The job of a special education teacher is never easy. Most special education teachers have a caseload of students with a wide variety of special needs and the teacher needs to help each one succeed.
Resource Classes for Building Skills
At all educational levels, special education students are mainstreamed into regular education classes. They might spend one class period per day working in a resource hour with their resource teacher. During resource hours, teachers help their students develop skills that will aid them in the regular-education classroom and out in the real world. The teachers also help with test taking skills and some will also read tests to students who need to hear the test questions aloud.
On-Going Lessons to Add Knowledge
In many special education classrooms, teachers like to have an on-going lesson with their children. They like to make the lesson apply to different life skills and curricular areas of study. The on-going lessons need to be related and include ways that build reading, writing, thinking, and problem solving skills. Because so many students with special needs are more likely to give up than regular education students, teachers need to create lessons that are filled with high interest topics.
Try Out The Road to Greatness
One of the most useful books for student in special education is The Road to Greatness. It is an e-book published by Learning Infinity and the book is specifically designed to reach an audience of early and middle-level readers. The book includes small biographies of historically significant people. Children can read the entire book or they can read the individual biographies.
Not Your Average Biographies
Regardless of how special education teachers choose to have their students read the books, there is something that both students and teachers will notice immediately. These biographies are not your average biographies. These fascinating biographies are not about how great each person is, but about all of the struggles that the historical figures had on the road to becoming a great person. Children will quickly be able to identify with these historical figures, especially after they learn that these people had to work hard to overcome disappointments, neglect, disasters, and other issues and tragedies.
Inspirational Books that Cross Curricular Genres
While the books are incredibly inspirational, they also cross over to other genres. Teachers can use the biographies to supplement all curricular areas from music to science, history to math, literature and art. Learning Infinity left no curricular area out and this makes it easy for students to be able to connect the stories in this book to the topics they are learning about in their regular education classes.
Build Reading Skills with Fascinating Topics
Special education teachers can assign the biographies to students so they can practice their reading skills individually. The students can then work on small projects, like posters or booklets so they can share what they learned with the rest of the class. Students can also conduct small research projects about a favorite historical figure to learn more and get even more inspired.
The Road to Greatness is a perfect title to get a class discussion started. Since many students in special education classes need to have practice in the social skills needed for participating in a class discussion, the special education teacher can teach those skills while the children learn more about these fascinating people. Because special education teachers are very skilled in creating a kind community in the classes, students will be comfortable sharing their personal connections to the historical figures, too.
Special education teachers can also use the reading passages for short assessments to watch for growth. The Road to Greatness includes sets of multiple choice questions that can be used to assess how well students understand what they are reading. In the early years of reading, teachers need to keep close tabs on whether the children are growing or falling behind. It is always helpful when publishers include well-written questions that can be used for a wide variety of assessment tasks.
Perfect At-Home Reading
Many elementary school teachers, including the special education teachers, like to send reading materials home with students on a regular basis. Even though The Road to Greatness is an e-book, there are many students who have iPads that they take home. Teachers can assign a passage and small piece of writing or a few questions to answer, too. Parents can monitor their child’s reading and report back to the teacher with a reading log or an online report. It is good practice for any child to read out loud to an adult, so with the iPad and The Road to Greatness, children can read their selected passage to their parents. Many parents have reported that their children will read one passage and then several more because they are so much fun to read.
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