Sunday, December 13, 2009

Article 4 and 5

Based on Article #4 and #5:
The disproportionate representation of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse children in special education is a significant issue in education. After reviewing the article:
List some of the issues surrounding this topic?
-Discrimination seems to be one of the biggest components surrounding this issues.
-disproportionate representation
-"The overrepresentation of ethnic and linguistic minorities in special education has resulted in several well known court cases".

Discuss how legislation has attempted to ameliorate this problem
there were amendments made in 1997 to IDEA...states need to collect data for the purpose of monitoring and reducing disproportionality...

Describe the problem as you see it
Make a suggestion…What is the solution as you see it?
This quote is the easiest way for my to get my point across: "the unequal opportunities for many students of color because of the consequences of structural poverty and the discriminatory treatment of students of color in the general education system".
The solution would be as easy as to treat everyone equally. However, it's unfortunate that some racial and ethnic groups a being over identified for special education just because of their ethnicity.
To me the easiest solution would be is to allow everyone and anyone into the regular education class, have the teacher track everyone's progress, and then from there make the fair and appropriate recommendations. However, I know this is what I would do doesn't mean everyone would do this.

This topic is hard to me to discuss. I'm not sure completely why. Maybe it's because I find it hard that people are discriminated against just because of what they look like or who they are. To me everyone should always be treated equally and even though I know it hasn't always happen in our history I would like to think that people are being treated equally now. No one should ever been marked or labeled anything just because of their ethnic or racial background.

Acticle 3

Based on Article #3:
How has the evolution of medical technology changed the way we look at disabilities?
I think with the new medical technology we now look at disabilities as they should be looked at. Before it seemed like those with disabilities were looked at as if they couldn't be helped and were just going to have to go through their lives like this. However, with the new technology, we see disabilities as something that can be helped, that are biological and genetic, and with the proper care and treatment the individual will be able to be helped.
It's a big change because we are now looking at disabilities in a scientific way and in the medical way because disabilities have a large medical component to them.

What implications will this new outlook have on teaching and mandated legislation?
I think it will lead to teachers having to understand how the brain works and how the brain is affected by the disability. Teachers are going to need to be more on top of each student and get them into earlier testing when a disability is suspected. Also, the RtI that is state mandated may actually be mandated to be put in place.

Modules 1-2

Based on articles #1 and #2:
What are the social and mental implications for children with learning disabilities?
It seems that those with learning disabilities are more likely to suffer for depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation and attempts (also completion), along with disruptive behavior in the classroom. Children with learning disabilities are more likely to suffer from these due to lack of self esteem and boredom in the classroom from not understanding what is truly being taught.

Think back to when you were in school. What strategies do you remember teachers using (academic or behavioral). Think about how a child with a Learning Disability would respond to these strategies. Explain and comment.
Honestly it's horrible to say but there isn't anything that really sticks out in my mind of what a teacher I had used to help us learn. I know that if we acted out we were punished by detentions and having to meet with the principle. Sadly this is really all I remember. I think we were threatened a lot with detentions, suspensions and removal. However, I look at things now days and I always think to myself about how I never remember seeing TSS clients in my classrooms or hearing of alternative education programs. Maybe this is why I think that when I was in school not a whole lot was done. It really seems like it is of the new coming trend.

How will you refine your practices to address the social needs of students with disabilities?
I truly believe every student can be taught and most need to be taught in different ways because everyone learns differently. With my practices I think a big part of it will be making sure I have enough time meet with each student individually so I can see the progress they are making. I will also make sure that I keep documentation of the student and what is going on that way I can get them proper help. It's easy to sit here and type out what I think I would do, but it's not until I actually get in that situation that I know what I really need to do.

Online articles 12-13-09

Here is the first part of my blog for this week. This is the online articles. and I hope I read the right articles because my computer took me to different sites I think!!

How Children learn to read:
When I began reading this article, I found this beginning part to be every important: "To learn to read well, children need the blocks of knowing the sounds of letters and the blocks of knowing the meanings of words (vocabulary), word parts (grammatical markers) and groups of words (overall meaning or semantics)" (Coordinated Campaign for Learning Disabilities). All children need to know the building blocks to reading otherwise they are going to struggle with reading for the majority of their school careers and beyond. Learning to read was a hard thing for me when I was in elementary school. I remember that they would break us up in to three separate reading groups. These groups were determined by how we read. I was in the middle group, but I can tell you to this day I wanted to be in the highest reading group and it lowered my self esteem knowing that I wasn't in the group and that even though no matter how hard I tried, I wasn't going to get moved into that group. I feel that somewhere along the lines, my reading skills became not up to the highest standards. Maybe it was from changing elementary school when I was little.

I also like how the article brought up the point of how parents should be meeting with their children's teachers to see their teaching style and what methods the teacher is using and also to examine the work their child is being given by their teacher. This is something I think parents over look. I think that parents, at times, let things go because they assume all teachers are doing their jobs properly and their child is learn correctly and is not having problems. I look at my job and even though I'm a teacher for an after school program through Sarah Reed Children's Center, it is my job to do each child's homework with them from their regular school and to make sure it is done appropriately, I at times look at that and think to myself...I do homework everyday with children that are not mine and I bet I know more about their learning disabilities than their parents do because their homework is getting done with me. I think if more parents were to sit down and do their homework with their children they would have more insight on what their children are struggling with and where they are excelling.

From the rest of the article the two most important points I liked was that each child needs and effective reading program and that parents can find signs of early learning disabilities if they try. I liked the effective reading program idea because it speaks about six different components that are important with reading. I also like how it stress certain parts of reading that are essential in making sure the child becomes a fluent reader.

Reading and Dyslexia:
The multimedia I selected was reading and the brain. First I want to say that I really enjoyed this part of the homework. I liked the watching the video and hearing first hand from the parent, child, and the doctor. OK, so for my reactions... I think it's amazing how much technology we have now days to do things like what this clip showed. We can actually get an fMRI of a child's brain who has dyslexia. From this fMRI, we can see which hemispheres of the brain are doing what, when, and why. In the clip it said that the "normal readers" left hemisphere light up more when reading where as those with dyslexia, their left hemisphere don't light up as much. It was also interesting to hear that dyslexia is biologically based. I think this clip was very informative and I really enjoyed it.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Homework for 12-9

What did you experience and how did you feel as you tried the simulations?
I felt very annoyed when I was trying the simulations. My annoyed feelings came from the fact that I wasn't able to concentrate during the attention part because there was some much fading in and out during the reading part and too much talking going on when the teacher was giving directions in the other parts. For the reading part, it was frustrating to try and decode a passage when I didn't even know where to begin and what letters were really suppose to be what and even with the key I felt completely lost. However, in the memory part it I felt pushed to finishing reading because the lines were disappearing and I caught myself just skimming the reading just so I would finish. So, when it came time to do the questions, I got one answer right because I guessed on everything. The writing part I had no idea what I was doing or what I was suppose to do. Even with the directions I was just confused. The math part was probably the worst for me because I have always struggled in math. The spacial part and the sequencing part was about the worst.

What insights did the simulations give you into the experiences of students with learning disabilities in that particular area?
Overall, I felt horrible. Here I am complaining about how annoying and frustrating these simulations were and I don't even have this type of learning disability. There are children out there, everywhere, that have learning disabilities and I can't even imagine what it's really like to go through that everyday. A good majority of the students out there with learning disabilities aren't even being attended to.
What I got out of this activity is something that I really needed. I needed to know what it was like to have a glimpse at what it feels like to have a learning disability. To be just mildly frustrated and annoyed during these activities was a good experience. I knew before that children with disabilities have anger and frustration issues, but now after this, I can tell that student, "it's okay to be frustrated and annoyed with what you're going through, but I need to help you and we can get through this together."

What implications for teaching do the simulations have?
I think there was really good insight on how to help and teach these types of children properly. Even though they were just short simulations, with doing the activities and listening to the recordings, I think that each individual area gave its own insight onto what it's like and what it feels like. It also gave me an idea of what strategies to use and not use in the classroom. It gave me a better understand of each of the learning disabilities.