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June 28th, 2009

ancntdrgn @ 04:56 pm: IEP Pro
I was newly hired for a charter-school type place that uses IEP Pro online and I have no clue about this program. I tried to gain some knowledge from the internet and it didn't have interactives (unless buying the program counts). I will get some training but the lead teacher told me the sped gal has been working on it for three years and is just now getting a handle on it. I'm worried. Can anyone give me more information so I don't walk in there totally unknowing. Thank in advance for ANY help!

June 25th, 2009

ezmerelda77 @ 06:56 pm: SPED mental health

I have been teaching 0-5yo SPED for nine years and recently realized my dream of combining mental health services with special education.  


I guess I am interested in something very specific; my interest lies in the correlation between having a disability and depression.  This past year I was blessed to be able to get some mental health services for one of my student and through our combined effort, we were able to help one of my students make significant progress, (was testing in the 8th percentile coming in and left in the 75%) When he first started he told me he could not, when he left he was showing me his work with pride.


Does anybody know of any graduate school programs in this field?  Has anybody made the transition from teacher to counselor?  I am willing to pack it all up and move anywhere for a program that seems to meet my desires. 


I guess I am looking for a child/infant mental health programs that incorporate atypical development. 

June 18th, 2009

nytogagirl4life @ 07:10 pm: jobs!
I am looking for a elementary special education job. Either teacher or resource room. I am willing to more! Let me know if you have any options for me! I was laid off from my job, and am not sure if I will be called back!

June 9th, 2009

estarsign @ 07:36 pm: Out of curiousity...
Where do you teach, and what do the phrases "gray area kid" "gap kid" or "tweener" mean in your state/district?

Current Mood: frustrated
Current Music: television

June 5th, 2009

musicnut2004 @ 03:10 pm: My Dream: Loved No Less

Please take a look at the e-mail I wrote to the coordinator of Do Something that details my dream.  If you have any input or are not familiar with the organization, please visit www.dosomething.org to find out more! E-mail me at erinrbreedlove@yahoo.com with your thoughts or just comment here.  :)

Thanks for reading!

x-posted to musicnut2004My Dream: Loved No LessCollapse )

June 1st, 2009

estarsign @ 07:13 pm: Signing NO on the MET
I just had a MET and IEP today for a child who was ECDD (Early childhood developmentally delayed) and that the psychologist wants to exit entirely from special education. I signed NO on the MET, and the parent did as well. Additionally, the parent signed NO on the non eligible IEP.

Has anyone else had this happen? Does anyone have an idea of what happens from that point?

Current Mood: curious
Current Music: television

May 26th, 2009

brihanon @ 08:13 am: I have an interview with a local school system (Virginia) for a hearing impaired opening. It is itinerant. and I'll be interviewed by a panel. I have a BS in speech and hearing, an MEd in Special education and have had the opportunity to teach HI as a sub recently as well as work with HI and Deaf students through out my 23 years as a special educator.

Any suggestions for preparation? I'm already brushing up on my signing skills. I really would like to get back to teaching.

Thanks in advance.

May 25th, 2009

faerykat @ 05:17 pm: ABA teacher looking for new direction
Hi all,

I've been a long-time lurker here and I generally read and respond to entries without posting my own, but I thought maybe the wonderful people here could help me. I'm currently a teacher in an ABA school but I'm looking to change paths a bit, having concluded that managing a classroom and working 1:1 with students at the same time isn't really something I'm enjoying. I'm looking for some new options now. Some things I'm considering are early intervention, home-based programming, and clinical settings. I'm also looking for positions that might include advocacy for the ASD population, writing, or training of staff. My difficulty is that I've always been focused on the classroom teaching environment and so I don't really know what other options there are. For the sake of specificity, here's a little bit about me and my experience (without just parroting my resume!):

-I'm 25 years old and live in New York City
-I've been involved in the field for about 5 years now
-I have a Master's Degree in ABA and teaching certification
-I've worked with kids on the spectrum ages 3-13
-I'm very interested in getting involved in EI or preschool
-I'm also interested in doing some work with adults
-I've done research in the past, as part of my graduate work

Can anyone make any suggestions to me about arenas I might want to explore? Any help would be greatly appreciated!


(x-posted to autism, teaching_autism, and teaching_sp_ed)

April 22nd, 2009

kohakushinju @ 08:18 pm: I'm about to get my associates and going on to bachelor's in special ed but HOW can I get my foot in the door early. I need help!!!

April 13th, 2009

techaddict @ 10:07 pm: I teach students with mild/moderate intellectual disabilities (or whatever the label is this year). One objective in Social Studies 2 (high school curriculum) is that the learner will "Identify individual disability and education, rehabilitation, medical, and social terminology associated with it."

I am going to introduce this by going over the top of an IEP form where all the labels/categories are listed, and teaching about the different disabilities. The only thing is... how can I explain intellectual disabilities... to students who are intellectually disabled? Without basically telling them that they fall into that category due to IQ scores and such?

From talking with my coworkers, when the course has been taught before, this objective has been met by basically stating "you have an IEP" and leaving it at that. However, I did a pre-unit survey that was confidential, and over half my class answered "no" to the question "do you have a disability?" They also didn't identify any disabilities that weren't physical - for example, they knew about people who use wheelchairs and those who are blind, etc., but didn't say anything about learning or emotional disabilities.

Any suggestions on how to "define" ID for students with ID are sooooooooooo welcome.

April 8th, 2009

francisbmewbly @ 06:52 am: Study aids for the TExES
This is for those of you in Texas:
I am getting my alt certification, and I need a good study book for the TExES Special Ed EC-12 exam.  There are a lot for the gen ed exam, but only a few for SpEd, and from what I can tell, the ones I've viewed on Amazon haven't gotten good reviews.  Any suggestions?
I'm thinking about just using this, but there are absolutely no comments on it.

I'm going to take both tests, btw; Gen ed EC-4 and SpEd EC-12.

April 2nd, 2009

cyph0r @ 05:39 pm: comprehension checks and strategies for an autistic student
I am a para and currently in college to be a special ed. teacher. I have an autistic student in an moderate ID class who is reading at grade level (2nd). All year I have been trying to tell the teacher that he may not be comprehending what he reads. Whenever the teacher asks him to tell her what he had just read, he simply echos back her question. She has finally asked me to come up with a plan to work with him on comprehension for 45minutes a day.

What would be the best way to check if he really does have comprehension? I see that verbally asking him the question is not working. Should I use pictures? He is not really writing yet either (but he copies sentences as part of his OT goals).

If there really is a lack of comprehension, what strategies would work for students with autism, especially those who are moderate ID as well? I have learned various strategies in school but my degree is in Mild disabilities and I am not sure how to modify them to this level.

Any help, advice, thoughts would be much appreciated. I know it is almost the end of the school year but I am thrilled that I have been given the go ahead to help this student and would love to be able to start immediately after spring break.


March 31st, 2009

assilembob @ 06:18 pm: Trouble getting a behavior plan
A parent is having issues getting the school to listen to her wishes for a behavior plan to be added to her son's IEP. He was diagnosed with Aspergers a little over a year ago, and they got his IEP finally at the first of January. Now, he's been having some anger issues and she wants to curb it quickly. He's 10.
The school says his problems do not warrant a behavior plan, but his case worker thinks it would help, as does the parent.
What should this parent do to get the school to listen and what are her rights? I deal mostly with high school and am very unfamiliar with these early stages of diagnosis, planning and setting up behavior plans and IEP's. I just don't know what to tell her.
(she's a friend of mine...I don't have her kid at all)

I am also curious if there are differences in state laws...I know how things work here in Texas, but she's in Kansas. I have no idea if there are differences in her rights as a parent and his education or if all of that is federal.

hillaroo @ 04:12 pm: Help me out with a discipline scenario, if you don't mind. A is a student of mine with downs sydrome and had more severe behavior problems at the beginning if the school year. He's responded well to reward programs. This past month, his weekly reward was reading the announcements and his monthly was a personal pan pizza party. He had his best month ever, with all of the days being "good" behavior days-- all stars on his progress chart, etc. Except today where he blew it and flipped out, ran away from teachers, ran into the school basement, etc. I was away on a field trip so I know that contributed but the behavior happened when he was with a para in a gen ed class without a sub. Anyway, the gen ed teacher and para are both livid and feel a significant consequence is in order. I took away the pizza party since he didn't in fact have a perfect month. It's not sitting well with me, though. He had a 99 percent perfect month and I feel like its stupid to not acknowledge that. If it were my kid, it would seem unfair that everything was canceled because of one set back, on a day his teacher was absent. What would you guys do?

March 29th, 2009

francisbmewbly @ 01:00 pm: Classroom arrangements
I'm looking for online examples of SpEd classroom arrangements.  I looked on google but couldn't find anything visual, only articles.  Does anyone have any examples?

March 8th, 2009

sunsetsylvia @ 11:00 pm: dyslexia
I am working on a project on dyslexia and am looking for institutions and university departments dealing with therapy and research on dyslexia all over Europe (esp. Eastern Europe).
Google search isn't helping me a whole lot and I wonder if you guys have some suggestions for me.
Thank you very much in advance! :)

March 1st, 2009

sweet_c222 @ 08:18 pm: I am having some trouble. I am getting my Master's in SPED and I have to write a paper and do a presentation on a topic in SPED. I was thinking about doing something about prosthetics and children, but I am not finding a whole lot of articles about that...so I need something else...any suggestions?

Thanks in advance.

michelle_renee @ 08:20 am: X posted Handwriting without tears
Does anyone have the get ready for school Pre K handwriting without tears music CD I can borrow?

Thanks :)

It is an awesome program and one I used when I taught Elementary --oh the magic C!!

elizabeth_1977 @ 02:25 am: New Teacher Discussion Community
Teacher's Nook: http://www.teachersnook.net

Come and help us make the community grow. It's also a way to get additional support and feedback from your colleagues. (You can NEVER have enough of that! Can you?)

***There's a posting section just for special education and gifted and talented teachers!!!

February 26th, 2009

minor_incidents @ 06:14 pm: I'm a special education graduate student and one of my assignments is to interview special ed teachers and ask them these questions:

1.What activities do you assign to your TA?

2.What are the benefits of having a TA?

3.What problems have you encountered with a TA?

I would be eternally grateful to anyone who took the time to answer these. If you could also include what grade levels you teach and what ares of SPED you work in (lifeskills, resource, PPCD). TIA!

February 24th, 2009

dichotomous @ 09:16 pm: PCI's Total Living
Have any of you used PCI's Total Living resource with high school students? If so, what do you think of it?

February 20th, 2009

stress_kitten @ 04:14 pm: Quotes from a professional developement seminar.
And as an icebreaker, they had us say our names, schools, positions, and complete the following:

Being a resource teacher is like...

Here are some of the responses I liked best.

Cut so I don't swamp those with the lj community teaching on their f-list.Collapse )

February 15th, 2009

romanfeatures @ 07:35 pm: x-posted: job search help?
I'm a 7th and 8th grade special education teacher; this is my first year as a teacher and second year at the school (I worked as a teacher's assistant my first year). I am 24 years old and this was my first full-time job after college. I do not have teaching certification but I have begun my graduate coursework towards certification and I do have a conditional certificate, good for the next 3 years. Overall, my job has been a WONDERFUL experience and I love working with the kids every day. My guys are mostly learning disabled, although I also work with a few children diagnosed primarily as emotionally disturbed.

My question is this- the 8-4 schedule that is required for my teaching position is not working for me. It may sound selfish or frivolous, but having to get up at 7 every day is impacting my relationships and social life to the point where I have decided to look for a different position at the end of the school year. I realize that most teaching positions will have similar hours, so here is my question:

does anybody have any experience, or any recommendations, with/for jobs that would allow me to work with a similar population (LD/ED kids) and remain in the same or a similar field, but with slightly less demanding hours (basically more of a 9-5 job, irregular hours including night shifts would be fine too).

I would ideally like to return to teaching when I an older and more settled, so I am reluctant to leave the field entirely. However, it's just not a good fit for me right now. I appreciate any suggestions!

Thank you so much!

February 8th, 2009

captainswab @ 05:31 pm: numbers in your class
I've been teaching SDC in california for 5 years. It a mild/moderate, elementary self contained class with kids that range in disabilities from mild mental retardation, emotional disturbances, autism, specific learning disability, and tramatic brain injury.

I'm curious as to how many kid you have, what grade level you teach, and how many aide hours you have.

I currently have 20 kids and have a 4 hour aide. I've never had this many students before. The psych who has been with the ditrict for 25 years says they have never had a class my size before the entire time he has been there.

I'm just wondering how it is elsewhere.

January 29th, 2009

makeitstopjamie @ 07:42 pm: Infants and Toddlers with Disabities?
I've lurking in this community for awhile, but this is my first time posting. I'm a senior at Ohio State studying to become an Early Childhood Intervention Specialist with one quarter left before student teaching. In my methods class we have to design an environment for infants, toddlers, or preschoolers with special needs. My goal is to work with infants and toddlers (I have to obtain another certification to do that), so I'd like for my environment to be geared for that age level. My only problem is that I'm not really sure what should be included for that age level, particularly what disabilities would be present in this population.

Has anyone here worked with infants or toddlers with disabilities and would be willing to help me out? I would really like to know about what disabilities and what the developmental levels might be at that age. I'm kinda clueless as to what children are served at that age. I know that there would probably be some Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and other orthopedic impairments, and premature babies (I believe that several kids in the preschool class I'm in are there for that reason. I'd like to know if I should include an area for naps and what type of outdoor area I should include (my instructor said she would like to see one).

Thanks for any help you can give! I might go and do preschool age because it's easiest, but this is something I'm curious about.

January 12th, 2009

stress_kitten @ 03:29 pm: Looking for Resource Recommendations.
My program has $2500 to spend in the next month on Math supplies.

What resources have you found to be extremely valuable and HIGH INTEREST for grades 8-12 students who generally have a grade 4 reading ability?

This is a pre-employment program with a lot of learning disabilities and at-risk students. Real life skills and tie-ins are extremely important. It is also a Canadian classroom, so something a little more generic and a little less US-centric would be preferable.

January 6th, 2009

stress_kitten @ 01:48 pm: Hello and Help!

About Me: I'm a 29 year old young mother with a Bachelor of Education (minors: English, History, Learning Disabilities). I've worked on a 6 month contract as a Resource teacher at the grd 4-7 level, taught Business Ed and Cooking for 3 months at the grd 10 level, and am currently working part time in a grd 8-9-10 pre-employment program until the end of the year.

And I am really, really struggling.

About the situation: The class I stepped into was pretty messy. The teacher I'm job sharing with has taken on some union work and so has been released from two of her blocks (school follows a day 1 - day 2 schedule... I take the first two blocks in the morning of Day 1). She started doing this in October, and so had subs coming in those mornings, then they posted the position. It was filled by a retired/retiring teacher who taught it for one week then quit. Kids were back to having a sub. Then I was hired... I think I was the only one who applied. So the kids have had no stability for quite some time, and these are kids who really require structure. There is one Educational Aid in the room (and 12 kids). The students have issues ranging from reasonably high functioning Autism, to severe LD, to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, to Tourettes, to ODD, to mixtures of the above.

I have been trying to forge relationships with these kids, but it's been hard going. My EA informed me I am making a mess of it, which was disheartening. Part of the problem is that I've been trained as a classroom teacher... and most of my classroom management strategies - which work well even on "tough" classes - don't work here, because it would appear the goals are different. I've been trying to learn from watching how the EA interacts with the kids, but I'm missing some vital piece to the puzzle, because behaviours that she and my teaching partner address at one time, they ignore at another. And I know there's a rhyme and reason to it, I just haven't figured out the code.

I am teaching Social Studies and Math to them, and the other problem I've run into (which is a big one, because when we're dealing with it their behaviour TANKS) is that many of them have only a minimal mathematical understanding. As in, can't round, can't do simple word problems, don't understand multiplication. Now, I can teach that without a problem, but they are really, REALLY resistant to doing any work on it because it's "baby stuff we've already done" (but they CAN'T!) and they have a frustration threshold of, ultimately, zero.

TL;DR - I'm trying to teach really low high-school juniors with varying learning disabilities survival mathematics... what can I do to make teaching/learning basic math concepts not seem like a "childish" thing and thereby save their dignity?

December 26th, 2008

sebilj0002 @ 10:03 pm: On my way to a special ed. degree
Hey everyone!

My name is Sarah, I am about 2 years from completing my special ed. degree and am just looking for any help/advice.  I would LOVE to work with Autistic children.  I have 3 cousins (all in the same family) who are Autistic and work in an after school program as a special needs para (most of the kids I work with are Autistic).   If anyone has any advice etc. it is greatly appreciated!

Thanks so much!

blackswan1983 @ 07:21 pm: SDC versus Resource Room
Hi Everybody,
I am thinking about changing from my position as a resource teacher ( I work with kids with learning disabilites, etc. that just need some extra "tutoring" type help but stay in a regular classroom all day) to a special day class teacher. I currently am a case carrier, as well as a teacher, so I know all about the paperwork, etc.

I did my student teaching in general ed. first grade, and I miss it terribly. I want a class of my own! I want to make materials, and teach music and art, and pe (I know we aren't supposed to, but I always found a way to sneak it in!) I want to walk my kids to lunch, and be with them for the entire day.

My question is, what is it like to teach in a special day class? Having done resource and general ed. and liking them both, I hope that I also enjoy special day. I see it as the perfect combination of the two.

My worst nightmare though is that I will lose all of the freedom I have as a resource teacher (I make my own schedule, go to the bathroom whenever I want, etc.) and maybe I won't be able to teach the kids at all, because they will be so low. I want to teach mild to moderate, by the way, but I know that usually when I send a kid into special day from RSP, it is because they are not making any progress. Will those same kids make progress in the SDC class? Will I be able to teach them?

I really want to make the switch, but I am also terrified because it means giving something up. So, any information you can share is really appreciated.

I also will be arranging to observe a lot in the SDC class at one of the schools I work at. It is exactly what I want to teach, an SDC with mild to moderate level students in grades 1 to 3. It is funny because that teacher really wants to go into RSP! Maybe we can arrange it so we just switch, who knows. That would be good!

December 12th, 2008

vintagegirlnh @ 06:22 pm: Does anyone know where I can find or purchase a pdf of this book http://books.google.com/books?id=DLTo8IoqV0EC&q=work+in+progress+autism&dq=work+in+progress+autism&pgis=1? It's only available for sale online and my coworker needs it by Monday (she's interviewing for a job and wants to go over ABA/DTT therapy before her interview, I told her to get this book and now we can't find it). They don't have it in store at Barnes and Noble because it's over $40 and considered an academic book. We've tried local libraries and there's been no luck there either. Any ideas would be helpful! Thank you!

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