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Karléah's Observed Some Special Ed. Classrooms

Minneha Elementary Kindergarten & First Grade

At first, when I was in the Kindergarten room, it felt comfortable and beautiful like any other reg. ed. Kindergarten classroom. Then, I was quickly able to determine the children who required a bit of extra love. I even got one who was very active and easily distracted to fall in love with me. I got him to relax, sit still, pay attention, and participate. He almost fell asleep during the math portion of the day, he was so comfortable sitting with me. Needless to say, his chair had to be moved away from me and the table, so that he didn't have a place to rest his head. Ha ha! The teacher had a simple way of addressing the misbehaviours of the SPED children. If they were doing something they weren't supposed, she'd simply look at them, shake her head, and say, "No, thank you." It was effective 90% of the time. Other times, the para might have needed to step in and help, so that the misbehaviour didn't disrupt the entire class for too long, if at all. During some whole group movement activities, some of the SPED students weren't participating, the teacher would go to a student and help move the student's body to encourage them to do what the rest of the class was doing.

When I go to the first grade class, it was a lot more active than the Kindergarten one. The majority of the students were moving around and talking and doing very little listening. The teacher was at her breaking point for the day, too. I remember her saying that were it not Friday, she didn't know what she'd do. Looking at the way her class was acting, I could understand her feeling. I think that it was a great help when she put me at the table with two of the most disruptive children. I got them to calmly work. I'm no magician. I think that the biggest part of it was that I was a new person. However, I will say that regardless of where I go. I clearly inform children of their boundaries and I follow through on any sort of consequence that is discussed. The children were very sweet, they, like many special needs children, just needed a little extra patience and love. My presence was a major relief for the teacher that day.


Gardiner Elementary Kindergarten

Gardiner was similar, yet different. Of course, young children will always be young children, regardless of where you are in the world. This teacher has trained her students very well. Some of the SPED students in this classroom were due to being English Language Learners. The students who had behaviour issues weren't that bad at all. They had a clear understanding of the rules and expectations, as well as the consequences should they not meet those expectations. The teacher did very little verbal disciplining. She had them so well trained that all she had to do was point her finger or nod her head to the behaviour chart, or the rethink chair, and the kid got up without arguing or talking back about the situation. When the SPED students were in the room, the teacher ensured that they, especially, were sitting closer to her and had their eyes and attention locked on her. Unfortunately, they were pulled in and out of the class a lot throughout the day, for speech or ESOL or reading/math intervention. I would have liked to see more of them in action.
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