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Working with IEPs in an Inclusive Classroom

Friday, April 01, 2016 | 12:00 AM

One of the best ways to ensure that all students in inclusive classrooms have the best tools and opportunities to learn the material is the use of Individualized Education Programs. These plans can help teachers differentiate learning for all students at all levels within their classrooms. It also gives students and parents the tools to work together with teachers to provide the best education.

Individuals learning together

Individualized Education Programs address individual students in order to meet their needs based on their learning styles and physical or mental disabilities. Teachers work with students and parents to create a plan that will work for an individual student while meeting the concerns and needs of all parties. This can sometimes require extra work from special education teachers, especially when working in an inclusive classroom with more than one program. In the end, however, the use of the programs helps the teacher guide the education of all students in such a way that all are learning at their full potential.

Making the most of the lesson plan

Teachers may find an Individualized Education Program overwhelming when they first encounter them, but, it is often true that entire lesson plans do not need alteration in order for students with disabilities to benefit. Sometimes assistive technology is sufficient to ensure that a student has the tools he or she needs to learn effectively. In other circumstances, individual lessons or reviews will better help students with Individualized Education Programs. In either case, a careful review of the programs in an inclusive classroom will help teachers make the best choices regarding lessons and instruction.

Taking the next step

Another way teachers can effectively implement Individualized Education Programs is by taking classes in special education. A college course, advanced degree or even a certification in special education will give teachers the most up-to-date information on current trends, methods and techniques for an inclusive classroom. With this knowledge, teachers may better grasp how to write, understand, and administer Individualized Education Programs within their own classrooms.

Inclusive classrooms are more prevalent than they used to be. Teachers may face many more learning styles, ability levels, and learning disabilities than they have before. Individualized Education Programs help teachers maximize the effectiveness of their teaching and the tools at their disposal so that all students can work to their potential and learn in a comfortable environment.

Learn about University of Texas Rio Grande Valley online M.Ed. in Special Education program.


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