teaching special education?
teaching special education? I've just been asked to take a Special Education Educator position. I've only taken a couple of relevant classes to this subjects (I specialized on Classroom Teaching). What's the best way to prepare myself. What are some great resources that can help me out? Are there some great suggestions to start out or to use during my time?Submitted: 2162 days ago
You have to be very patient, able to communicate well with parents and children, and above all, PATIENT! If you are dealing with emotionally disabled children, you will have your buttons pushed on a daily basis, and you have to be able to rise above it. You also have to remember, you cant save them all, but you can help give them some important tools that might make their life a little easier. If you are dealing with mentally disabled kids, you have to remember, that like "normal" kids, they all have different levels of skill and functioning. Dont treat them like they were all pressed out of the same mold. Many parents of special needs kids are very involved in the educational process of their children, so be prepared. Good luck! and remember, have fun!
the internet is an excellent resource. Check the CEC (council for exceptional children) website. Also check the learning disabilities association of america website. Talk to other more experienced special educators, they are your BEST resources. There are plenty of books on the various disabilities. Check your school's library. There are also various YahooGroups you can join where you can talk to experienced special educators.
I also suggest that you start off by explaining your expectations to the students. Special ed kids need boundaries the same as all kids do. Remember to treat the kids and not the disability
I have a child in sp ed. So coming from a parents perception, be open and prepared for parents ideas of what they what their child to know. I have had sp ed teachers whom were passionate about what they do and then i have had ones who wouldn't say what they thought a child needed because their supervisor had "talked" with them before hand. I praise you for even considering teaching the not so easy to teach. Your heart will melt when it finally clicks and a child understands what you are teaching them. Our children are so precious! Good luck
According to federal special ed law called IDEA, teachers are to be 'highly qualified' and have specialized training in the disability the child has.
First of all, be consistant. Post your rules and live by them! The more structure the students have, the better.
Second, learn a little about each student. I start each year with a note home and give the parents the chance to tell me all about the child. I call the note "In a million words or less..." and tell the parents to tell me good things, relevant medical issues, or about any concerns. It is a nice way to let the parents express their feelings.
Next, make good calls/notes home during the first month of school. Most parents only receive bad news from school and this kind of throws them off... plus, they are more apt to back you up later!
Finally, I'm concerned that your district would put you in a position that you don't have a certification in. This is kind of setting you up for failure. You need to be very careful in the writing and implementation of each student's IEP. If not, you could face major legal issues. I would definitely find a mentor that is available to help you with the legal issues as well as with the day to day running of your classroom!!
go in open minded. dont be a teacher that doesnt accomodate students. i see this all the time, which makes for an unsuccesful year for the students. I have seen special Ed teachers set students up for failure.
I am a special needs parents. I am like the other parent who posted. I've has exceptional special ed teachers and I've also has bad special education teachers. I am also becoming a special education teacher because of what I have learned about my child's disability. Please don't accept a special education position just to increase your salary. If you haven't had the training or experience on working or dealing with children with social, language, emotional delays, etc. please DO NOT do it. It is a nightmare for parents trying to do the best for their kids when they are stonewalled by teachers who are not properly educated but become greater experts on a particular child than the devoted parents. So my advice is that I hope you re-consider and let someone devoted to the interests of special needs children have that position. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE.
Just curious though. Are you in Texas?
Social skills training
Adaptations and Modifications
A wonderful and helpful book is "You're Gonna Love This Kid" by Paula Kluth. It's theme is teaching (as a newbie) in an inclusive classroom..mostly autistic children, yet it can apply to many special needs. Paula Kluth is well known in the sped field for her teaching skills. She speaks all over the country and offers great insight.
I must say, it is disturbing that you have only taken a "couple relevant classes." Disturbing in the sense your school system offered you this position when by federal law in IDEA you have to be qualified educationally..preferably overqualified. Personally, if my child were being taught by a less than qualified educator, I would sue. I am not saying this to berate you, but to inform you that we parents of special needs children are fierce protectors and advocates.
Should you choose to accept this position, personally I believe, you should contact any special education teacher in your district and pick their brains.
#1 don't threat them as retartded. Gain their trust and respect and work with their abilities.
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