Archive for October, 2011

Selective Mutism — Tips for Helping Teachers Cope with this Anxiety Disorder in the Classroom

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Dealing with selective mutism in the classroom can be quite difficult and frustrating for teachers. In the end, sometimes it seems that a young child with selective mutism is merely acting up by not speaking or participating; and, also, it may be hard to judge just how much the kid has learned when she or he won’t read aloud, etc.

Selective mutism is generally a characteristic of a panic or anxiety disorder, and also the full impact of this disorder is usually not manifested until the child starts school. It is usually in the classroom in which the results of selective mutism are most seriously experienced. Therefore, it is usually the teacher who must deal with, learn to deal with, and fight against this disorder.

Fortunately, there are stuff that teachers can perform to assist deal with selective mutism in the classroom. Below are great tips:

The teacher is quite often center of the very intense symptoms of the kid. Have patience. Understand that there’s a whole other child that exist to understand beneath the shell of selective mutism.

Understand that as a teacher, you are a most integral a part of helping students combat their selective mutism. Be understanding. Realize that the symptoms of selective mutism aren’t intentional, and you therefore shouldn’t get frustrated or angry.

If you think selective mutism, refer both child and also the parents to some health practioner or perhaps a psychologist. Together, they are able to help think of a behaviorally based plan for treatment. This is actually the best method of treating selective mutism.

Work alongside with a speech-language pathologist (SLP). Actually, you (the teacher), the parents, the child, the psychotherapist, and also the SLP are all important areas of the therapy team. Coordinate your actions and interact.

Do not try to force the kid to talk. Obviously, it’s alright to gently encourage the child to talk.

Reward and praise the child for speaking and for participating in the classroom. Rewarding the kid can make him or her feel like a part of the classroom, but more independent at the same time. It can help slowly crack the shell of tension.

A child with selective mutism is most effective to routine and structure.

Keep a predictable structure and ensure that you clearly explain classroom activities. Doing these things can help reduce the unknown and provide the child a sense of structure.

Try to a avoid sudden schedule changes. If you’re planning a change in schedule or perhaps a new activity, provide the children a preview of the expected change.

Although a child with selective mutism might not jump right into a task, he or she might if you do while. It’s easier for him or to join once she or he has observed another children and knows what to do. Assist the child get engaged in the game, and then slowly fade away because he or she becomes more confident.

Assessment from the development and skills of a child with selective mutism can be quite a hardship on the teacher. In the end, it’s tough to judge how well a child can read if the child will not read out loud.

Realize that simply because you’ve seen no signs and symptoms of the child’s ability, it does not meant that he or she is doesn’t understand.

Talk to an SLP to learn about different methods of assessment of a child’s reading abilities.

Some children will point to letters or participate in other nonverbal assessment.

Find out if the kid will allow his or her parents to videotape his or her reading performance at home.

Special Education Para Professionals; Could Your Child Benefit?

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Have you got a young child with autism that you’d like to see put into a normal education classroom, but may need support? Do you consider that the child with PDD needs more support in the classroom, compared to they are currently receiving? This information will be discussing special education paraprofessionals, job descriptions and just how they might be able to support your child inside a regular classroom!

A Para professional is sometimes called an aide or an assistant. They are a person who is educated to help teachers in a classroom. This person isn’t a teacher and can’t teach children, but can assist a very qualified teacher, with academics inside a classroom setting, based on No Child Left Behind. Paraprofessionals might help kids with schoolwork that is taught with a certified teacher or perform other duties in a classroom.

There are two types of these folks in classrooms : those that help all children within the classroom that require extra help (usually known as a classroom Para professional or assistant), along with a Para Professional that works specifically with one child while they are in a classroom (a 1-1 Para professional or assistant) If you feel your son or daughter needs a 1-1 full time assistant to help them within the classroom, ensure that this is designed in your son or daughter’s Individual Educational Plan (IEP). For instance: ____ will have a 1-1 full-time trained Para professional whenever ____ is in the regular classroom setting.

The individual’s with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) states that Para professionals are: consistent with State approved or State licensing requirements. To locate what the licensing requirements have been in your state with this position call your State Department (or Board) of Education. During my State of Illinois a Para professional should have a high school diploma and have completed some college.

If your child includes a specific disability such as autism, you will find the to request additional training for the person that actually works with your child. Be specific inside your request training, for a Para professional that will use your son or daughter. Investigate and discover working out yourself that you simply think could be appropriate, specify the amount of learning your son or daughter’s IEP, in which the training is going to be received, so when the training needs to be completed. For Example: Training for Para professional includes 18 hours of autism conferences (Introduction to Autism Education 8 hours and Introduction to Positive Behavioral Supports and Plans 8 hours) held by our states Parent Training and Information Center (PTIC). Working out will be completed by August the 15 of this year since school will begin on August 17th. School agrees to have a trained Para professional working with my child; and if the person doesn’t complete the training the school agrees to find a trained person to replace the untrained one.

The duties will differ according to the child. Here is a list of some things that they may do:

1. Help child complete academic assignments.
2. Help keep the child focused on school work, and can redirect as needed.
3. Breaks down academic assignments so that the child may comprehend it more.
4. Behave as a writer of assignments, when the child is not able to write.
5. Teach child appropriate social skills, as well as encourage the child to have interaction using their peers.
6. Assist with positive behavioral support for negative behavior.
7. Help with any physical needs that the child has (toileting, help with eating lunch etc).
8. Help child with transitions from activity to activity.
9. Help child when group assignments are given, to enable them to be active participants.

During my 20 years being an educational advocate I’ve met many Para professionals; good quality some not! If you feel your child needs an assistant in order to benefit from the amount then take it up at their next IEP meeting! Good Luck!