An essential component of being a special educator is adapting lessons and making accommodations for students who are performing below grade level, while still aligning to the state curriculum standards. Meeting the students’ needs is more than simplifying the lesson or teaching on a lower grade level; it is about teaching to each child’s unique strengths rather than their weaknesses.
Read the scenario below to inform the assignment that follows:
Imagine you are a resource ELA teacher for fifth graders. Your resource class consists of nine students who are reading 2-3 grade levels below their peers.
Three of your students have specific learning disabilities in the area of reading; one has been diagnosed with ASD, and two have emotional and behavioral disorders which affect their academics in all areas. Two students have mild intellectual disabilities and one student is a speech and language impaired student who is struggling with reading.
One student was retained and is repeating fifth grade, and one is a new student whose records have not yet arrived, but reports this is his second time in fifth grade.
All of your students are decoding and comprehending at approximately a second to third grade reading level. All attend general education classes for at least part of the day. Eight of the nine students are males who show an interest in science and nonfiction texts, while your female student considers herself to be a fairy princess, she adores Disney, and she detests all the topics the other students love.
Review Appendix B of the Common Core Standards and select a fifth-grade exemplar informational text.
Using the “COE Lesson Plan Template,” create a lesson plan designed to meet the specific needs of the students in your class that enhances language development and communication skills, and incorporates: