are emphasized if they are not mentioned by the participants.
This model ensures the availability of direct support from a special educator for critical parts of the instructional programs. It does require careful planning by the co-teaching teams, because the special educator might be on two teams.
Slide 58 is self-explanatory. Ask for any personal reflections of similar scheduling models.
Slide 58 is self-explanatory. Ask for any personal reflections of similar scheduling models.
The advantages and challenges of Collaborative Scheduling B are similar to Collaborative Scheduling A. While the special educator may still be on two different teams, he/she has the advantage in Collaborative Scheduling B of staying with the same teacher for an entire day, thus involving less disruption to his/her schedule and the students’ day.
On days when both teachers are in attendance for the full day, teachers can plan differentiated activities (led by both teachers) and team teaching strategies for the entire class period.
Emphasize the second and third points, and again, ask for personal reflections.
This slide needs no further discussion, beyond emphasizing each point.
The team of teachers identifies the essential opportunities for IEP instruction and support throughout the school day and week, and a schedule is established accordingly.
Ask the participants to discuss a “typical day” or “typical week” if this model was chosen.
Following the discussion of these three scheduling models, ask the participants if they have had experiences with other scheduling models that have been successful . . . or unsuccessful.
Part VI. Co-Teaching in Action Approximate time: 30 minutes Co-Teaching in Action
Point out the following: Teaching in the same room at the same time is often the most difficult part of co-teaching. However, the instruction component has also been frequently reported to be the most rewarding part of co-teaching, provided teachers follow some tips for success.
Read this vignette to participants. No comments are necessary.
Read this vignette to participants. No comments are necessary.
Elaborate on this slide as follows : Unobtrusive signals should cover such cues as when it is time to move on, when extra time is needed, when one teacher needs to leave the room for an emergency, or when the teachers need to briefly meet. Signals for students can be used to indicate transitions, gain attention, or make an announcement. One of the distinctive features of co-teaching is that two teachers allow for more flexibility and creativity during lessons. Study skills are frequently part of students’ IEP goals and can help all students find success. Use occasions of potential disagreement to model appropriate communication techniques (Murawski & Dieker, 2004). No one teacher should always be with a small group or circulating while the other is always providing large group instruction. To avoid stigmatization, circulate students and maintain heterogeneous groups within both large and small group instruction (Murawski, 2005).
Introduce the three stages of co-teaching relationships by sharing the following: Throughout the next section, we will be looking at the various areas of a co-taught classroom in terms of how the co-teachers work together and apply that to a continuum throughout three stages.
Refer to each area on this slide, and indicate that each will be mapped onto the continuum of stages.
First, let’s take a look at the progression of the physical arrangement in a co-taught classroom.
Special educator asks permission to use materials or brings them in. This leads to the feeling of being an outsider. The special educator feels like a visitor here. Often, it is the special educator who is coming into the general educator’s classroom.
Elaborate on this slide as follows: There are invisible walls that divide special education from general education. It can look more like a resource room inserted into a general classroom—not much integration happening.
Point out the negative effect on the special educator: Although there is more movement and more sharing of space and materials, the special educator may not yet feel comfortable taking the lead as an equal partner in the instructional delivery to all students.
Point out why it is beginning to look like one unified classroom. The important element here is that the students are working together and not seeing any differences—walls are disappearing for the students and the teachers. For the teachers, it becomes less intentional and more intuitive.
The doubles team analogy really sums up this stage: The two teachers work in unison to cover questions from all students.
Let’s begin to explore how teachers with different backgrounds become comfortable and competent with each other’s areas of expertise.
Ask the special educators in the audience if they’ve ever seen the general education curriculum. It’s important to keep point of view/perspective in mind. What may be obvious to one of us may not be familiar at all to the other. Here is where the pre-planning tools come in handy—where the general educator provides an overview of the curriculum and the special educator provides an overview of individual student needs. This may be a good time to refer back to the pre-planning tools (H4 – H9). Communicating about what the other doesn’t know can help the teachers get on the same page and gain confidence in the other’s areas of expertise.
Make the following points about this slide: In this stage, the teachers begin to relinquish control of some of “their” respective territories. The special educator begins to be confident enough to deliver instruction, and the general educator begins to be familiar enough with the modifications to be able to provide them on his/her own. Ask participants for anecdotes about their student teaching experiences (e.g., they didn’t take control of a whole lesson right away but gradually eased into things).
Elaborate on this slide as follows : Here, teachers are beginning to see the value that they bring to the other’s area. Here, teachers will also find that “special education” techniques will likely benefit more students than just those with IEPs.
This is an area in which the special educator really needs to serve as a mentor to the general educator, as they work together to develop a classroom that meets the needs of each student.
Explain the difficulty with this step: The Beginning Stage is pretty much status quo, or even a step backward. Because it’s an unfamiliar situation, teachers will often revert back to “this is what we have to do,” thus, strictly following the curriculum. The special educator may feel particularly inadequate with regard to the curriculum and thus, with his/her contribution to the classroom. This is a tough stage to get through.
Share the following: Although the general educator has had time to understand the special educator’s role, he/she may still not be at the point where he/she can break down the standards into things that every student must learn—may not be comfortable differentiating the curriculum based on needs.
Describe what happens in this stage in the following way. You may refer back to H4, “General Education Curriculum Snapshots,” for this slide. Both the general educator and special educator can identify the big ideas, the most difficult concepts, and the minimum level of mastery. Here, because the teachers have become familiar with each other’s area, both of them can look at the curriculum and know how to break it down based on student needs. Modifications become something not just for students with IEPs but also something that many students in the class can benefit from.
Is it really possible for the chalk to be shared equally?
Elaborate on this slide as follows: At this stage, the instruction is still clearly divided between the general educator and the special educator, with each teaching his/her “own” students. There is a clear division of the chain of command, with the general educator tending to take control of the instruction.
Elaborate on this slide as follows: Here, the special educator is beginning to provide whole group instruction in some isolated instances. He/she is still seen as the teacher of the students who aren’t “getting it.” This is, however, a step forward, because now there are most likely students without disabilities in the group who are receiving instruction from the special educator.
The special educator and general educator cover the “court” equally. Both of them have had a hand in planning the lesson, delivering the lesson, and assessing the lesson. One of the most important indicators of the successful transition into the collaborative stage is that the students do not differentiate between the teachers. They feel comfortable asking questions of either teacher.
Now, let’s take a look at what it takes for the special educator — and the students with disabilities — not to be perceived as “separate” in terms of behavior and the management of inappropriate behavior.
Elaborate on this slide as follows: Although the general educator is teaching, the special educator is “floating” around the classroom dealing with disruptive and inattentive behavior. This significantly undermines the special educator’s position as a classroom teacher.
Elaborate on this slide as follows: The general educator is beginning to relinquish control and work more collaboratively with the special educator in developing and implementing rules and routines. Individual behavior management plans for all students still tend to be resisted in favor of group approaches to management.
Elaborate on this slide as follows: Rules, routines, and expectations are mutually developed for the class as a whole and for individuals. Individual behavior management plans are in place for students with and without disabilities and are being monitored equally by both teachers.
Assessment in the co-taught classroom involves developing systems for evaluating individual students and adjusting standards and expectations for performance to meet individual needs, while maintaining course integrity.
Discuss the following points: Grading can become one of the trickiest issues for co-teaching teams and should address education proactively to the greatest extent possible. In particular, at the secondary level, grades can carry great importance, and general educators may be concerned about the implications of accommodations or modifications. A method for assessing progress and effort should be determined. A way for students with IEPs to have their goals assessed and how attaining those goals will be reflected in grading should also be determined. It is recommended that each teacher grade a few of the same papers individually to see how their grading styles correlate. They should then discuss the process and refine their grading standards to ensure reliability between grading styles.
Typically, there are two separate grading systems or one system is exclusively controlled by the general educator. At this point, the general educator is not likely to be involved in the monitoring of progress toward goals in IEPs for students with disabilities. That system would be maintained by the special educator.
Ask participants for examples of grading systems or assessment ideas that might be appropriate in a co-taught classroom that would effectively capture students’ progress, not just their knowledge of the content . It is not just the general educator “giving up” assessment of content knowledge — that remains critical. It is going beyond point-in-time assessment to growth measures.
Provide examples of what the collaborative stage looks like: Individualization of grading procedures for all students, specific progress monitoring, use of both objective and subjective standards for grading Both teachers consider ways to integrate the goals and objectives that are written into students’ IEPs. Assessment procedures are developed on an ongoing basis. Summarize by saying: We’ve found that being aware of these stages is very helpful for teachers. It makes it real that they’re not going to be doing it perfectly right from the get go. Some of the tools that we talked about earlier can help us progress through the stages more quickly.
Introduce H12, “Tracking Our Progress Through the Three Stages,” as follows: This is another tool that co-teachers can use to see how they are doing in terms of moving through the stages in each area. Co-teachers can identify (separately or together) the stage in which they are functioning and their strengths and areas of challenge for each element.
Introduce H13, “Co-Teaching in the Classroom,” as follows: This tool is a “tip sheet” of activities for the co-taught classroom. This is not an ideal or complete list, but it can help both teachers to be active participants in classroom activities.
Share the following: The cause of this reluctance has been the fact that the success of co-teaching depends heavily on the relationship between the teachers. In fact, co-teaching relationships are often compared to marriages. Evaluating co-teaching situations at least once per year ensures that co-teaching teams are functioning as intended.
Part VII. Co-Teaching Scenarios Approximate time: 40 minutes These scenarios can be presented in two ways: One way is to simply present each slide, emphasizing each point. A second way is to present it as an optional small group activity, by following these suggestions: Divide the group into three small groups. Give each group the assignment of familiarizing themselves with the scenario, including what worked and what didn’t, and have each group report back to the large group. If you choose to use this as a small group activity, print two copies of Slides 105–117, one for the elementary group and one for the middle school group. Remind the groups that they will need to differentiate between the elementary and middle school classrooms as they study and present each specific scenario. Allow 5 minutes for small group work and 5–10 minutes for reporting back.
If you choose to explore the case studies as a small group activity, then leave these directions on the screen for the participants to see while they are working. If you choose the small group activity, then consider consolidating Slides 105 – 117 as a handout for group 1 and Slides 118-122 as a handout for group 2.
This scenario should be treated as two separate ones: an elementary classroom and a middle school classroom. Share this information with the small groups that are discussing these two scenarios: Qualitative data was collected to evaluate the effectiveness of the co-teaching practices. Classroom observations ranged from one semester to 2 years. The co-teaching teams consisted of one general and one special educator. All teachers had teaching experience (except one seventh-grade teacher, who was a beginning teacher) and credentials in their fields. Fourth grade consisted of 25 students (5 with disabilities: LD, cognitively disabled, physical disability). Seventh grade consisted of 25 students (7 with disabilities: LD, hearing impaired). The observations were conducted during a hands on unit on ecosystems. The units were highly similar across both grades, except the depth and breadth of coverage was greater in the seventh-grade unit.
As you go through this slide, it is helpful to emphasize the positive components that point to an eventually successful co-teaching team.
Make the following point about this slide: Clearly, this team is “sharing the chalk,” and “covering the court equally.”
It is appropriate at this point, and engaging, to ask the participants for personal examples of the “trials and tribulations” and successes of co-planning time.
Be certain to emphasize the importance of the points on this slide as the small group is reporting back.
Be certain that the team reporting back includes the following: Both the elementary and middle school teams incorporated effective instructional strategies into their lessons. These strategies, such as hands-on and activity-based lessons, have become a hallmark of co-taught classrooms, incorporating the strengths and expertise of both teachers.
Be certain that the team reporting back makes the following point: It is important to note that both students with disabilities and students without disabilities benefited from this approach.
Be certain that the team reporting back makes this point: Both of these teams were able to effectively incorporate instructional presentation and behavior management into a model that worked well for all types of students.
Be certain that the team reporting back makes the following point: The addition of the special educator into the classroom enhanced the individualization of all instruction and helped to meet the specific needs of students with disabilities.
Be certain that the team reporting back emphasizes this point: It is important to keep in mind modifications and accommodations that are necessary for students with IEPs. In this case, the seventh-grade team adapted the amount of written language on tests that were taken by students with IEPs.
Be certain that the team reporting back emphasizes this point: Especially in the elementary classroom in these case studies, both teachers appeared to be comfortable as the person who was primarily responsible for instructional presentation.
Be certain that the team reporting back emphasizes this point: Content knowledge becomes a more difficult issue after elementary school. It is easy for the team in middle schools and high schools to slip back into a model of a primary teacher and an “assistant.”
Summarize this scenario as follows: The co-teaching team consisted of a general and special educator. The classroom was an eighth-grade government and civics class. Observations were conducted during an entire academic year. Both teachers had several years of teaching experience and credentials in respective areas. The co-teaching team was mandated by the school administration. The classroom consisted of 30 students (8 with disabilities).
Be certain that the team reporting back emphasizes these points: Parent conferences and IEP meetings, among others, were also scheduled during the common planning time. Efforts to divide the teaching responsibilities began congenially. However, when time tensions began to emerge, the general educator and special educator continued to maintain ownership of both their students and their areas of instructional specialty.
At this point, ask for personal experiences of co-planning “gone bad.” Try to turn the discussion into a positive one, by asking for possible solutions to the co-planning struggles.
Be certain that the team reporting back mentions the points on this slide. Ask the participants: What teaching styles might be more likely to conflict in this setting? How can these differences be addressed?
Be certain that the team reporting back briefly discusses the points on this slide. Ask the participants for personal experiences and/or insights into classroom management options that can be implemented in a co-teaching setting.
Visit The Access Center’s Web site
Co Teaching For Teachers 08 01 06
Improving Access to the General Curriculum for Students With Disabilities Through Collaborative Teaching Ellen Shepherd and Rose Harvey 8/25/09
Session Overview <ul><li>Introduction to national assistance centers and The Access Center </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction to co-teaching </li></ul><ul><li>Planning strategies </li></ul><ul><li>Scheduling examples </li></ul><ul><li>Stages of co-teaching applied to the classroom </li></ul><ul><li>Scenario examples </li></ul>
The Access Center <ul><li>National Technical Assistance Center </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Focus on issues of access </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What is “access”? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Active learning for students with disabilities of the content and skills that define the general education curriculum </li></ul></ul></ul>
The Access Center’s Mission <ul><li>To provide technical assistance that strengthens state and local capacity to help students with disabilities learn through general education curriculum </li></ul>
E/ K/ W/ L/ Q <ul><li>What do we want to know? </li></ul>
Improving Access for Students With Disabilities Through Collaborative Teaching
Background <ul><li>General educators are more receptive to change when they have background knowledge and a chance to participate in the decisions rather than being given a special education mandate to follow. </li></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
Background (cont.) <ul><li>Special educators have developed a tendency to “own” students on individualized education plans (IEPs), which decreases the “voice” and participation of classroom teachers in collaborative problem solving. </li></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
Aligning Practices Through Co-Teaching <ul><li>Co-teaching is becoming one of the fastest growing inclusive practices in school. </li></ul><ul><li>Despite this rapid increase in popularity, co-teaching remains one of the most commonly misunderstood practices in education. </li></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
Defining Co-Teaching <ul><li>Co-teaching occurs when two or more professionals jointly deliver substantive instruction to a diverse, or blended, group of students in a single physical space. </li></ul>Cook & Friend, 1995, p. 1
Three Major Models <ul><li>Consultant model </li></ul><ul><li>Coaching model </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative (or teaming) model </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Most Common Approaches <ul><li>One Teaching, One Drifting </li></ul><ul><li>Parallel Teaching </li></ul><ul><li>Station Teaching </li></ul><ul><li>Alternative Teaching </li></ul><ul><li>Team Teaching </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
<ul><li>One teacher plans and instructs, and one teacher provides adaptations and other support as needed </li></ul><ul><li>Requires very little joint planning </li></ul><ul><li>Should be used sparingly </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can result in one teacher, most often the general educator teacher, taking the lead role the majority of the time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can also be distracting to students, especially those who may become dependent on the drifting teacher </li></ul></ul>One Teaching, One Drifting Friend & Cook, 2003
Parallel Teaching <ul><li>Teachers share responsibility for planning and instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>Class is split into heterogeneous groups, and each teacher instructs half on the same material. </li></ul><ul><li>Content covered is the same, but methods of delivery may differ. </li></ul><ul><li>Both teachers need to be proficient in the content being taught. </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Station Teaching <ul><li>Teachers divide the responsibility of planning and instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>Students rotate on a predetermined schedule through stations. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers repeat instruction to each group that comes through; delivery may vary according to student needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Approach can be used even if teachers have very different pedagogical approaches. </li></ul><ul><li>Each teacher instructs every student. </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Alternative Teaching <ul><li>Teachers divide responsibilities for planning and instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>The majority of students remain in a large group setting, but some students work in a small group for preteaching, enrichment, reteaching, or other individualized instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>Approach allows for highly individualized instruction to be offered. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers should be careful that the same students are not always pulled aside. </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Team Teaching <ul><li>Teachers share responsibilities for planning and instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers work as a team to introduce new content, work on developing skills, clarify information, and facilitate learning and classroom management. </li></ul><ul><li>This requires the most mutual trust and respect between teachers and requires that they be able to mesh their teaching styles. </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Where to Begin: Building Bridges <ul><li>Walking across the bridge, leaving the familiar ground of working alone, is the first act of collaboration. All parties are in neutral territory, with the security of knowing they can return to land better, stronger, and changed. And perhaps they will return to the same side of the bridge even though they started from opposite sides. </li></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
What is Change? <ul><li>Change is always: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Risky </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scary </li></ul></ul><ul><li>But it can also be: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rewarding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fun </li></ul></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
Why Won’t it Just Happen? <ul><li>Some possibilities might be: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Little understanding of curriculum, instruction, and assessment between general and special educators </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaboration does not occur without a student-driven reason and a deliberate structure with resources. </li></ul></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
Why Won’t it Just Happen? (cont.) <ul><li>General educators begin with the curriculum first and use assessment to determine what was learned. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educators begin with assessment first and design instruction to repair gaps in learning. </li></ul><ul><li>No wonder we are talking different languages. </li></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
How Can We Work With This? <ul><li>Provide purpose and structure </li></ul><ul><li>Create baseline and a plan for scaffolded change </li></ul><ul><li>Provide a visual map to guide discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Keep discussions objective </li></ul><ul><li>Allow many issues to be put on the table for consideration </li></ul>Steele, Bell, & George, 2005
Sounds Good . . . Now What? Getting Co-Teaching Started at the Building and Classroom Levels
Action Steps <ul><li>Administrators should </li></ul><ul><li>Provide information and encourage proactive preparation from teachers </li></ul><ul><li>Assess level of collaboration currently in place </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-plan </li></ul><ul><li>Implement slowly . . . baby steps! </li></ul>Murawski, 2005
Considerations <ul><li>Teachers need to volunteer and agree to co-teach. </li></ul><ul><li>Co-teaching should be implemented gradually. </li></ul><ul><li>Attention needs to be given to individualized education plan (IEP) setting changes that an inclusive classroom may invoke. </li></ul><ul><li>Goals and support services need to reflect the new learning experiences that students will receive in general education classes. </li></ul>Murawski & Dieker, 2004
Not an All-or-Nothing Approach <ul><li>Teachers do not have to commit to only one approach of co-teaching. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers do not have to only co-teach. </li></ul><ul><li>Co-teaching is not the only option for serving students. </li></ul><ul><li>Some students with disabilities may be in a co-taught classroom for only part of the day. </li></ul>Murawski, 2005
Limitations and Potential Drawbacks <ul><li>Co-teaching is not easy to maintain in schools. </li></ul><ul><li>There may not be enough special educators for a co-teaching program. </li></ul><ul><li>Co-taught classrooms may be disproportionally filled with students with disabilities. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educators can function more as a teaching assistant than as a co-educator. </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Benefits of Collaboration <ul><li>Shared responsibility for educating all students </li></ul><ul><li>Shared understanding and use of common assessment data </li></ul><ul><li>Supporting ownership for programming and interventions </li></ul><ul><li>Creating common understanding </li></ul>Friend & Cook, 2003
Pre-Planning <ul><li>Co-teaching requires thoughtful planning time. </li></ul><ul><li>Administrative support is essential. </li></ul><ul><li>Here is where the alignment of special and general education occurs </li></ul><ul><li>Make this time as focused as possible </li></ul><ul><li>Take turns taking the lead in planning and facilitating </li></ul>Murawski & Dieker, 2004; Dieker, 2002
Provide Weekly Scheduling Co-Planning Time <ul><li>Co-teaching teams should have a minimum of one scheduling/planning period (45–60 minutes) per week. </li></ul><ul><li>Experienced teams should spend 10 minutes to plan each lesson. </li></ul>Dieker, 2001; Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Effective Classroom-Level Planning <ul><li>Co-teachers should show a shared commitment and enthusiasm. </li></ul><ul><li>Both teachers’ names should be posted on the door and in the classroom. </li></ul><ul><li>All meetings and correspondence with families should reflect participation from both co-teachers. </li></ul><ul><li>Skilled planners trust the professional skills of their partners. </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Effective Classroom-Level Planning (cont.) <ul><li>Effective planners design learning environments for their students and for themselves that demand active involvement. </li></ul><ul><li>Effective co-planners create learning and teaching environments in which each person’s contributions are valued. </li></ul><ul><li>Effective planners develop effective routines to facilitate their planning. </li></ul><ul><li>Planning skills improve over time. </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Two Stages of Classroom Co-Planning <ul><li>Getting to know each other </li></ul><ul><li>Weekly co-planning </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Getting to Know Each Other <ul><li>Ease into working with one another </li></ul><ul><li>Deal with the “little” things first </li></ul><ul><li>These typically become the deal-breakers down the road, and preventing these road blocks early can make life easier. </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Getting to Know Each Other (cont.) <ul><li>Important to spend time talking and getting better acquainted with each other’s skills, interests, and educational philosophies </li></ul><ul><li>Having a semistructured preliminary discussion can facilitate this process. </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss current classroom routines and rules </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Getting to Know Each Other (cont.) <ul><li>Consider a “pilot test” </li></ul><ul><li>It may be necessary to plan together during the summer (i.e., prior to development days involving all staff). </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Getting to Know Each Other (cont.) <ul><li>Consider completing a teaching style inventory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Compare how each of you prefers to structure assignments, lessons, classroom schedule, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Examples </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://fcrcweb.ftr.indstate.educationu/ tstyles3.html </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.longleaf.net/teachingstyle.html </li></ul></ul>
Weekly Co-Planning <ul><li>Effective weekly co-planning is based on regularly scheduled meetings, rather than “fitting it in.” </li></ul><ul><li>Important to stay focused </li></ul><ul><li>Review content in advance of meeting </li></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Weekly Co-Planning (cont.) <ul><li>Guide the session with the following fundamental issues: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What are the content goals? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Who are the learners? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How can we teach most effectively? </li></ul></ul>Walther-Thomas, Bryant, & Land, 1996
Collaborative Scheduling <ul><li>Collaborative Scheduling A </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative Scheduling B </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative Scheduling C </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Collaborative Scheduling A <ul><li>Special educator divides teaching time between two different classes in the same day. </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Advantages of Collaborative Scheduling A <ul><li>Enables students with disabilities to access a broader range of general education classrooms, including AP and honors </li></ul><ul><li>Ensures the availability of direct support from a special educator for critical parts of the instructional programs </li></ul><ul><li>Improved ratio of students with disabilities to students without disabilities </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Challenges of Collaborative Scheduling A <ul><li>Requires effective consulting skills on the part of the special educator </li></ul><ul><li>Larger danger that the special educator will not be seen as an equal partner to the general educator </li></ul><ul><li>Could possibly disrupt the class routine </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Collaborative Scheduling B <ul><li>The special educator divides time between two different classes. </li></ul><ul><li>The involvement of the special educator varies by days of the week, not within classes in the same day. </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Advantages of Collaborative Scheduling B <ul><li>Advantages are similar to Collaborative Scheduling A. </li></ul><ul><li>Co-teachers report an ability to implement a full range of co-teaching models because of the planned involvement of both teachers in complete classes on certain days of the week. </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Challenges of Collaborative Scheduling B <ul><li>Challenges are similar to Collaborative Scheduling A. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers need to be cognizant of the presence of two teachers on only certain days of the week. </li></ul><ul><li>Students with specific support and accommodation requirements have to be well aligned to the schedule. </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Challenges of Collaborative Scheduling B (cont.) <ul><li>Requires general educator to be able to implement IEP requirements in the absence of the special educator </li></ul><ul><li>Special educator burnout is an issue because of the greater demand of knowledge of the general education curriculum. </li></ul><ul><li>Requires supervisory judgment regarding which teachers can effectively plan and implement this model </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Collaborative Scheduling C <ul><li>The special educator serves as a resource to the interdisciplinary team. </li></ul><ul><li>His/her schedule is established weekly on the basis of instructional activities. </li></ul><ul><li>Requires the greatest amount of flexibility and planning by an interdisciplinary team of teachers </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Advantages of Collaborative Scheduling C <ul><li>Special educator is present when needed most for instructional support. </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional need dictates the cooperative teaching role, not the calendar or time of day. </li></ul><ul><li>Most responsive to students’ needs and schedules. </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Challenges of Collaborative Scheduling C <ul><li>Requires the highest degree of planning and buy-in by a team of teachers </li></ul>Walsh & Jones, 2004
Instruction <ul><li>Most difficult but also the most rewarding </li></ul><ul><li>There are things that can be done to maximize success and rewards: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Review the different approaches to co-teaching and think about how each might look in a classroom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Discuss each other’s learning style preferences to see how these can be incorporated into the lesson to assist students with varying styles </li></ul></ul>Murawski & Dieker, 2004
<ul><li>“ We get along very well. We are both flexible and have developed similar expectations for students and similar classroom management styles. We feed off each others’ comments and teaching styles. We switch which groups we work with so that we both get to perform a variety of roles with all our students. We work together; develop together; and bounce things off each other. Working as a team makes you feel good.” </li></ul>Salend, Gordon, & Lopez-Vona, 2002
<ul><li>“ I don’t think I’d like to work in this type of program again. She felt like a visitor in my classroom, and we never connected personally. We struggled because of differences in roles, teaching and communication styles, and philosophy. The students also were confused. They felt that I was the teacher and she was my aide. I felt like she was always watching me and judging me. We didn’t know how to do it and received little support from our principal.” </li></ul>Salend, Gordon, & Lopez-Vona, 2002
Instructional Tips <ul><li>Develop unobtrusive signals to communicate with each other </li></ul><ul><li>Create signals for students that are consistent and can be used by either teacher </li></ul><ul><li>Vary instructional practices </li></ul><ul><li>Clearly display an agenda for the class, which includes the standard(s) to be covered and any additional goals </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid disagreeing with or undermining each other in front of the students </li></ul><ul><li>Strive to demonstrate parity in instruction whenever possible by switching roles often </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid stigmatization of any one group of students </li></ul>Murawski & Dieker, 2004
Three Stages of Co-Teaching Relationships <ul><li>Beginning Stage </li></ul><ul><li>Compromising Stage </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative Stage </li></ul>Gately, 2005
Three Stages of Co-Teaching as They Apply to: <ul><li>Physical Arrangement </li></ul><ul><li>Familiarity With the Curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>Curriculum Goals and Modifications </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional Presentation </li></ul><ul><li>Classroom Management </li></ul><ul><li>Assessment </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Physical Arrangement: Beginning Stage <ul><li>Impression of separateness </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Students with disabilities vs. general education students </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Little ownership of materials or space by special educator </li></ul><ul><li>Delegated spaces which are rarely abandoned </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Physical Arrangement: Beginning Stage (cont.) <ul><li>Invisible walls </li></ul><ul><li>A classroom within a classroom </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Physical Arrangement: Compromising Stage <ul><li>More movement and shared space </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing of materials </li></ul><ul><li>Territoriality becomes less evident. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educator moves more freely around the classroom but rarely takes center stage. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Physical Arrangement: Collaboration Stage <ul><li>Seating arrangements are intentionally interspersed. </li></ul><ul><li>All students participate in cooperative grouping assignments. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers are more fluid in an unplanned and natural way. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Physical Arrangement: Collaboration Stage (cont.) <ul><li>Both teachers control space: Like an effective doubles team in tennis, the classroom is always “covered.” </li></ul><ul><li>Space is truly jointly owned. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Familiarity With the Curriculum: Beginning Stage <ul><li>Special educator may be unfamiliar with content or methodology used by the general educator. </li></ul><ul><li>General educator may have limited understanding of modifying the curriculum and making appropriate accommodations. </li></ul><ul><li>Unfamiliarity creates a lack of confidence in both teachers. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Familiarity With the Curriculum: Compromising Collaborative Stages <ul><li>Special educator acquires a knowledge of the scope and sequence and develops a solid understanding of the content of the curriculum. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educator gains confidence to make suggestions for modifications and accommodations. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Familiarity with the Curriculum: Compromising Collaborative Stages (cont.) <ul><li>General educator becomes more willing to modify the curriculum, and there is increased sharing in planning and teaching. </li></ul><ul><li>Both teachers appreciate the specific curriculum competencies that they bring to the content area. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Curriculum Goals and Modifications: Beginning Stage <ul><li>Programs are driven by textbooks and standards, and goals tend to be “test-driven.” </li></ul><ul><li>Modifications and accommodations are generally restricted to those identified in the IEP; little interaction regarding modifications to the curriculum. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educator’s role is seen as “helper.” </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Curriculum Goals and Modifications: Compromising Stage <ul><li>General educator may view modifications as “giving up” or “watering down” the curriculum. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Curriculum Goals and Modifications: Collaborative Stage <ul><li>Both teachers begin to differentiate concepts that all students must know from concepts that most students should know. </li></ul><ul><li>Modifications of content, activities, homework assignments, and tests become the norm for students who require them. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Instructional Presentation: Beginning Stage <ul><li>Teachers often present separate lessons. </li></ul><ul><li>One teacher is “boss”; one is “helper.” </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Instructional Presentation: Compromising Stage <ul><li>Both teachers direct some of the activities in the classroom. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educator offers mini-lessons or clarifies strategies that students may use. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Instructional Presentation: Collaborative Stage <ul><li>Both teachers participate in the presentation of the lesson, provide instruction, and structure the learning activities. </li></ul><ul><li>The “chalk” passes freely. </li></ul><ul><li>Students address questions and discuss concerns with both teachers. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Classroom Management: Beginning Stage <ul><li>Special educator tends to assume the role of “behavior manager.” </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Classroom Management: Compromising Stage <ul><li>More communication and mutual development of rules </li></ul><ul><li>Some discussion for individual behavior management plans </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Classroom Management: Collaborative Stage <ul><li>Both teachers are involved in developing a classroom management system that benefits all students. </li></ul><ul><li>Common to observe individual behavior plans, use of contracts, tangible rewards, and reinforcers </li></ul><ul><li>Development of community-building and relationship-building activities as a way to enhance classroom management </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Assessment <ul><li>With the current emphasis on high-stakes tests, co-teaching provides an effective way to strengthen the instruction–assessment link: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Discuss grading before it becomes an issue </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider a variety of assessment options </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer menus of assignments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Share the grading load and align grading styles </li></ul></ul>Murawski & Dieker, 2004
Assessment: Beginning Stage <ul><li>Two separate grading systems are often maintained separately by the two teachers. </li></ul><ul><li>One grading system may also be exclusively managed by the general educator. </li></ul><ul><li>Measures tend to be objective in nature and based only on a student’s knowledge of the content. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Assessment: Compromising Stage <ul><li>Two teachers begin to explore alternate assessment ideas. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers begin to discuss how to effectively capture students’ progress, not just their knowledge of the content. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Assessment: Collaborative Stage <ul><li>Both teachers appreciate the need for a variety of options when assessing students’ progress. </li></ul>Gately & Gately, 2001
Evaluation <ul><li>Researchers have been reluctant to measure outcomes of co-teaching. This provides a good opportunity for teachers to engage in their own action research. They should begin to collect data on their own to document outcomes. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Teachers and administrators should evaluate co-teaching situations at least once per year. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The rule that assessment informs instruction should also apply to co-teaching: As co-teachers continue to assess their situation, they must ensure that they are improving their instruction to best meet students’ needs in an inclusive classroom. </li></ul></ul>Murawski & Dieker, 2004; Friend & Cook, 2003
Activity Directions <ul><li>Each group will read and discuss their scenario. </li></ul><ul><li>Be prepared to report back to the group with a summary of the scenario, including: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Comments about pros and cons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Personal insight into why the example was a positive or negative experience for the co-teachers </li></ul></ul>
Upper Elementary and Middle School Earth Science
Working Relationships <ul><li>Elementary team volunteered; middle school team was assigned. </li></ul><ul><li>Both teams were upbeat and able to interject appropriately during the lesson and displayed mutual respect. </li></ul><ul><li>Both teams indicated a genuine trust and respect for their partners. </li></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Strengths as Motivators <ul><li>Both teachers on both teams claimed ownership for all of the students who were enrolled. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers emphasized importance of enthusiastic teaching while maintaining effective behavior management. </li></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Time Allocated for Co-Planning <ul><li>Elementary team did not have time allocated for co-planning: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Met before/after school and at lunch </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Because they enjoyed each other’s company, lack of scheduled co-planning time did not appear to be a barrier to effective instruction. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mentioned that it would have been easier if the administration had allowed them time for co-planning </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Time Allocated for Co-Planning (cont.) <ul><li>Seventh-grade team had a common free period for planning during which time they could: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Review where they were in the content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Determine what needed to be covered and by when </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop optimal ways to present information and complete activities </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Appropriate Curriculum <ul><li>Both teams used a hands-on, activity-based approach to instruction: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Made content more concrete </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lessened the language and literacy demands of tasks </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Appropriate Curriculum (cont.) <ul><li>Activity-based instruction lends itself very well to co-teaching: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Teachers can share more equitably in instruction. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In fact, teachers appear to be more likely to share instruction in a hands-on approach. </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Effective Instructional Skills <ul><li>Both teams used effective instructional skills: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Framework of daily review, presentation of new information, guided and independent practice activities, and formative review </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Effective classroom management, including good behavior as a prerequisite for participation in activities, such reinforcers as positive comments, and tangibles </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Disability-Specific Teaching Adaptations <ul><li>Both teams planned for individual student performance within the unit and how to handle individual differences: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduced language and literacy requirements </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Special educator worked with students who required adaptations. </li></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Disability-Specific Teaching Adaptations (cont.) <ul><li>Seventh-grade team used PowerPoint presentations for supplemental review. </li></ul><ul><li>Special educator adapted tests by reducing amount of written language in questions. </li></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Expertise in the Content Area <ul><li>In fourth grade, both teachers deferred to each other during instruction so all students would benefit: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Teachers frequently exchanged roles as presenters. </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Expertise in the Content Area (cont.) <ul><li>In seventh grade, the division between the content and the adaptation experts was more pronounced: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>General educator appeared to have an advantage over the special educator with respect to content knowledge. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Special educator viewed this as an advantage (i.e., giving him/her an opportunity to learn the curriculum). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>During lessons, special educator more frequently assumed the role of assisting individuals and small groups than the general educator. </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Co-Planning <ul><li>Both teachers had allocated planning time; however, this was also their individual planning time. </li></ul><ul><li>One period per week was allocated for co-planning. Planned for: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Curriculum issues (in general), scheduling for curriculum sequence, and types of assignments and activities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ways to divide the teaching responsibilities </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Co-Planning (cont.) <ul><li>Lack of planning was an obstacle to co-teaching </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Resulted in lessons that were too advanced for all students </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Left one of the team members feeling trapped in an unworkable situation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>As tensions mounted, teachers began to split the class into two small groups and moved them into separate rooms for many of the activities. </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Teaching Styles <ul><li>Each teacher had a distinct style of instruction: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>One teacher was very relaxed and casual; the other was more structured and formal. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In the beginning, these styles seemed to complement each other. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Students appeared to adapt to the differences in styles and expectations. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>As the year progressed, the extreme styles contributed to the deterioration of the team. </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
Behavior and Classroom Management <ul><li>Little structure was in place in the beginning. </li></ul><ul><li>No specific class behavior rules were posted. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers implied that schoolwide behavior policies were the expectations for the class. </li></ul><ul><li>The loosely structured classroom behavior structure suited one teacher but not the other. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This was a contributing factor to the eroding of the team—the final straw. </li></ul></ul>Mastropieri et al., 2005
References <ul><li>Austin, V. L. (2001). Teachers’ beliefs about co-teaching. Remedial and Special Education, 22, 245–255. </li></ul><ul><li>Cook, L. H., & Friend, M. (1995). Co-teaching guidelines for creating effective practices. Focus on Exceptional Children, 28 (2), 1–12. </li></ul><ul><li>Cook, L. H., & Friend, M. (2003). Interactions: Collaboration skills for school professionals (4th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon. </li></ul><ul><li>Dieker, L. (2001). What are the characteristics of “effective” middle and high school co-taught teams? Preventing School Failure, 46, 14–25. </li></ul><ul><li>Dieker, L. (2002). Co-planner (semester) . Whitefish Bay, WI: Knowledge by Design. </li></ul><ul><li>Fennick, E. (2001). Co-teaching: An inclusive curriculum for transition. Teaching Exceptional Children, 33 (6), 60–66. </li></ul><ul><li>Friend, M., & Cook, L. H. (2003). Interactions: Collaboration skills for school professionals (4th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon. </li></ul><ul><li>Gately, S. E. (2005). Two are better than one. Principal Leadership, 5 (9), 36–41. </li></ul><ul><li>Gately, S. E., & Gately, F. J. (2001). Understanding co-teaching components. Teaching Exceptional Children, 33 (4), 40–47. </li></ul><ul><li>Geen, A. G. (1985). Team teaching in the secondary schools of England and Wales. Educational Review, 37, 29–38. </li></ul><ul><li>Hourcade, J. J., & Bauwens, J. (2001). Cooperative teaching: The renewal of teachers. Clearinghouse, 74, 242–247. </li></ul>
References (cont.) <ul><li>Mastropieri, M. A., Scruggs, T. E., Graetz, J. E., Nordland, J., Gardizi, W., & McDuffie, K. (2005). Case studies in co-teaching in the content areas: Successes, failures, and challenges. Intervention in School and Clinic, 40, 260–270. </li></ul><ul><li>Murawski, W. W. (2005). Addressing diverse needs through co-teaching: Take baby steps! Kappa Delta Pi Record, 41 (2), 77–82. </li></ul><ul><li>Murawski, W. W., & Dieker, L. A. (2004). Tips and strategies for co-teaching at the secondary level. Teaching Exceptional Children, 36 (5), 52–58. </li></ul><ul><li>Salend, S., Gordon, I., & Lopez-Vona, K. (2002). Evaluating cooperative teams. Intervention in School and Clinic, 37 (4), 195–200. </li></ul><ul><li>Steele, N., Bell, D., & George, N. (2005, April). Risky business: The art and science of true collaboration. Paper presented at the Council for Exceptional Children’s Annual Conference, Baltimore, MD. </li></ul><ul><li>Trump, J. L. (1966). Secondary education tomorrow: Four imperatives for improvement. NASSP Bulletin, 50 (309), 87–95. </li></ul><ul><li>Walsh, J. M., & Jones, B. (2004). New models of cooperative teaching. Teaching Exceptional Children, 36 (5), 14–20. </li></ul><ul><li>Walther-Thomas, C., Bryant, M., & Land, S. (1996). Planning for effective co-teaching: The key to successful inclusion. Remedial and Special Education, 17, 255–265. </li></ul>
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