How to Support Students with Special Educational Needs

How to Support Students with Special Educational Needs
Students with special educational needs (SEN) are different from their learning peers. And this difference does not arise solely on account of their disabilities.
They may also showcase distinct educational attainment potentials. This means that they might be able to learn some things more easily than their non-SEN friends. A few concepts, however, can prove more challenging for them to tackle – which are not problematic for regular students.

Working with Special Educational Needs Students

Supporting special-needs learners requires an intimate understanding of their unique psychological, emotional and physical circumstances. And once these issues are correctly identified, it becomes essential for them to be actively & constantly addressed.
In this Cox Internet compiled blogpost, I’ll talk about the various school-based strategies that can be implemented to help SEN learners. These have been gleaned from a variety of textbooks pertaining to the subject, as well as my own teaching experiences.
As an SEN-trained tutor, I give a lot of importance to standardized teaching techniques in my work. These are the ones that you also commonly find listed in government authorized disability documents.
But I have learned that theoretical teaching models can only get you so far. Teachers need to adopt a more hands-on approach when dealing with their SEN students. Because attempting to make do with a ‘one size, fits all’ approach can result in more classroom friction than resolution.
As you go through each of these points, please bear your unique classroom and SEN learner dynamics in mind. And tailor their prescriptions accordingly – for effective and practical applications.

- Set Up an Inclusive School Setup

As their name implies, Inclusive Schools are universally-welcoming academic environments. In these setups, students of every age, gender, socioeconomic background and disability status are treated equally.
SEN students, in particular, are provided with the same access to school resources as their non-disadvantaged peers. They are included in standard classroom activities as other students, and are usually met with the same round of expectations. What this approach does is that it relieves SEN learners of any budding psychological complexes. It instills them with the confidence needed to handle complex human relationships later on in life.
Inclusive schools, in other words, provide SEN learners with a close snap-shot of everyday reality, and the kinds of people they are likely to encounter. They teach them how to wear their disabilities as badges of honor, and not as personal cages that invite pity.
By the same token, these schools impart other students with important lessons in understanding, inclusivity and empathy. They help to normalize interactions with their SEN classmates, making way for the formation of comfortable friendships and social situations.
As such, the socially-geared advantages of inclusive environments are hard to beat. Particularly when they’re compared with the benefits offered by standard schools and isolation (home-based) learning approaches.

- Train Teachers in accordance with SEN Learner Requirements

Like all teachers, tutors tasked with handling SEN learners require specialized training. This entails getting them up-to-speed with the latest field teaching (pedagogical) methodologies. These are research-based approaches designed for more effective knowledgeable instruction.
In addition, teachers need to maintain accurate assessment profiles of SEN students. These should be shared with child development and occupational therapists to design tailor-made learning curriculum. An important part of devising these teaching blueprints involves questioning SEN learners regarding their needs and aspirations directly. This step also helps to develop student-tutor rapport.
When dealing with particularly demanding special-needs cases, teachers should keep child development specialists in the loop. Inclusive schools have these experts available on their payrolls. But in case they’re not directly approachable, weekly consultancy sessions can also prove insightful.SEN tutors need to encourage classroom interactions between disabled students and their peers. Open and honest conversations, conducted with a modicum of understanding and decency, are therapeutic. They aid SEN learners to open up with others, and express their feelings without any threat of censure.During these ‘free socializing’ sessions, all instances of student bullying and verbal contention have to be guarded against. As such, it is the job of the teacher to ensure that a comfortable in-class learning atmosphere is sustained at all times.

- Conduct Regular Parent & Peer Counselling Sessions

The parents and peers of SEN students need to be counseled as well, in addition to teachers and school administrative staffs. This is best done by conducting separate advisory sessions moderated by expert therapists and disability trainers.
Parents need to learn how to correctly cater to the domestic and other needs of their SEN children in ways that facilitate their classroom learning. Schoolmates and friends of SEN students, similarly, need to learn how to interact with them appropriately.
Special-needs children (as it isn’t difficult to imagine) harbor a particular emotional sensitivity with regard to their condition. Because of this, they can experience psychological trauma more easily than their non-disabled peers. Appropriate sensitivity training can prove highly useful in offsetting this risk.

- Invest In Appropriate Disability Equipment And Infrastructure

Disability infrastructure in school settings includes the appropriate placement of wheelchair ramps and stability handles. These should be placed liberally in every school location, particularly alongside stairs, within bathrooms, and in playgrounds.
The aim of providing these aids is to offer not only physical support, but also to ensure SEN learner participation in all school activities.With proper mechanical supports in place, SEN learners don’t get to feel left out. And this incorporation can oftentimes spell the difference between their achieving considerable educational success, and failure.

The Importance of Organic SEN Learner Engagement

Other than the physical implements mentioned, what special-needs children require most from their teachers, peers and parents is understanding. This understanding makes way for comfortable expressions, and a sincere interest in the learning activities conducted.If you’re interested in pursuing this topic further, consider subscribing to an Xfinity Basic Cable Packages internet subscription. Check out the British Council and local education board web portals to gain access to some incredible SEN teaching resources.

About The Author

Stephen N. Mills is an entrepreneur, marketer, and writer. As San Francisco resident, he loves reading books and writing on different topics like SEO, Branding, Health and etc. That's where he finds his inspiration to author in-depth guides that teach E-commerce store owners ways to manage, grow and scale their business. In a former life, Stephen co-founded a custom menswear company which generates 6-figures in annual revenue through its website and retail
Next Post »