Letter of Expectations
Created by: Lizzi Ohmes
What I expect to learn from this Intro. to Special Education course...
I have very high hopes for this course. After reading the syllabus and skimming through some of the assignments for this course, I think the primary focus of the course is to help prepare students to become special education teachers. My career focus in special education will be primarily early childhood aged children. I've always had a love for this age group and would like to show people that just because a child may have special needs doesn't mean they aren't human, contrary to many's beliefs. The few particular special needs that I am most interested in are downs syndrome and various behavior disorders (e.g. children or adults that have frequent violent episodes). My long-range career goal is to develop various types of learning plans for Special Needs Learners. Therefore, another big emphasis in what I would like to gain from this course is how to teach people with special needs. Every special need is different and unique in it's own way and has to be dealt with differently in order for the child or adult to thrive. Of course, I'm not going to be able to learn about every different special need in this short eight week course, but to gain at least a minute bit of information in regards to special education will mean this course has served it's purpose.
Another reason I want to gain more basic knowledge on a variety of special needs is so I can better understand why people with special needs act the way they do sometimes. I think being able to constantly keep my patience in the classroom may be a difficulty that I encounter in my future career. From different encounters I've had with special needs individuals, I haven't always had the best patience. Now, working in an environment where I see them everyday I'm learning more about what they react to more positively or negatively. However, there is no such thing as too much knowledge. I'd like to know more about how to encourage positivity for different individuals and help them when they struggle with various tasks.
When I was much younger, junior high age, I had preconceived notions about Special Needs Learners. I didn't think these type of learners would ever be able to do anything and wouldn't really be able to be successful. I thought that teachers just humored them and their parents to try to make them feel a sense of accomplishment. After being in a work place in which I can evaluate Special Needs Learners, I've learned that none of my preconceived notions were accurate. I've learned that just because they might not thrive in one area doesn't mean they can't in another. They just take longer to understand things sometimes.
I believe the type of student I am in this class can reflect the type of teacher, I will become. Even though my long-range goal is to develop the different learning curriculums, I do plan to be a teacher for at least a short time prior to this to further my experience with Special Needs Learners. I think the kind of student I am will reflect the type of teacher I will become because I'm a very organized person when it comes to school work. Not all of my assignments will be turned in a week early, whereas some of them will. But no matter what, I will get everything submitted. When I'm a teacher, I'm sure I might not have my lesson plans ready very early, but by the time they are needed to be shown to the principal, or be taught, I will have them ready. I will also try to be as creative as possible while I'm a teacher, just as I plan to in this course.
In conclusion, I'm very excited to get started in this course and begin my educational journey to becoming involved in the special education departments later in life. I plan to stay on top of assignments and other tasks during the next eight weeks to keep my grades in line. I also intend to explore the various technology tools Dr. G has kindly provided the class. I've never dealt with any of these tools before and also hope to gain more knowledge on the tools along with all the other special education information I will learn. I most definitely expect myself to receive an A in this course. I've have already upheld a 4.0 grade point average for three semesters and fully intend to continue keeping that grade point average. I expect myself to get everything turned in in a timely manner and to be as creative as I can. I will utilize the creativity Dr. G is allowing us to use on our assignments. When I become a teacher, I fully expect to teach to the best of my abilities. I plan to help my students as much as I possibly can and help them thrive in any way possible.