Thursday, October 02, 2008

October is Special Education Month in Jefferson

Where is the best place to start making a difference in special education but in my own school. Just to share with you...

We’re celebrating Special Education Month here at Jefferson from October 1 – October 31, 2008; our theme will be “Together We Shine”.

We, in the Special Education Department, would like to take this opportunity to promote awareness about diversity among students and to let you know how we can learn more about them and how we can support their special needs. Our school is participating in the following activities this month:

- Teacher- Parent Free Training & Workshop: “Why Does My Child Do This?” = for parents who wish to learn more about special needs and behaviors and what cause them; (details to follow)

- Professional Development Sessions for Teachers: “Together We Shine” = for us teachers to learn more on our roles in the IEP process, Principal Patton and the Special Educators assigned to your grade level team will meet with Regular Educators on how to differentiate instruction, work in an inclusion setting, behavior management, etc,…

- Weekly email articles and video clips on Special Education = expand knowledge about special education and special needs children, coming to your inbox every weekend.
Yesterday, the 1st day of October, I brought my students to The Classroom of the Future and we held our math classes there. I wrote our mentors afterwards:
Hi Dr. Collins and Ms. Domingo,

I am truly thankful for your support and assistance this morning during my students' interactive session in our Classroom of the Future. It was their first time to see the place and to use the Interactiv White Board first hand. They were very very excited most especially when we asked two of my students to present, you can never tell their disability when they were engaged and showing their best. They felt very successful afterwards.

I forgot to tell you that this month of October, we are celebrating Special Education Month here at Jefferson. This technology initiative that we are doing for the students with special needs at Jefferson is aligned with our theme: "Together We Shine".

Research proves that technology is a great accomodation and modification for our special needs students. As with other students, computers can help our students with special learning needs to find, explore, analyze, exchange, and present information. Technology enhances their creativity and helps them become independent learners. Their confidence increases and their social skills are enhanced alongside the development of their technology skills. We have seen that happen this morning. I am truly grateful to you, Dr. Collins and Ms. Domingo.

Dr. Collins emailed his reply tonight:
Mrs. Angala,

First, let me thank you for the role you have taken at Jefferson Middle School in your continued effort to provide every opportunity possible to empower and engage your students through powerful technology. I could not have been more pleased. What we were able to do yesterday confirmed last Wednesday's expectations after our session on the Activboard, that students would be excited, engaged, motivated and happy to have a mix of both textbook and technology resources to learn with. They were really excited and felt so proud to have an opportunity to come up front, put on the microphone and hear themselves lead the group through a problem. I really enjoyed our team approach and look forward to continuing this effort next week. Take care.

PS: We want you to be the first among others to get an Activboard placed in your classroom so that you can really show what students are capable of accomplishing.

Dr. JCollins
I am also grateful to my principal for her full support. I can't wait to share this to the parents of my students tomorrow.


Chloe Wiley said...

Hi Ms. Angala- my name is Chloe Wiley. I am a former third grade teacher from Louisiana. Currently I am in graduate journalism school at Northwestern- here in DC this fall as the education reporter for our national news wire service. I just saw your post and would love to do a feature piece on your school's celebration of Special Education month. Please let me know if you are interested, regardless- I'd love to chat. Shoot me an email when you get a chance-
Thanks so much! I look forward to speaking with you- and good luck- it sounds great!

ms.angala said...

Hi Chloe,

Thanks for dropping by my blog, where I share my experiences and resources in special education to my colleagues across the globe.

Great to hear of your interest in our school's Special Education Month. I talked to my principal about your intent and she gave her permission. How do you plan to do your feature piece? Interviews, visit...? In any case, please let me know beforehand. We're excited.


Promethean Planet


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