My goal is to create a classroom environment that fosters respect and responsibility, two important aspects of encouraging growth and learning. In order to assist my students as they begin their transition to becoming accountable and independent citizens, I will encourage students to make responsible decisions throughout the school day. I will provide students opportunities to make decisions about how they will learn, as well as, provide them with chances to share their thoughts and opinions. The management strategies I put to use in my classroom foster respect within the classroom, as well. I use what is called a "social conference" in order to solve any problems that may arise in the classroom. This strategy involves the cooperation of both student and teacher to find the source of a problem and logical solution to solve it.
I am a strong believer in providing students with a mixture of classroom experiences, including learning through exploration, self-discovery, and cooperative group work. My students will be provided with a variety of learning situations, including group work, partner work, and whole group discussions and explorations. To encourage group work and collaboration, students will be seated at their desks in groups. Students will have many opportunities to work with their classmates including projects, experiments and literacy circles. I want students to learn how to work with others, how to share their thoughts and ideas, and to realize how learning can happen in a variety of ways.
The purpose of a self-contained program is to provide students with the least restrictive educational setting for the development of academic and social skills, as well as the emotional security to foster positive development in the classroom. The class has a structured learning environment that addresses the full range of all students' learning styles.
The curriculum is similar or related to the curriculum content and skill development of the regular education classrooms. The district curriculum is utilized in all academic areas and is incorporated into the program based on the individual needs of each student as outlined in their IEPs. Students use materials and follow regular classroom curriculum where appropriate. The goal is to create a curriculum that will offer the same level of engagement, meaning and degree of learning; as well as be sensitive to acknowledge the diverse nature of the students as learners, to enhance performance and allow participation in the regular education classroom.
Some modifications to the general curriculum many include modifying instruction, varying instructional groupings, modifying assignments, teaching specific learning skills and strategies, and altering curriculum and materials. These modifications are fused into daily classroom operations and assignments.