Classroom Management Series
Welcome to NASET’s Classroom Management Series.
These series of articles will provide teachers with practical guidelines covering a variety of topics and supportive information which may help improve their classroom. There are a variety of settings in which teachers may be hired in the field of special education, including a resource room, self contained special class or an inclusion setting. We feel that it is critical for teachers working with special needs to have a real grasp on what is involved in creating the most ideal and practical classroom for their students with special needs.
The Classroom Management Series will focus on topics for both new and experienced teachers, including topics on setting up your classroom, behavioral management, adapting curriculum, working with different personality styles of students, assisting parents of children with special needs, and many more relevant topics.
We hope you enjoy each of the articles in the series. As always, we seek your feedback, opinions, comments, and ideas for future articles. Please feel free to write us at any time at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Classroom Management Series Articles
This issue of NASET’s Classroom Management series was written by Joan M. Fenske RN, MS, PhD. “Lillian’s Lessons” is an original 3730-word manuscript describing the critical functions performed by a special education teacher. The essential role of the special education teacher provides not only the student but also the family with multiple lessons learned. In addition, all members of the student’s interdisciplinary team as well as administrators and school board members learn how a special education curriculum educates all who participate. The first person narrative is used to enliven the premise of the material. All subjects covered are referenced within the body of the manuscript using American Psychological Style (APA) format. Individuals named are fictional and/or no longer alive thus no privacy issues pertain to activities portrayed.
This issue of NASET’s Classroom Management Series was written by Dr. Marquis Grant. In the article, Dr. Grant addresses the fact that advocacy for children is very important. Parents are a child’s first and best advocates, bringing special knowledge and expertise to the academic environment, which should be encouraged and respected (Oregon Council for Developmental Disabilities, 2005). Yet, when it comes to the nuances of education, parents often perceive themselves to be outsiders when it comes to their child’s academics. Research supports Family and parent engagement as being paramount in the academic success of students (Johns, 2013). In fact, data shows that 86% of the general public believes that school improvement depends heavily on support from parents. Lack of parental involvement is the biggest problem facing public schools (Michigan Department of Education, 2001). As a child matriculates through his educational careers, parent support declines considerably from each year to the next; by the time a student reaches high school, parent involvement is typically non-existent. But if parents have a central role in influencing their children's progress in school, research has shown that schools in turn have an important part to play in determining levels of parent involvement (Michigan Department of Education, 2001). Recent research indicates that family resistance to school involvement can be reversed. (McDermott and Rothenberg, 2000).
How Teacher Personality and Style Affects the Growth of Self Confidence Series
More and more, teachers are becoming a primary influence in children’s lives, and in some cases they may be the only healthy adults some children encounter during the day. Twenty five years ago family structures were different, and teachers did not require the depth and variety of social/emotional skills that are required of today’s teachers. Teachers today are not only educators, but therapists, parent substitutes, mentors, advocates, and more.
Therefore, it stands to reason that a teacher’s personality and teaching style can have a profound impact on children’s academic performance and general development. The importance of teaching style in creating a positive environment in which student confidence is fostered is the discussion of this series. It will be very important to step back and evaluate how you are defined as a teacher, your goals in teaching, and the manner in which you present yourself to students. Does your teaching style allow for an environment where confidence, security, performance and well being can really be reinforced or an environment that may actually impede the these and other factors in children?
No single aspect of a teacher’s personality may be responsible for improving or impeding the growth of confidence in a student. For example, a very strict teacher who is fair, kind, genuine, logical, and nurturing may facilitate the growth of self confidence and well being despite being very strict. On the other hand, a teacher who is funny but unstructured and disorganized may not facilitate children’s self confidence or enhance performance. Despite the fact that the children love the teacher, they may not gain confidence or academic growth if the teacher cannot provide the real-life success experiences necessary for the growth of self confidence, academic performance, security and personal growth.
Part I - Positive Teacher Characteristics
Part II - Negative Teacher Characteristics
Adapting Curriculum for Students with Special Needs Series
One of the most important things to keep in mind when working with student with special needs is that they can learn. In many cases, it is not the lack of understanding or knowledge that causes problems but rather the manner of presentation, response requirements, and level of presentation. The need to learn how to adapt material is crucial when working with this population. These adaptations offer them a better chance of success and task completion.
Many times, teachers of students with special needs realize that these students will not be able to learn the material being presented unless some changes or adaptations are made. These changes may need to be made in the manner of presentation of the material, the type of material presented, the manner of response, the tests and quizzes presents, homework expectations, and grading systems used. All of these adaptations increase a student’s chances of learning something. NASET’s 9 part series, Adapting Curriculum for Students with Special Needs Series, will consist of the following:
Part I - What are Curriculum Adaptations?
Part II - Nine Ways to Adapt Instruction
Part V - Adapting Response Mode
Part IX - Adapting Grading Systems
Functional Behavioral Assessment
Functional behavioral assessment is generally considered to be a problem-solving process for addressing student problem behavior. It relies on a variety of techniques and strategies to identify the purposes of specific behavior and to help IEP teams select interventions to directly address the problem behavior. Functional behavioral assessment should be integrated, as appropriate, throughout the process of developing, reviewing, and, if necessary, revising a student’s IEP. A functional behavioral assessment looks beyond the behavior itself. The focus when conducting a functional behavioral assessment is on identifying significant, pupil-specific social, affective, cognitive, and/or environmental factors associated with the occurrence (and non-occurrence) of specific behaviors. This broader perspective offers a better understanding of the function or purpose behind student behavior.
Behavioral intervention plans based on an understanding of "why" a student misbehaves are extremely useful in addressing a wide range of problem behaviors. This new series is designed to provide you with the resources needed to understand the usefulness of functional behavioral assessments and behavioral intervention plans in addressing student problem behavior, as well as what the law requires of school districts with regard to these topics.
This will be a 3 part series and will include the following:
Part I - An IEP Team’s Introduction To Functional Behavioral Assessment And Behavior Intervention Plans
Part II - Conducting a Functional Behavioral Assessment May (A), & June (B)
Part III - Direct and Indirect Measures of Student Behavior
Links to each issue of this series:
Part I - Click Here
Part II-(A) - Click Here
Part II-(B) - Click Here
Part III - Click Here
Research Based Strategies for the Classroom
Series V of Classroom Management is titled Research Based Strategies for the Classroom.
Connecting research recommendations to practice can improve instruction. These key research-based strategies have impact on student achievement—helping all students, in all kinds of classrooms. Strategies are organized into categories of familiar practices in order to help you fine-tune your teaching to improve student achievement. The topices that will be coivered in this series will include the following:
Part I - Thematic Instruction
Students learn better from thematic, interdisciplinary instruction -- themes are a way of understanding new concepts and provide mental organizing schemes.
Part II - Identifying Similarities and Differences
Learning to classify and discern differences and similarities prepares students for employing metaphor, analogy, and higher-order thinking skills.
Part III - Summarizing and Note Taking
Effective summarizing requires analysis that leads to deeper understanding. Students benefit from taking notes in both linguistic and visual forms.
Part IV - Reinforcing Effort
Student attitudes and beliefs have a significant effect on success in school. Achievement can increase when teachers show the connection between effort and success.
Part V - Homework and Practice
Homework can increase student understanding when assignments provide the opportunities needed to practice and apply new learning.
Part VI - Nonlinguistic Representation
We store knowledge in two forms: linguistic and nonlinguistic. The more students use both systems, the better they are able to think about and recall knowledge.
Part VII - Cooperative Grouping
Grouping can promote student learning and build interpersonal skills when done wisely and support structures are in place.
Part VIII - Setting Objectives
Teachers communicate learning goals to students every day. Focus students on meeting those goals and greatly improve their chances of success.
Part IX - Providing Feedback
Criteria for success and specific, timely feedback can help increase students understanding and improve learning.
Part X - Generating and Testing Hypotheses
Generating hypotheses and applying knowledge when testing requires careful orchestration of experience. Technology tools add authenticity to the learning experience.
Part XI - Cues Questions, and Advance Organizers
Increase students' readiness for learning with cues and questions that connect new ideas to existing knowledge.
Part XII - Simulations and Games
Simulation offer unique opportunities to enhance learning and allow students to test knowledge, gain experience, and practice skills.
Behavior Crisis Management Tools
The Classroom Management Series IV is titled Behavior Crisis Management Tools. This series focused on practical and productive techniques that can be used in a variety of behavior crisis situations that may occur in a classroom. Teachers have told us that one of their major concerns has been dealing with severe behavior problems in the classroom.
While there are many different types of crisis situations that may occur having the proper “tools” can prevent a situation from becoming even worse. This Classroom Management Series provided a variety of crisis tools for all types of situations. These tools have been gathered over the years and have been very successful in actual classroom situations.
Series IV Links:
Part 1 - Pre-Empt Behavior
Part 2 - Proximity Teaching
Part 3 - Forced Choice Technique
Part 5 - "This is not Open for Discussion”
Part 6 - Controlling Student Outcomes
Part 9 - Teacher as Judge
Part 11 - Developing Manageable Consequences
Part 12 - Removal of the Audience
Part 13 - Attention Seeking Students
Part 14 - The Use of Delay as a Discipline Tool
Part 16 - Initiating Compliments
Part 17 - Points to Remember
Teachers Responsibilities in the Identification and Reporting of Abuse and Neglect
As special education teachers and mandated reporters you are faced with an extraordinary responsibility in making sure that all the children you come into contact with on a daily basis are not being mistreated, abused or neglected. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that in 1999, 58.4 percent of all child maltreatment victims were found to have been neglected (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001). In other words, of the 826,000 maltreated children in the United States in 1999, 482,000 were neglected. Although the rate of neglect has decreased from 7.7 per 1,000 children in 1995 to 6.5 per 1,000 children in 1999, neglect remains the most common form of maltreatment.
But these numbers only include the children who have been reported to Child Protective Service (CPS) agencies and whose cases were substantiated.1 A study conducted in 1993 found that almost two million children were endangered by neglect in the United States (Sedlack & Broadhurst, 1996). Clearly, the problem of neglect is pervasive. This Classroom Series will provide you with all the information necessary in identifying, understanding, reporting, and possibly preventing a child from being abused or neglected. While it is only your responsibility as a mandated reporter to “suspect” abuse or neglect and report it according to the laws of your state, the picture of abuse and neglect is larger than just the identification and reporting of such serious situations.
Series III Links:
Part 1 - Definition of Abuse and Neglect
Part 3 - What is Neglect
The Step-by-Step Guide to Building Confidence In the Classroom
The Importance of Building Confidence in the Classroom - Overview
Building Confidence in the Classroom-The Use of Positive Restructuring for Children is being presented to help you understand the very necessary foundational process we call confidence building with every child in the classroom. Without a foundation of confidence, learning, retention and thinking may be greatly affected. Positive Restructuring, an organized program for building confidence, is the vehicle that will allow you to accomplish this task in a developmental and organized manner which will ensure greater capacity and motivation for learning.
As teachers, you face problems everyday with children who are resistant, unmotivated, have fears of failure, avoid handing in work, are unwilling to participate and so on. Many times, these students’ symptoms are treated instead of the reasons why such behavior exists. Furthermore, the real cause of these symptoms is a lack of confidence in his/her ability. When children lack this foundation of confidence, numerous secondary symptoms occur, causing great strain on their self esteem and the patience of teachers.
Teachers are well aware of how great the classroom environment is for those children who have a sense of confidence. They participate, are motivated, have positive outlooks, willing to venture out, willingness to try new things, and enjoy doing their work and learn. However, one must ask what the difference is and in many cases it is nothing more than the perception of low confidence verses the perception of high confidence. Since perception almost always determines behavior, changing one’s confidence will change one’s perception and therefore increases the likelihood of changing behavioral outcomes.
Many educators have not been provided with a clear understanding of why children do what they do and what to do when they do it. Confidence building is too crucial to leave it up to trial and error. This series will assist every teacher in this crucial task Building confidence in children should be the first responsibility of every teacher, since very little can take place without it. Such responsibility requires a complete understanding of all the pitfalls and options available. This series will provide that need.
Series II Links:
Step 7 - Success Bank Account
Series I - Step-by-Step Guide to Setting up Your Classroom:
Series I Links:
Part I - What to do Before the Start of School - Site Visitor Example
Part II - Important Meetings and Communication With Parents and Staff Member - Members Only (Login Required)
Part III- Designing Your Classroom - Members Only (Login Required)
Part IV- Factors Affecting Curriculum for Children with Special Needs - Members Only (Login Required)
Part V- Adapting Curriculum for Students with Special Needs-Overview - Members Only (Login Required)
Part VI- Adapting Curriculum for Students with Specific Disabilities - (Login Required)
Part VII- How to Conduct Effective Parent Conferences - (Login Required)
Part VIII- Grading Students with Special Needs - (Login Required)
Part IX - Reporting Student Progress to Parents - (Login Required)
Part X - Developing Educational Treatment Plans for your Students - (Login Required)
Part XI - End of School Year Responsibilities - Login Required)