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SCHOOLS &
SOCIALIZATION
CHLD 90.1 Class Project By:
Nathaniel Rowland
and Linda Price
November 2014
I. SCHOOLS & SOCIALIZATION
Project Overview by Linda Price
• Review: What is Socialization?
– Socialization is the process...
Bronfrenbrenner details the Agents of Socialization in his Ecological Systems
Theory.
These move from
Micro-System to
Macr...
Bronfrenbrenner’s Agents of Socialization include:
• FAMILY- Major source of influence on infant and young child, forming
...
But Why???
What is the
PURPOSE
of schooling?
Schools are part of the
Micro-System that
influence a child’s
socialization p...
“The purpose of schooling is the transmission of
culture,
the process by which the culture of a society
is passed on to it...
“The school system in the U.S. was originally a stabilizer responding
to the needs for trained workers in a society that w...
Today, Public Schools are still responsible for socializing
groups of children on specific skills and values in our
societ...
Are public schools functioning well as socializing agents?
Do schools need to be reformed or re-envisioned?
Are schools so...
Alternative Schools may offer different types of Socialization methods, strategies and
experiences for young children.
– R...
Reggio:
Values child’s impulses and freedom.
Emphasis on child’s curiosity and
imaginings.
Usually tuition based.
Montesso...
Images from Reggio Schools
Images from Montessori Schools
Images from Waldorf Schools
Images from Homeschools
Images from Public Schools
Images from Special Ed Classes
What did you feel?
Did you have a feeling response to any of these images of children in
their schools?
Which pictures fel...
Learning In Schools:
It is important that there is time for both curriculum instruction and time for leisure and imaginati...
Good Teachers probably use some of the following socialization methods
through Formal and Informal Learning in the classro...
Linda’s Personal Narrative
I remember being very nervous, shy and uncertain of my surroundings. I
was only 6 years old and...
Schools & Socialization:
CONCLUSION
A. Schools have a deep influence on the Socialization of children through transmission...
Schools & Socialization:
SOURCES
SOURCES & REFERENCES USED BY LINDA PRICE:
• Gonzalea-Mena, Janet. Child, Family, and Comm...
II. THE ROLE OF THE TEACHER IN SOCIALIZATION
Interviews conducted by Linda Price and Nathaniel Rowland
This Section of our project will be addressed and
reflected upon through several interviews of local
teachers and educator...
Interview with Lacey Barragan
(Former Preschool Teacher at
Woodside West Preschool & Childcare in Santa Rosa)
1: I would h...
Interview with Angela Kindle
(Grades teacher at Sunridge Waldorf School in Sebastopol; Currently in
1st Grade)
1)To social...
Interview with Autumn Rose Deason
(Grades Teacher at Sebastopol Independent Waldorf Charter School;
Currently in 3rd Grade...
Interview with Rachel Rich
(Special Education Preschool Teacher with S.C.O.E.)
1.) A lot of modeling and visual supports. ...
III. Socialization Effects of
Different Types of Schools
By Nathaniel Rowland
Special Education Inclusion
in our Schools
Inclusion is an effort to make sure students with
disabilities go to school alo...
Three Principles for
Inclusive Practice
Principle One
• Principle One: Inclusion is about Community.
• Inclusion is more than a Placement or a Service.
• It is ab...
Principle Two
• Principle Two: Inclusion is a Dynamic Process.
• It takes place within a living classroom community that
c...
Principle Three
• Principle Three: Inclusion is about Social Transformation.
• Small changes can make a big difference ove...
Including Everyone
• What is the definition of “a child with special needs”?
• A child with special needs is one who requi...
Including Everyone
• In the past, children with special needs often ended up
in special education programs rather than in ...
Including Everyone: Steps Taken
• 1992, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA):
Mandate to provide people who have disabili...
Bringing Inclusion to the Classroom:
Classroom components and
Teacher Competencies
• Six classroom components
• Focuses on...
Six Teacher Competencies
• One: The capacity to nurture and embrace each child as a unique individual
who brings a special...
Independent Schools and Inclusion
• Until recently, most independent schools weren't set up to offer students with
special...
Nathaniel’s Personal Narrative
My first experience in school was when I was three years old. I had
never attended a school...
Sources
• National Institute for Urban School Improvement (nd).
Improving education: The promise of inclusive schooling
• ...
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Schools & Socialization (By Linda Price & Nathaniel Rowland)

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Agents of Socialization: SCHOOLS
Group Project for Chld 90.1
Fall 2014
Linda Price & Nathaniel Rowland

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Schools & Socialization (By Linda Price & Nathaniel Rowland)

  1. 1. SCHOOLS & SOCIALIZATION CHLD 90.1 Class Project By: Nathaniel Rowland and Linda Price November 2014
  2. 2. I. SCHOOLS & SOCIALIZATION Project Overview by Linda Price • Review: What is Socialization? – Socialization is the process by which individuals learn the skills and knowledge to be effective members of a particular group or society. – Socialization is all the lessons taught every day, all day long, through a child’s environment. (P. Mooseman, Class Website.)
  3. 3. Bronfrenbrenner details the Agents of Socialization in his Ecological Systems Theory. These move from Micro-System to Macro-System. That which is closest to the child (immediate family) and That which is a bit farther removed (community). NOTE: Schools are an integral and important influence on children as a part of their Micro-System of socialization.
  4. 4. Bronfrenbrenner’s Agents of Socialization include: • FAMILY- Major source of influence on infant and young child, forming the child’s sense of security, that basic needs are met, attachment & bonding, and setting the path for the child’s self-esteem and self- actualization (Maslow). • PEERS- Relating to a peer group can have dramatic impact on a child’s self-esteem and feeling of acceptance. • RELIGION- Shapes a child’s socialization through repeated traditions, rituals and moral values. • SCHOOLS- Children not only learn curriculum, but also a deeply penetrating rhythm and structure of acceptable behaviors, boundaries and play and interaction with peers and adults.
  5. 5. But Why??? What is the PURPOSE of schooling? Schools are part of the Micro-System that influence a child’s socialization process.
  6. 6. “The purpose of schooling is the transmission of culture, the process by which the culture of a society is passed on to its children.” (Saldana)
  7. 7. “The school system in the U.S. was originally a stabilizer responding to the needs for trained workers in a society that was no longer homogenously Christian.” (Saldana) - The school system has always had the task of organizing and rewarding group conformity among children. - Schools have served to impose rules and regulations to ensure order and efficiency. - Schools originated with an emphasis on creating good democratic citizens/ responsible citizenship. How Did Public Schools originate? And how did they become the modern schools we see today?
  8. 8. Today, Public Schools are still responsible for socializing groups of children on specific skills and values in our society. – Schooling can teach children to work independently, or cooperatively together and even within a large group. – Schooling can teach life-skills like conflict resolution, drug awareness, hygiene, sex education, literacy, communication skills and appropriate pro-social behaviors. – Schooling can impact a child’s connection and support network through positive peer group relations. – Schooling teaches appropriate curriculum in standardized subjects determined by school districts and/or government education departments. – Positive experiences in school can impact a child’s path to self-esteem and self-actualization (Maslow). – Academic achievement in school is widely recognized as the platform to further education and future career or financial successes.
  9. 9. Are public schools functioning well as socializing agents? Do schools need to be reformed or re-envisioned? Are schools socializing and educating our children properly? There is a disconnection between the American idealization and admiration of Individuality and the conformity and uniformity required in our current system of public schools. – Mass groups of students are homogenized and often their cultures are denied or even disrespected. – Curriculum is standardized and standardized testing often has cultural or socio-economic biases. – Many public grade-school lessons place an emphasis on academic, rigid “desk-learning” particularly to prepare students for “Benchmark Exams” and STAR Tests/ Government Tests. – Are we serving all students by expecting them to all be the same? – What happens to language learners, cultural minorities and special needs students who don’t always meet the social norms expectations? As teachers these are questions that are important to ponder and think about and reflect upon continuously in our careers. • This is why, as teachers with such an incredible influence on the socialization of children, we must strive to overcome biases, promote equality and be aware of sensitive issues that relate to, not only the immediate children we teach, but the honor and integrity of their families and cultures as well. • It is no small task to be a good teacher.
  10. 10. Alternative Schools may offer different types of Socialization methods, strategies and experiences for young children. – Reggio Schools: Based on the platform that children are full of curiosity and creativity, rather than empty vessels waiting to be filled. Reggio curriculum is flexible and emerges from the children’s ideas, thoughts, observations and interests. Less emphasis on organized structure and more emphasis on child’s freedom of choice. – Montessori Schools: Views the children as eager for knowledge and capable of initiating learning in a supportive, thoughtfully prepared environment. Special emphasis is placed on peer-group learning, practical work and freedom of choice, as well as in early childhood, sensory-motor activities with very specifically selected manipulatives. – Waldorf Schools: Strives to educate the whole child- head, heart and hands. Emphasis on arts as an interdisciplinary tie that weaves through most lessons. No textbooks, children create their own textbooks with each lesson through artwork. Based on a spiritual understanding of human development and what nourishes the growing children and is developmentally appropriate in each year of their life. – Special Education: For students with special needs this type of schooling addresses their individual differences. Interventions and strategies are designed and tailored to specific needs of the individuals to help him/her achieve a higher degree of self-sufficiency and success in their school and community. Is vastly more specialized/individualized than they would receive in typical classroom education and usually has a higher ration of adults::students. – Homeschooling: Some families choose to educate their children at home. The methods and reasons why are always varied. There is a stereotype that Homeschooled children have a harder time relating to their peer groups later on and that perhaps it is not a beneficial beginning for early childhood socialization. Maybe, Maybe Not. What do you think?
  11. 11. Reggio: Values child’s impulses and freedom. Emphasis on child’s curiosity and imaginings. Usually tuition based. Montessori: Values practical work and the influence of the child’s environment. Emphasis on developing strong peer group interactions and learning from peers. Usually tuition based. Waldorf: Values the child’s Whole Being: head, heart and hands. Has a “spiritual” influence. Educates based on developmental stages. Emphasis on the arts as a way in to all curriculum. Usually tuition based. Special Education: Values the needs of students with differences. Values Inclusion. Emphasizes individual attention and tracks progress closely. Public School: Values Conformity Emphasis on creating responsible democratic citizens. Emphasis on Desk Learning. Usually Free and accessible. Homeschool: Values ? Emphasizes? Requires parent to file paperwork with the state/county. Depending on school choice (and these are just a few examples) students in these different educational settings will have varying platforms upon which they develop their socialization. The point here is not to determine a right or a wrong, just to acknowledge how the school environment and underpinning pedagogical lens has a direct affect on the child’s socialization.
  12. 12. Images from Reggio Schools
  13. 13. Images from Montessori Schools
  14. 14. Images from Waldorf Schools
  15. 15. Images from Homeschools
  16. 16. Images from Public Schools
  17. 17. Images from Special Ed Classes
  18. 18. What did you feel? Did you have a feeling response to any of these images of children in their schools? Which pictures felt similar to your school experience? What do you notice are the similarities or differences between the different school settings? Where do you see methods of socialization occurring in the photos? What do you notice about the teachers? Just questions to ponder, no right/wrong answers!!! Of course, these photos are just a glimpse at what occurs in Schools But consider these thoughts:
  19. 19. Learning In Schools: It is important that there is time for both curriculum instruction and time for leisure and imagination. Young children LEARN the most through PLAY! • Formal Learning: Classroom based, provided by trained teachers, emphasis on clear learning goals and planned delivery of lesson. Learning goals are controlled. • Importance of the Teacher. a. Authority figure that is not a parent. Is fair and kind, and worthy of children’s mimicry. b. Models desired behavior such as compassion, generosity, problem solving, respectfulness. c. Facilitates group interactions and helps children build relationships within the group. d. Creates rhythm and structure that provides a sense of security for students. (More on the role of the teacher in the next section.) • Informal Learning: Learner sets the goals or objectives. Often leads to Formal instruction if the learning episode is too narrow or superficial. Not always classroom based. (from Knowledgejump.com) • Informal learning might be more creative or nonlinear. • Informal learning can occur between peers. • Informal learning can occur during play. • Informal learning can occur through independent study/research/reading. This develops an individuals intrinsic motivation. (Gonzalea-Mena). Through FORMAL Learning: Through INFORMAL Learning: All of these methods and aspects of education are also part of the socialization process. The TEACHER plays a very important role in early childhood socialization.
  20. 20. Good Teachers probably use some of the following socialization methods through Formal and Informal Learning in the classroom. • Attachment: When students feel bonded with their teacher, they are more comfortable, secure and able and to follow directions or follow along with the lesson. This requires a teacher who is warm, kind, patient and fair. • Reinforcement: Sometimes children are rewarded for good behavior. An example we see in schools might be Star charts where students have stickers placed by their name for completing a chore. • Extinction: When a teacher ignores a negative or unwanted behavior in the classroom, it is a strategy to eliminate that behavior. Example: When a student blurts out the answer the a question, the teacher ignores the outburst and calmly acknowledges a student who raised their hand properly to answer the question. • Punishment: Undesired consequences for unpleasant behavior. Example: In the late 1800’s it was acceptable for teachers to spank, whip or hit students who were rude, defiant or uncooperative. Today we might send students “to the principal” to punish them. • Feedback: Evaluation of one’s behavior. I used this tactic frequently in High School classrooms. Simply pulling a student aside and asking them to reflect or communicate with you in a calm, objective manner about their behavior often times leads them towards insight. • Learning By Doing: Experiencing and Interacting. This happens often during free play, recess or peer oriented lessons. There is a famous quote that comes to mind: “Tell me and I’ll forget. Show me and I might remember. Involve me and I’ll understand.” There is power in DOING. • Modeling: This is key and essential for teachers, especially in the early years. You have direct impact on how a student develops and unfolds through your gestures, your speech, your word choices, your mannerisms, your energy and your reactions. Young students are geared to imitate. Be worthy of their imitation. • Group Pressure: Conforming to a group is a huge part of the socialization process in schools and a high degree on conformity is expected from students their entire educational career.
  21. 21. Linda’s Personal Narrative I remember being very nervous, shy and uncertain of my surroundings. I was only 6 years old and I was in a library, taking tests for grade placement. I was taken away from my parents and sat at a table with an old lady I didn’t know and had to spell certain words she was dictating to me. When she said “Joy” I quietly spelled out “J-O- Y.” When she said “Bike” I spelled back to her “B-I-K-E.” But when she said “Boy” I was silent. I remember feeling embarrassed an unsure of myself. And the more she pushed, the less I had the ability to speak, think or spell. Miraculously, after this test, I was placed in 2nd Grade (public school), where most of my peers were a full year older than me. I’m still not sure how that happened. The reason I shared this snapshot is because I think it was a pivotal moment in my early childhood education. After this moment, I was always a year younger than the other students in my grade. I always felt like I wasn’t a part of my peer group. I did fine with the creative and literary side of my education but had tremendously difficult time connecting to my peer group and struggled with math and numbers. This moment stayed with me for the rest of my life. I’m not sure what criteria they used to judge my readiness for 2nd grade, rather than 1st grade (which upon reflection I feel like I should have gone into instead). I sometimes wonder if my social interactions and ability to meet more challenging curriculum could have been eased by my grade level placement. Because of this, I am very aware of students age/development and try to consider the developmental stage they are in, in regards to their learning. I have a deep intrigue into age-appropriateness within education. I absolutely do not want my children pushed too ahead of their abilities too quickly. I see a great value in moving into academics in a slower, more child-centric manner, protecting childhood and making room for play-based learning. It is a great detriment to children to push academics too fast and too soon. I still wonder how I would be different today if I had been placed with my age group instead of pushed ahead. My Sister & I at School in 1986
  22. 22. Schools & Socialization: CONCLUSION A. Schools have a deep influence on the Socialization of children through transmission of culture, behavior expectations, group cooperation, the teacher’s authority and mannerisms, and curricular instruction. B. Public schools originally developed to promote conformity, and to create disciplined, law-abiding, democratic citizens. C. Modern public schools continue to hold conformity as an ideal through standardized testing, large student :: teacher ratio and (in grade school) emphasis on desk learning. C. Formal and Informal Learning can both contribute to a student’s cognitive development, socialization and academic success. D. Alternative types of schools offer a different foundation in a child’s early socialization. Research these pedagogies/methods further to determine which feel right for you and your family. E. The Teacher plays a big role in a child’s early socialization. It is no small task to be a good teacher.
  23. 23. Schools & Socialization: SOURCES SOURCES & REFERENCES USED BY LINDA PRICE: • Gonzalea-Mena, Janet. Child, Family, and Community, 6th Edition. • KnowledgeJump.com. “Informal and Formal Learning.” May 2007. • Mooseman, Paul. Child 90.1 Class Website Assignment Pages. Fall 2014. • Saldana, Justin. Power and Conformity in Today’s Schools. International Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences. Vol 3. No.1; January 2013 • Tasmajian, Danielle. “Socialization Skills Acquired by Elementary School Children.” http://www.kon.org/urc/tasmajian.html. 2002.
  24. 24. II. THE ROLE OF THE TEACHER IN SOCIALIZATION Interviews conducted by Linda Price and Nathaniel Rowland
  25. 25. This Section of our project will be addressed and reflected upon through several interviews of local teachers and educators in Sonoma County. It felt right to get our information directly from the source- the teachers who are involved in this work and the socialization process of young people every day! The Questions we asked: Question 1: What types of activities or methods do you use to support positive socialization for your students? Question 2: What is the teacher’s role in early childhood socialization? Question 3: What is the best thing about being a Teacher?
  26. 26. Interview with Lacey Barragan (Former Preschool Teacher at Woodside West Preschool & Childcare in Santa Rosa) 1: I would have a morning circle time and we would play games that involved socialization from playing games that includes each child to put in an idea on something that involved our theme, or sharing day, felt board which all the children worked together, I had each child take turns with weekly duties, calendar. 2: To support children in socialization, I would “guide a child down the path that encourages to use their words with each other whether it be agreeing or disagreeing.” 3:The most rewarding part was seeing my children really get it. A couple months after a child would enter my class everything would click and they were respectful to me and others, understood the routine and became proud to follow through with their class on lining up, circle time, etc. when they would start learning things that were taught throughout the year that was rewarding too, but just seeing them work with a group as a three year old/even the two year olds, and how they become a unit together- something about that was amazing.
  27. 27. Interview with Angela Kindle (Grades teacher at Sunridge Waldorf School in Sebastopol; Currently in 1st Grade) 1)To socialize children positively I have friendship circles weekly where we celebrate each other and investigate social concerns. We also role play a lot. As an adult teaching them, I model manners and teach conflict resolution through the lens of our social flaws in a moment being learning mistakes. I also work one on one with children working on facial cues and help children integrate with my guidance in social situations if they have sensory needs (especially in the play yard). This might look like sitting near a sandbox and helping the child play with another with gentle reminders to keep hands soft and kind. Often, with young children modeling, inviting, being explicit in expectations, and guiding rather than saying what they did wrong creates a very creative, flexible, and kind community that is built on positive energy. 2) The role of the teacher in early education in socialization is two fold. One, is to work with the children. We need to model and guide young children into positive, inclusive play. We also need to know the students and know triggers, needs, and strengths to determine how to approach a child and bring out their gifts in social situations. Often, I group children in flexible groups that work together well to create successful play in class and assign weekly buddies to promote children to expand social spheres. The teacher holds the thermometer to her class's social weather and must move, shift, guide, and help children work with one another through the day. The second thing teachers need to do is to educate and communicate with parents. More and more parents are seeking help and guidance. Having reading resources and parent evenings help gather parental support and create understanding of how to continue to promote common language, common methods, and common approaches to help children navigate through socialization. 3) The best thing about being a teacher is the children that come into your life. Filled with imagination and joy, I am inspired daily on how they see the world and how curious they are. While there are always events that can dampen a moment throughout the day, there are so many more shining moments that make you laugh, smile, and appreciate their ideas.
  28. 28. Interview with Autumn Rose Deason (Grades Teacher at Sebastopol Independent Waldorf Charter School; Currently in 3rd Grade) 1). Many methods of teaching, along with a variety of activities, can enhance young children's positive socialization in an educational or home setting. Playing whole group games that focus on cooperation, rather than competition, engenders a sense of oneness that already exists within the young child. For example, instead of racing, young children can act as boats and challenge themselves to carry each other over "dangerous waters to reach safe harbors" or work as a team to rake up huge piles of leaves in which to take turns jumping. Teaching through telling stories/poems in a large circle is also effective in developing a sense of belonging and purpose. In my class, I elicit and use student suggestions for gestures to accompany our songs/poems/word work. When we practice each day, there is a sense of both individual and group ownership of our presentations. 2.)Teachers, acting as the natural and needed authority within a group of children, serve as a moral compass for children. Modeling equanimity is of special importance as the children's emotions, actions, and words swirl around him/her. A teacher sends a powerful message of nurturing and safety when she affixes herself as the center of a wheel that the children can flow smoothly around, as opposed to running around and putting out the flames of conflict. Of equal importance is the teacher's role as a giver of unconditional love. Each day, the teacher can begin again with the knowledge that her reception of and reflection back of each child's innate desire to do good, will help to build a foundation of confidence in him/her. Also of note, is the teacher's role as a mirror, rather than a cheerleader. Children need specific feedback or questions such as, "You used a lot of blue in your work, "Were you in a hurry to finish? What happens when you rush?" "What is your favorite part of your writing? Picture? Why?" Also, employing overused terms such as good job, that's great, and awesome, to reward something as simple as finishing something can create praise junkies while eroding a child's own sense of self worth. Therefore, the teacher's role vacillates between the silent objective observer and the loving mother whose loving arms or warm gaze sends a message that it's okay to be oneself. 3.) What is the best thing about being a teacher? All of it! The freshness, innocence, laughter, surprises, sadness, conflicts solved, forgiveness given, insights shared, and humanity played out in a new way day after day.
  29. 29. Interview with Rachel Rich (Special Education Preschool Teacher with S.C.O.E.) 1.) A lot of modeling and visual supports. For initiating play, staff might help a student approach a another peer's play area by saying "Can I play?" or even just "hi" and/or a wave for nonverbal students. With nonverbal students who are capable, we also have picture cards that have a drawing of kids playing together that they can give to a peer as an indicator that they want to share the play space. We also put out large tubs of materials, rather than individual trays.. to help increase social interaction and the sharing of space and materials. We also do activities at circle time where kids have to interact by passing out materials to each other, or giving each other their pictures (so a kid has to look at the picture, identify who it is, and then hand it to that kid). When they are ready, we may play games such as Ring Around the Rosy, where they have to hold hands and move together, or "Row your Boat", where they have to hold hands in a pair and move together. 2.) For special ed, the students typically need more support for socialization in the form of modeling, some hand-over-hand physical support, and a lot of visual support. For example, we have picture cards that say "happy choice" with a picture of a happy face, for staff to show kids when they are sharing nicely or when they don't hit or bite as another peer approaches (if they have a history of not doing so), and a "sad choice" picture with a sad face to help kids learn what is not appropriate behavior (hitting, kicking, biting, screaming, etc.) Consistency is key! The kids have some delays in speech, sensory regulation, cognition, etc. Some become more easily frustrated due to these delays and may express their frustration with aggression. Staff needs to be nearby to help keeps kids safe if such an occasion arises. Some kids just aren't ready to engage in peer interaction when they first start school, and start with playing on their own with a preferred item.. and then move to parallel play. A lot of the students may also need "breaks" from time to time if they become overstimulated by having too many kids in their space. We teach them how to leave and take a break in a quiet area, then eventually help them recognize themselves, when they need a break. We use visuals for this as well. We may give them a choice-board with two pictures, and say, "Play or Break". 3.) It is so rewarding to watch students make progress! It's so amazing to watch students find their own happiness.
  30. 30. III. Socialization Effects of Different Types of Schools By Nathaniel Rowland
  31. 31. Special Education Inclusion in our Schools Inclusion is an effort to make sure students with disabilities go to school along with their friends and neighbors while also receiving whatever, “specially designed instruction and support” they need to achieve high standards and succeed as learners. • National Institute for Urban School Improvement (nd). Improving education: The promise of inclusive schooling. INCLUSION
  32. 32. Three Principles for Inclusive Practice
  33. 33. Principle One • Principle One: Inclusion is about Community. • Inclusion is more than a Placement or a Service. • It is about creating shared spaces, bringing people together, and giving them a voice. • Traditionally, inclusion is accomplished when children with special needs are found in the same physical classroom space as their typically developing peers. • However, this definition of inclusion does not take into account the significance of relationships at every level of interaction within the classroom. • Looking through a relationship lens, we ask teachers to take one step further toward a conceptualization of inclusive practice that incorporates children’s social and emotional experiences as members of a classroom community.
  34. 34. Principle Two • Principle Two: Inclusion is a Dynamic Process. • It takes place within a living classroom community that continually changes, according to its members, their interests and their needs. • Changes in teachers’ thinking about what makes their classrooms inclusive can lead to changes in their actions in everyday practice. • This reciprocal and synergistic process of change, fuels the ongoing progression of creating more meaningful and authentic social and emotional connections.
  35. 35. Principle Three • Principle Three: Inclusion is about Social Transformation. • Small changes can make a big difference over time. • Changes in thinking lead to changed in action. • Taking your personal experiences with inclusion to the next level through the process of nurturing and challenging others to rethink their own assumptions, is a critical step towards transforming others’ thinking about the value of building truly inclusive communities. • Social transformation comes about when we move beyond our own comfort zones to reach out to others and engage them in the changing process. • Susan L. Recchia, Yoon-Joo Lee, Re-thinking early Childhood Social Inclusion
  36. 36. Including Everyone • What is the definition of “a child with special needs”? • A child with special needs is one who requires specialized care because of physical, emotional, or health relations. • The kinds of disabilities vary greatly, from physical challenges to developmental differences to illness. • Some of these may include communication disabilities, developmental disabilities and delays, emotional and behavioral, visual and hearing impairments, exceptional health needs, learning disabilities, and physical challenges. • Janet Gonzalez-Mena, Child, Family, and Community
  37. 37. Including Everyone • In the past, children with special needs often ended up in special education programs rather than in child care programs designed for everybody’s children. • It helps, though, when we remember that a child with special needs is more similar to than different from other children. • These children need what all children need: a safe, nurturing environment with adults who respect them and know how to meet their needs. • Janet Gonzalez-Mena, Child, Family, and Community
  38. 38. Including Everyone: Steps Taken • 1992, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): Mandate to provide people who have disabilities with access to all community services, including child care. • 1997, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA): Amendments which state; “To the maximum extent appropriate, children with disabilities… are educated with children who are not disabled.” • Janet Gonzalez-Mena, Child, Family, and Community
  39. 39. Bringing Inclusion to the Classroom: Classroom components and Teacher Competencies • Six classroom components • Focuses on overarching principles related to the social and physical classroom environment
  40. 40. Six Teacher Competencies • One: The capacity to nurture and embrace each child as a unique individual who brings a special contribution to the group. • Two: Expectations that all children can meet appropriate educational and developmental goals and a willingness to support them in their efforts toward doing so; a belief that children can and will be successful. • Three: The Teachers’ ability to take the child’s perspective and to attend to that perspective when making decisions that impact daily experiences. • Four: Ways of thinking, ways of being that embrace difference and capitalize on opportunities to bring children together. Five: Openness to reconsidering, rethinking, redoing teaching and learning activities with children in response to their output. • Six: Understanding that equity does not always mean “equality” in an inclusive environment, as different kinds of people need different things to have “equal” access. It is okay to treat children differently. • Susan L. Recchia, Yoon-Joo Lee, Re-thinking early Childhood Social Inclusion
  41. 41. Independent Schools and Inclusion • Until recently, most independent schools weren't set up to offer students with special needs accommodations. Indeed, most independent schools have worked hard to enroll a homogenous group of students with both the motivation and ability to succeed in the schools without special accommodations. • The growing number of students being tested for learning disabilities these days has led to a growing demand from families for academic accommodations and services — not to mention the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) that requires schools to make reasonable accommodations for those students who qualify. • Formal learning centers in competitive independent schools have become a fast growing phenomenon. • The schools developing these programs are not necessarily geared towards students with LD or ADHD, nor do they actively seek to recruit students with learning differences. • As many as 10–20 percent of their student bodies now include those with diagnosed learning issues. • The challenge for schools is to figure out how to maintain their academic integrity and still meet the needs of this population. • Laura VantineSummer 2008, Inclusion in Exclusive Schools: A New Approach to Academic Support
  42. 42. Nathaniel’s Personal Narrative My first experience in school was when I was three years old. I had never attended a school before and was placed in kindergarten at that age. I started in September of 1994, and would turn 4 in early December. The reason that I never had any schooling before that was due to medical complications in my family and my father was in and out of the hospital for most of my first five years. So my mother decided to put me in the same school as both of my older brothers, one in 8th grade and the other in 3rd. I don’t remember much of that first year, but I do remember being held back because I was not ready to move up with the rest of my classmates. I remember being teased by those classmates because I was held back. I remember being called “stupid” or “dumb,” and how much that really effected my young self esteem, and it really followed me through most of my early school years and into some of my later ones. I remember in 3rd grade being in a meeting with one of my teachers and my mother, and being told that I may want to look into being tested for some learning disabilities, because I was behind most of my classmates and there was something wrong. I just remember the feeling of helplessness, that my teacher thought that something was wrong with me. At that age no child wants to hear that they are different from their friends and classmates, and that they may need special help. I was eventually tested and didn’t show any disabilities in the tests. I bring this up because I feel that this topic can really scare some people and it has a negative connotation. People don’t want to feel disabled and parents don’t want to think of their children in that light either, but the more people know about it the more that they can understand the benefits of the system, and ultimately address the child’s needs. That being said I am very happy that there is a great awareness for children and learning disabilities, and that schools are moving towards better solutions to addressing those needs.
  43. 43. Sources • National Institute for Urban School Improvement (nd). Improving education: The promise of inclusive schooling • Susan L. Recchia, Yoon-Joo Lee, Re-thinking early Childhood Social Inclusion • Janet Gonzalez-Mena, Child, Family, and Community • Laura VantineSummer 2008, Inclusion in Exclusive Schools: A New Approach to Academic Support Sources & References used by Nathaniel Rowland

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