Category Archives: How to Teach Students with Special Needs

Speech and Language Disorders

Speech and Language Disorders:

Language and speech impairments are defined by the Ministry of Education as follows:

Language impairment: a learning disorder characterized by an impairment in comprehension and/or the use of verbal communication or the written or other symbol system of communication, which may be associated with neurological, psychological, physical, or sensory factors, and which may:

a) involve one or more of the form, content, and function of language in communication; and

b) include one or more of: language delay; dysfluency; voice and articulation development, which may or may not be organically or functionally based.

 Speech impairment: a disorder in language formulation that may be associated with neurological, psychological, physical, or sensory factors; that involves perceptual motor aspects of transmitting oral messages; and that may be characterized by impairment in articulation, rhythm, and stress.

From the Special Education Companion (2002)

This is Angela:

Basically a Language Impairment affects the way language is received or expressed (Receptive or Expressive Language).  Language is thought of as a whole, and meaing is affected.  The person may produce language that is incomprehensible or not be able to comprehend language.

A Speech Impairment affects the way sound is produced.  A person with a speech impairment will still understand language.  The way speech sounds are produced are affected through impairments in articulation, rhythm, and stress. 

For example, a person with a speech impairment may stutter, but still use language in a meaningful way and be able to comprehend language (spoken or written).

A person with a language impairment may speak clearly, but not say things in a meaningful way or may not be able to understand language (spoken or written).

From the Special Education Companion (2002):

Speech and language impairments or disorders are strongly connected to learning, literacy, and social development and, as a result, can have a significant impact on the student’s ability to function well in school. Speech and language disorders may exist alone or along with other Exceptionalities.

Speech disorders involve difficulties with speech production that interfere with communication (e.g. articulation, fluency, and voice). Language disorders involve difficulties in understanding and in using verbal and non-verbal information for a variety of purposes (e.g. learning, academics, social interaction).

Speech and language disorders can affect listening, speaking, reading, writing, learning, and social skills. They can therefore affect all aspects of a student’s school life and may be key features of other exceptionalities. Other sections of this Companion contain many references to communication strategies and many suggestions that may be helpful to teachers of students who have speech and language disorders.

Speech/language pathologists conduct assessments that determine the nature and extent of the speech/language disorder and provide recommendations for program accommodations and teaching strategies, as well as alternative learning expectations. These assessments and recommendations are documented in the speech/language pathology report, which provides the foundation for the student’s Individual Education Plan.

Assessment information may also be available from a preschool early intervention program, if the student attended one. Information from such a program, however, may not cover all aspects of the curriculum that need to be addressed. Further assessment and/or observation in the classroom setting may be required.

Resources on the internet include:

Aphasia http://www.aphasiahope.org/

 

Canadian Stuttering Association http://www.stutter.ca

 

Ontario Association for Families of Children with Communication Disorders http:/www.oafccd.com

Finally….

The Special Education Companion, 2002 (do you sense a theme here?)

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Speech and Language Impairment’ you have 10 pages of characterisitics of these students, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

http://educ.queensu.ca/e-services/it/documentation/speced2002.pdf

Please give comments with your favourite websites for people with Speech and Language Disorders – share the wealth!

Remember: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website. This is a forum for sharing.

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!) Thank you!

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Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Speech and Language Disorders

Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)

Sensory Processing Disorder was previously called Sensory Intergration Disorder (SID).  This is when sensory stimuli is experienced as too intense or too mild compared to typical peers.

Check out this video from http://www.sensorystreet.com/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6O6Cm0WxEZA

 

Carol Stock Kranowitz is a pioneer in this field.

This is her website: http://out-of-sync-child.com/

Books about Sensory Processing Disorder by Carol Stock Kranowitz

Stock Kranowitz, C. (2003) The Out-of-Synch Child Has Fun: activities for kids with Sensory Integration Dysfunction, Pedigree, USA

Stock Kranowitz, C,  (revised 2005) The Out-Of-Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping With Sensory Processing Disorder

From http://out-of-sync-child.com/

For 25 years, I taught at St. Columba’s Nursery School in Washington, DC.  Most preschoolers loved my classes involving music, movement, and dramatic play. Every day, small groups of three-, four-, and five-year-olds would come to my room to play, move, and learn. They happily pounded on drums and xylophones, sang and clapped, danced and twirled. They shook beanbags, manipulated puppets, and enacted fairy tales. They waved the parachute, played musical follow-the-leader games, and flowed through obstacle courses. They swooped like kites, stomped like elephants, and melted like snowmen.

Most children enjoy such activities because they have effective sensory processing—the ability to organize sensory information for use in daily life. They take in sensations of touch, movement, sight, and sound coming from their bodies and the world around them, and they respond in a well-regulated way.

Some children, however, such as Andrew, Ben, and Alice, did not enjoy coming to my classroom. Faced with the challenge of sensory-motor experiences, they became tense, unhappy, and confused. They refused to participate in the activities, or did so ineffectively, and their behavior disrupted their classmates’ fun. They are the children for whom this book is written.

Other Sensory Processing Disorder Resources:

Sensory Processing Disorder Canada Foundation http://www.spdcanada.org/

Sensory Street http://www.sensorystreet.com/

Outstanding resource for learning about sensory processing disorder and strategies to deal with out-of-synch kids

Smith, K. & Grouze, K. (2004) The Sensory Sensitive Child: Practical solutions for out of bounds behaviour. William Morrow, USA

Talmage, K. & Dobrofsk, V. (2007) Climbing Art Obstacles in Autism, Tasks Galore Publishing Inc., USA

Great step-by step projects with senosry expectations clearly identified (so you can plan a lesson based on the senses you want to explore)

Yack, E., Sutton, S. and P. Aquilla (1998)  Building Bridges Through Sensory Integration: occupational therapy for children with Autism and other Pervasive Developmental Disorders, Print 3, Willowdale, ON 

THIS IS THE BEST CANADIAN RESOURCE CURRENTLY IN PRINT! (Yes, the authors are awesome too!)

 Veenendall, J. (2008) Arnie and his School Tools: Simple sensory solutions that build success, Autism Asperger Publishing Company, USA

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Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)

Physical Exceptionalities

Physical disabilities are defined by the Ontario Ministry of Education as follows:

Physical disability: a condition of such sereve physical limitation or deficiency as to require special assistance in learning situations to provide the opportunity for educational achievement equivalent to that of pupils without exceptionalities who are of the same age or development level.          Special Education Companion (2002)

This is pretty depressing – for a better definition check out the Push Girls!

Also from the Special Education Companion (2002):

.All students, including exceptional students, have their own unique set of learning strengths and needs. It is as important to identify a student’s strengths as it is to determine his or her needs. Many factors – physical, intellectual, educational, cultural, emotional, and social – influence a student’s ability to learn. The student’s strengths can be used to address his or her weaknesses. Understanding and noting them is critical to appropriate program development.

Students who have physical disabilities exhibit a wide range of conditions. These conditions generally fall under the categories of nervous system* disorders, musculoskeletal* conditions, and/or chronic health conditions. Students with these conditions may experience limitations to their strength, speed, endurance, and motor function. Some students may have a combination of conditions. Students with physical disabilities must be given opportunities to integrate into the whole school environment. [*Note: the term neuromuscular may be more accurate]

While no list is complete, the following conditions and traits may be found in varying degrees in a student identified as having physical disabilities: nervous system disorders, musculoskeletal conditions, chronic health conditions, hydrocephalus, speech impairments, visual impairments, spasticity, and seizures.

These conditions and traits may affect the student’s: strength, energy,  endurance/stamina, motor functioning, balance and coordination, reflexes, dexterity, speech, sensation and sensory skills, and regular attendance at school

The student’s needs and strengths can be affected by changes in both the environment and his or her physical condition. If such changes are identified, then a review of the student’s Individual Education Plan is warranted. This review would be in addition to the regular reviews.

Check out the video by Toronto’s Luke Anderson http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8O_x8G6PwDM and his Ramp Project http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2011/12/01/f-vp-fatah.html

Also, visit Ricky Tsang from Ajax, Ontario

On his new book –  youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1rmxNMU9aI 

On TV, talking about being an author –  youtube (he did the subtitles himself!) 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=DjVFufiiaVs&feature=endscreen

and his website http://www.rickytsang.ca/

 

Information about Multiple, Neurological and Physical Exceptionalities:

Brock University & Ontario Brain Injury Association (2003) Educating Educators about Acquired Brain Injury www.abieducation.com

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital http://www.hollandbloorview.ca/index.php

Government of Alberta Education (2011) Understanding Medical and Disability Information for Classroom Teachers  http://www.learnalberta.ca/content/inmdict/html/index.html

Muscular Dystrophy Canada http://www.muscle.ca/

Muscular Dystrophy Canada (2011) Muscle Facts: school resource guide. (This is AWESOME!)http://www.muscle.ca/fileadmin/National/Muscular_Dystrophy/Educators/MuscleFacts_SchoolResourceGuide2011_BoldHeadings.pdf

Motion Specialties – this commercial website has an excellent resource page on specific medical conditions (ALS, DMD, etc) http://www.motionspecialties.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=346&Itemid=281

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke http://www.ninds.nih.gov/index.htm http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/spina_bifida/spina_bifida.htm

http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/spina_bifida/spina_bifida.htm

Ontario Brain Injury Association http://www.obia.ca/

Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy http://www.ofcp.ca/

Play 2 Podium magazine http://play2podium.com/

Special Needs Computers http://www.specialneedscomputers.ca/index.php?l=product_list&c=18

Treat NMD http://www.treat-nmd.eu/

Also, check the

The Special Education Companion, 2002 (do you sense a theme here?)

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Speech and Language Impairment’ you have 10 pages of characterisitics of these students, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

http://educ.queensu.ca/e-services/it/documentation/speced2002.pdf

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Filed under Action - People with Exceptionalities in Action, How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Neuromuscular, Physical Exceptionalities

Special Education Websites

Special Education Websites:

Check them out, bookmark them, revisit often.

Ask Lindsey, OACRS http://www.oacrs.com/en/AskLindsay

The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) www.cec.sped.org

Disability Resource Network of BC   http://www.drnbc.org

Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke  www.ninds.nih.gov

National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities  http://nichcy.org/

Ontario Association of Children’s Rehabilitation Services http://www.oacrs.com/

SNOW – Inclusive Design Research Centre, OCAD University http://snow.idrc.ocad.ca/

Teacher’s Gateway to Special Education

http://www.teachspeced.ca/index.php?q=splash

 

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Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Special Education

Learning Disability

Learning disabilities are defined by the Ontario Ministry of Education as follows:

Learning disability: a learning disorder evident in both academic and social situations that involves one or more of the processes necessary for the proper use of spoken language or the symbols of communication, and that is characterized by a condition that:

a) is not primarily the result of: impairment of vision, impairment of hearing, physical disability, developmental disability, primary emotional disturbance, or cultural difference;

b) results in a significant discrepancy between academic achievement and assessed intellectual ability, with deficits in one or more of the following: receptive language (listening, reading), language processing (thinking, conceptualizing, integrating), expressive language (talking, spelling, writing), mathematical computations; and

 c) may be associated with one or more conditions diagnosed as: a perceptual handicap, a brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia or developmental aphasia.

Special Education Companion (2002)

Note the emphasis on the “significant discrepancy between academic achievement and assessed intellectual ability.”  Students with Learning Disabilities have average to above-average intelligence, with a specific deficit in an academic area (this includes memory, processing, decoding, math abilty).  This contrasts with students who have a Developmental Disability or Mild Intellectual Disability – these students have much lower cognitive abilty (i.e. below average intelligence.)

Bottom line: students with Learning Disabilities have at least average cognitive ability (intelligence), they just need help in a specific area.

How to teach students with Learning Disabilities:

 Alberta Education – Government of Alberta (2002) Unlocking Potential: Key Components of Programming for Students with Learning Disabilities http://education.alberta.ca/media/511999/unlocking.pdf

Websites and Organizations for Learning Disabilities:

Canadian Dyslexia Association http://www.dyslexiaassociation.ca/

Learning Disabilities Association of Canada (LDAC) http://www.ldac-acta.ca/index.php  

Learning Disability Association of Ontario (LDAO)   http://www.ldao.ca/

LD Online http://www.ldonline.org

Non-Verbal Learning Disabilities http://www.nldline.com/

Putting a Canadian Face on Learning Disabilities http://www.pacfold.ca/

LD Pride Online www.ldpride.net

Classic Books and Videos about Learning Disabilities:

McCarney SB.  (2006) Pre Referral Intervention Manual (PRIM)3rd Ediion Hawthorne Publishing

This is the BIBLE of strategies for students with LD.  You need ideas for organisation – they will give you 67 different ones to try.

Richard Lavoie: How Difficult Can This Be? F.A.T. City–A Learning Disabilities Workshop DVD (1989) PBS Video

Richard Lavoie’s work is also at http://www.ricklavoie.com/videos.html

Here;s a youtube clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhzh9kt8z7c  you can find clips of his videos there (illegally)

Finally….

The Special Education Companion, 2002 (do you sense a theme here?)

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Learning Disability you have 10 pages of characterisitics of  students with LD, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

Please give comments with your favourite websites for people with Learning Disabilities – share the wealth!

Remember: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website. This is a forum for sharing.

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!) Thank you!

Leave a comment

Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Learning Disability

Behaviour Exceptionalities

Behavioural exceptionalities are defined by the Ministry of Education as follows:

Behaviour: A learning disorder characterized by specific behaviour problems over such a period of time, and to such a marked degree, and of such a nature, as to adversely affect educational performance, and that may be accompanied by one or more of the following:

a) an inability to build or to maintain interpersonal relationships;

b) excessive fears or anxieties;

c) a tendency to compulsive reaction;

d) an inability to learn that cannot be traced

(In short, it depends, but you’ll know it when you see it 😉

Websites and Organizations for Behaviour Exceptionalities:

Centre for ADHD Awareness http://www.caddac.ca/

Sick Kids ADHD Clinic http://www.sickkids.ca/HealthInFocus/ADHD/index.html

Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder  www.chadd.org

Tourette Syndrome Foundation of Canada http://tourette.ca/

Shaping a Culture of Respect in Our Schools: Promoting Safe and Healthy Relationships (2008)

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/teachers/RespectCulture.pdf

Information about the Ministry’s Safe Schools strategy and related resources

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/teachers/safeschools/html

 Positive Behaviour Support Programs:

Office of Special Education Programs, US Department of Education. Positive Behavioural Interventions and Supports http://www.pbis.org/

Bucket Fillers (School Wide Positive Behaviour Support) http://www.bucketfillers101.com/

Books on Behaviour Exceptionalities & how to deal with them

Brewer, R. & Mueller, T (2010)  Strategies at Hand: quick and handy positive behaviour support strategies, Autism Asperger Publishing Company, Council for Exceptional Children, USA

Buron, K.D. (2006) When My Worries Get Too Big: a relaxation book for children who live with Anxiety, Autism Asperger Publishing Company, Council for Exceptional Children, USA

Dornbush, M. & Pruitt, S. (1995) Teaching the Tiger: a handbook for individuals involved in the education of students with Attention Deficit Disorders, Tourette Syndrome or Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Hope Press, CA USA This is an oldie but a CLASSIC for understanding ADHD

Kearney, K. (2007)  Understanding Applied Behaviour Analysis: an Introduction to ABA for Parents, Teachers, and other Professionals, Jessica Kingsley Publishers Ltd, London

Alberta Education – Government of Alberta (2006) Focusing on Success: Teaching Students with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. http://education.alberta.ca/media/511987/focus.pdf

Jones, F. (2000)  Tools for Teaching: discipline, instruction and motivation, Fredric Jones and Associates Publishing, USA

Lavoie, R. (2008) The Motivation Breakthrough: secrets to turning on the tuned-out child, DVD PBS Video

Packer, L. & Pruitt, S. (2010)  Challenging Kids, Challenged Teachers: Teaching students with Tourette’s, Bipolar Disorder, Executive Dysfunction, OCD, ADHD and more, Woodbine House Publishing, USA

Wong, H.K. (2004) The First Days of School: how to be an effective teacher. Ingram Book Company, USA

Finally….

The Special Education Companion, 2002 (do you sense a theme here?)

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Behaviour Exceptionality’ you have 10 pages of characterisitics of these  students, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

Please give comments with your favourite websites for people with  Behaviour Exceptionalities – share the wealth!

Remember: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website. This is a forum for sharing.

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!) Thank you!

Leave a comment

Filed under Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - ADHD and ADD, Behaviour Exceptionality, How to Teach Students with Special Needs

IEPs – Individual Education Plans

Want to read an IEP?

Check the sample IEPs at http://www.ontariodirectors.ca/IEP-PEI/en.html  There are examples for every category of Exceptionality and in both the Elementary and Secondary panel.

Books on IEPs, the Identification and IEP-writing process and Programming ideas:

Bateman, B.D. & Herr, C.M. (2006) Writing Measurable IEP Goals and Objectives 2nd Edition, Attainment Company, USA

ETFO Special Education Handbook: A Practical Guide for All Teachers (you can buy it on ETFO’s website http://www.etfo.ca/Pages/default.aspx – consider it money well spent)

Special Education, a Guide for Educators, 2001

This is my all-time favorite document that provides an easy-to-read overview of the Special Education System in Ontario.  Includes categories of Exceptionalities, Funding, IPRC and IEP info as well as funding and appeal information.  A must read! http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/guide.html

Now you’re ready to write an IEP.  Here are some important documents to have on hand:

Individual Education Plans (IEP) Samples: Resources to Support the Development and Implementation of Effective IEPs in Ontario http://www.ontariodirectors.ca/IEP-PEI/en.html

IEP Checklist http://www.peopleforeducation.com/adx/aspx/adxGetMedia.aspx?DocID=865

The Individual Education Plan (IEP) A Resource Guide (2004)

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/guide/resource/iepresguid.pdf

Special Education Companion (Ontario Curriculum Unit Planner) Still the best list of accommodations and modifications that are specific to an Exceptionality available.

http://www.ocup.org/resources/documents/companions/speced2002.pdf

Transition Planning: A Resource Guide

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/transiti.html

The Special Education Companion, 2002

(aka Ontario Curriculum Unit Planner) Still the best list of accommodations and modifications that are specific to an Exceptionality available.

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Gifted’ you have 10 pages of characterisitics of gifted students, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

http://www.ocup.org/resources/documents/companions/speced2002.pdf

 

(PS. The Special Education Companion is listed twice on this page for a reason – check it out!)

Note: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website.  This is a forum for sharing. 

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!)  Thank you!

Leave a comment

Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, IEPs - Individual Education Plans