Greer Gazette

May 2015

Sped Expo

Please join us this summer for great sessions to enhance student learning! Be the first to register on Eduphoria before the sessions fill up!

June 16,17, and 18

July 7, 8 and 9

TBSI Training

Please make sure that you have completed your one time TBSI training through Region IV. This is a three hours on-line course that you can get PD credit for if you complete it over the summer. Dr. Foster wants every special education teacher trained by August 24th. Please send certificate to Stephanie Kircher!

Speech and Language

May is Better Speech and Hearing Month and a huge push for speech and hearing advocacy. This year’s theme is “Early Intervention Counts.”

Here is a link to look at:

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Our next centralized program meeting will be at Greer, May 5th at 4:30.

Please bring a RADD Binder with you as you will be auditing a peer’s binder and giving feedback. Don’t forget to sign up for CPI! Classes are posted on Eduphoria.

General Classroom Management

If you are CPI trained, don’t forget to sign up for your refresher. Your refresher needs to be taken by the last day of the month in which you were trained last. For example, if you trained on July 5th or July 30th, your last day to receive the training, without taking an initial course over again would be July 31st. Classes are posted on Eduphoria.

As we wrap up this school year, be thinking of the following: What were the general housekeeping procedures that I had to review the most with my students? What could I put in place next year that would alleviate constant reminders? What procedures worked the best? What procedures need to be re-thought?

Reflecting on our own behavior and classroom management helps us to identify any weaknesses and improve those strategies we see are working for our students!

McClure Teacher of the Year

Congratulations to McClure’s Teacher of the Year – Lisa Rich. An amazing resource teacher working this year with mainly 5th graders, Lisa goes above and beyond with her students. She helps each child realize and strive to meet their full potential. General education students all know and love Mrs. Rich as she helps all students while providing inclusion support in the 5th grade classrooms. Lisa’s dedication goes beyond her students and the other 5th grade students as she is always willing to help in any way at McClure! Congratulations Lisa!

Wolford Teacher of the Year

Congratulations to Wolford’s Teacher of the Year – Amy Thomas. One of the highest honors is to be selected by your colleagues for the Teacher of the Year nomination. Amy has been on staff for the last five years and has been team leader in the for four years. As Amy works with students it is evident that her passion is to support, nurture, and help striving learners grow academically. She works with children to ensure that the “whole child” is nurtured and guided. Her compassion, gentle nature, and diligence help as she forges and develops relationships with all of her students. Parents and students feel a certain comfort level when they work with Amy. They recognize that her heart is there for all of her kids! Congratulations Amy!

Shining STAAR's

Bonnie Taylor and Jaime Hyde resource teachers at McGowen Elementary started planning and preparing months ago for their students to take the STAAR A. Many of their students had previously taken the STAAR Modified and they knew moving to the STAAR-A assessment would be difficult transition so they planned and worked to ensure pieces they could control moving forward would safeguard success for their students. They started months prior by creating a weekly schedule for their students to practice in the computer lab. After several weeks of practice, the students were able to identify their personal preferences on cards for them to reference as they logged into the system. They eliminated the florescence lights and brought lamps from home and around the school. They purchased seat cushions and/or students had the option of using a yoga ball, spooner board, and brought in back pillows to provide comfort. Each student was given a personal office divider, a ‘help’ stick to indicate they needed help, and was assigned a computer. They created inspirational posters for the lab and a STAAR Checklist for home to help with utilizing tutorials at home, tips for the assessment, and a checklist for the morning of the assessment. They even had back up computers ready just in case there was a technology issue…which there was! “Our kids felt special and part of the decision making by offering them input into their preferences. It was a lot or work but worth it in the end.”

Way to Go Bonnie and Jaime!

Life Skills

Life Skills

Natural Environment Teaching

Natural Environment Teaching (NET) is teaching that occurs away from a direct teaching setting (where skills are presented in a more structured manner, likely at a table, with more traditional instructional materials) and targets skills in a more natural way (hence the ‘N’ part of NET).

NET incorporates activities, games, and other items the student enjoys and takes advantage of their motivation to engage in certain activities. Skills can be worked on naturally as the opportunities present themselves through play and engagement with the student. NET is not having the child play on their own in a designated area, but rather engaging WITH the child in a leisure type environment with items and activities that are valuable to the child in that moment.

Skills may be presented casually and in a way that naturally fits within the activity. For example:

· Using snack time to work on students’ requesting skills

· Working on dressing skills during the toileting routine

· Using songs during circle time to incorporate motor imitation skills

· Working on reciprocal ball play during recess.

Take advantage of natural opportunities to work on students’ skills in the natural environment!

A video link to an example of an NET session



Interval data collection

Data collection is an important part of monitoring behavior/skills and measuring performance. It can also take many forms depending on what you’re tracking and in what capacity.

Interval data collection methods allow you to take a snapshot measurement of the duration or frequency of the behavior being measured using predetermined intervals. It measures the presence or absence of the behavior within specific time intervals.

Three types of interval recording include:

Whole Interval: you are recording whether the behavior occurred throughout the ENTIRE interval

Partial Interval: you are recording whether the behavior occurred at ANY point during the interval

Momentary Time Sample: at pre-designated points you look up and record whether or not the behavior is occurring AT THAT EXACT MOMENT.

With each method you can get an estimation of the frequency or duration of a behavior/s without having to observe the student continually for long periods of time. The observation period is divided into equal time periods. A sample data table may look like this: ( see below)

It’s important that the target behavior you are looking for is specific, objective, and observable.

Interval recording has been used when monitoring students in the General Education classroom, for example when you’re measuring on-task or off-task behavior.

A link to Fast Facts on Data Collection via Direct Measurements of Behavior

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  • Ruthie Mayberry from Evans stepped up in a BIG way! She was asked to fill in for a short time in FAC as teacher because of a unique circumstance. She stepped up and when the job was extended and re-extended she graciously hung in for the kids! Ruthie has brought consistency, structure, and harmony to the classroom. She is the best of the best! Thank you Ruthie!
  • A Special Shout out to Tiffany Shoemaker at Press Elementary! Tiffany with the support of her administrative team used a crisis para in a unique way to decrease behavior for a student. Be watching for more about her out of the box thinking!
  • Thanks to MHS ELAR for meeting with Susan and Katie to look at Assessment Binders!
  • Thanks to Jennifer Hise and Michelle Keffer for mentoring other resource teachers
  • Thanks to Burks for learning how to graph behavior and taking the next step with their data! Way to go!!!
  • Thanks to Brynne Riley for always going above and beyond for our students and staff
  • Thanks to Kelly Lendino for helping AED committees work through MDs!