Special Education Field Experience
The Students I Observed
The Specific Learners I observed were Autistic, ADHD, ADD, PPSD, MR, developmentally delayed and emotionally delayed.
The Learning & Teaching Setting
I observed all different learning settings the first part of my observations were done in the special education room. It was a decent size classroom with nice big tables filled with computers and Ipad's it was an awesome atmosphere. The second time I observed I was in the classroom experiencing special education students in a regular classroom setting. I also observed in the social workers room while she took one of the special education students into her room to do play therapy.
The Effectiveness Of the teaching Strategies
While I was observing I experienced great teaching strategies from the special education teacher, regular classroom teachers, paras and from the building's social worker. The one thing I herd over and over again was visuals and hands on manipulative's are key. I would agree, the teacher would verbally explain it but then when they used visuals and hands on manipulative's it was a whole different world the student was able to understand and connect with the teacher. Another strategy I saw was using an exercise ball as a chair. The excise ball would provide the student with stimulation, balance and movement the child lacks while sitting in the classroom all day. Another thing saw a lot of teachers use was a timer that way the student would know when they have to put something up that they are playing with or when they need to finish up their work or when they get their snack. It helps teach the concept of time and an understanding that every activity is limited to a set amount of time and makes transitions smoother. There was lot of different strategies the teachers used that I found to be very effective in and out of the classroom.
I had an awesome time observing special education students and just loving on them both days I observed! The teachers were awesome and had such great strategies and huge hearts. I think the key to teaching special education students would be patience and love. A lot of these students have been through a lot for the amount of time they have been living and teachers have a huge part in shaping their lives. As for me being a special education student in elementary school I will tell you when I passed college algebra I emailed the paras that worked with me and my special ed teacher and thanked them without their help I wouldn't be where I am today. These teachers can make and break a kid but the most important thing any teacher can give a child is love, support and to believe in their students. Thank you for giving me this opportunity to observe and learn in an awesome environment!