Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 12

Running Head: UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

Unique Student Needs


Kelli Murphy
National University

TED 635
Dr. Cathy Lauer
September 13, 2015

Abstract

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

After reading the content standards set for second grade classes, the author
discusses how she would run an educational experience about different
communities: rural, urban, and suburban. Once the learning experience has been
discussed in detail, the author begins to describe how she would differentiate the
learning experience for many different variations of student needs including
culturally diverse students, linguistically diverse students, low achieving students,
students with learning or physical disabilities, and advanced/gifted learners. The
differentiation is something that is done differently for these students which is
separate from the learning experiences that the entire class participates in.

Unique Student Needs

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

In every class that we have taken as prospective teachers, we are told that
every classroom full of students that we will teach we will have students at many
different educational levels, especially being in California where there is a high
percentage of English Language Learners in schools today. With all these different
levels of students education and their different learning preferences, the idea of
one size fits all does not work in the classroom. As a result, differentiated
instruction is very important in order to help the most students to be successful in
the curriculum. Through furniture arrangement, schedules, body language, words
of welcome, rules, consequences, and interaction with the class, the teacher
demonstrates a unique leadership or teaching style to the students. A sense of
community is also achieved through honest, open communication of needs and
feelings among students and their teachers (Eby, Herrell. & Jordan, 2011, p. 115).
It is important that the teacher establishes a good sense of community and builds a
relationship with students where they feel comfortable asking questions,
participating in class, and coming to the teacher for support when needed. It is my
goal to encourage a classroom community where all types and levels of learning is
accepted and encouraged by all members of the classroom. My lesson planning will
also have to be carefully planned out to meet the different learning style and ability
needs of all the students in the class.
Content Standard
I have chosen a second grade social studies content standard from the
California State Board of Education (CSBE) as published in 2000 to demonstrate how
I would differentiate my lesson to accommodate the many needs of all the students.

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

2.2 Students demonstrate map skills by describing the absolute and relative
locations of people, places, and environments.
This content standard covers simple letter-number grid systems of specific locations
and geographic features of a community or neighborhood. It also covers labeling of
a North American continent including the countries, oceans, Great Lakes, major
rivers, and mountain ranges as well as being able to identify the essential map
elements including title, legend, directional indicator, scale, and date. Another
concept is to compare and contrast basic land use in urban, suburban, and rural
environments in California.
Overview of Educational Experience
Each learning experience will start with an introduction to the lesson that
includes the purpose of the lesson along with the expectations of the class and
individuals. Ausubel (1960) proposed that learners can comprehend new material
better when, in advance of the lesson, the teacher provides a clear statement about
the purpose of the lesson and the type of information that learners should look or
listen for (Eby, et al., 2011, pp. 131-132). For the first learning experience, we will
discuss the difference between urban, suburbs, and rural communities. We will start
by all joining on the carpet where we can brainstorm what we know about our
community where we live. I will ask students about things they see in their
community. I am looking for answers like homes, cars, shopping malls, etc. I will
document them on a chart as a mind map or concept web for all students to see as I
mark the items they are telling me. I will explain to them that they live in a suburb
and tell them what makes it a suburb. I will demonstrate to them that there is a
city/urban area, then a suburb, then outside of that is rural. On a different sheet of

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

paper, I will demonstrate this for them by drawing a small sized circle in the middle
of the page and label it Urban. Then I will draw a bigger circle around the Urban
titled circle and label it suburb. Lastly, I will draw another larger circle around the
other 2 circles and label it rural. We will go into more details later, but after that I
will read a book to them.
The book is called Country Kid, City Kid by Julie Cummins. This book describes
the daily life of 2 different kids, Ben and Jody, one of which is from a farm town and
the other is from a big city. It will show the differences between the two to the
students. After we read the book, students will return to their desks. They will be
asked to work with their table groups to come up with differences between what
they saw in the city with Jody and what they saw with the country with Ben. They
will be provided a graphic organizer with the T chart on there with Urban on one
side and rural on the other. I will first do one example of each side with them to
demonstrate. Then I will ask them to give me another example of one of them. After
that, they will work with their groups to complete the rest.
After they have had time to complete with their groups, we will work as a
class together to create a list of characteristics we will find in each of the 3
categories. To help with this, I will show them pictures of each type of community on
the projection screen. For example, I will pull up a view of New York, San Francisco,
and San Diego to show them what different cites look like. Then I will show them a
picture of the suburb they live in, and examples of other suburbs. Lastly, I will bring
up some local rural communities and show them what these areas look like. We will
create the list of characteristics of what makes up each category on the white
board. Students will raise their hands to individually make contributions to a
category. When we have all the characteristics listed out, the students will be given

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

a group activity to demonstrate their understanding. I will provide them a worksheet


with 3 columns on it. Then I will give them a page of little pictures. They will be
asked to cut out the pictures and paste them in the category where they belong. For
example, there will be a picture of a sky scraper which should be placed under the
Urban column. Then there will be a picture of a barn which should be placed under
the Rural category. I will ask students to work with their groups and assist each
other when they get stuck. I also will provide students the opportunity to come work
with me at a separate part of the classroom if they feel they need more assistance.
The last learning experience on this topic will be a writing and art
assignment. I will ask them to draw a picture of an urban or a rural community and
ask them to write about what they learned about that type of community. They can
use the list we came up with to aid them in the assignment.
Culturally Diverse Learners
For culturally diverse learners, I think it is important to reach out to parents
each month and explain activities and concepts that will be done in class. If there
are any concerns, they have the ability to express them to the teacher before the
activity is done. If a student is preferred to work in a group with all girls or all boys, I
would suggest that that student be put in a table group that is of the same sex so
that since most assignments are done at their table groups, that that student has
already been accommodated.
In reading the article Cultural Learning Styles by Al Heredia, (1999), it said
that the research in general tends to describe minorities as more field-dependent
than non-minorities. Cooperative learning tends to be the most recommended
technique for students from diverse cultural backgrounds. The learning experience

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

above provides multiple cooperative learning opportunities such as when the


students are working on their T Charts, and when students are working on their cut
and paste activities with the columns. These cooperative groups are good for a
culturally diverse group because it allows students to take on different roles which
would allow for some students to be more actively involved, and some to be less
actively involved where they feel comfortable. It allows for different perspectives to
be given, and they can discuss and share their ideas which promotes examination of
different perspectives and a view into different cultures.
Linguistically Diverse Learners
For English Language Learners (ELL), the teacher can make sure to vary the delivery
of the lesson. For example: when the teacher is reading the book, they can make
sure to read at a pace where students of all levels can follow along and understand.
For students learning the language, it is necessary to offer contextualized learning
experienceslessons that provide context clues using props, visuals, graphs, and
real objects (Eby, et al., 2011, p. 133). In the learning experiences above, the
teacher made sure to start the lesson with an activity that will preview what they
are going to learn by actively completing a concept map with the class. One way
this can be extended for linguistically diverse learners is to have note cards of
characteristics printed out for these students with a picture example of the
characteristic as well as the name in English and in their primary language. The
graphic organizer of the Urban, Suburb, and Rural communities gives students a
visual for the separation of the 3 categories. Graphic organizers are a strategy to
assist with bridging information for ELL students.

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

When students are completing the T Chart with the differences they saw in
rural and urban communities in the book, the teacher made sure to model how to
complete the assignment by providing an example to them, then again asking them
to model an example to the teacher to demonstrate that they understand what to
do. Also, in the group activity where they cut and paste the pictures in the correct
column, the teacher provides the opportunity for students to work with her if they
feel they need help. This allows students to decide on their own whether or not they
need more guidance.
Exceptional Needs Learners/ Students with Learning Disabilities or
Physical Disabilities
For any students that might have a learning or physical disability, the teacher
would need to consider looking to objects that might help that student according to
their IEP or to their learning needs. One example would be if a teacher had a
student who had a hearing disability, the teacher could make use of the classroom
microphone. Also, if they are reading a book, the teacher could pre-record a book so
that the student can re-listen to the book however many times they need to in order
to understand the story.
If students have learning disabilities, they might be asked to sit closest to the
teacher to make sure they are on task or can ask for assistance whenever needed.
The teacher might even see the need to pair students up based on needs, strengths
or weaknesses. Lastly, the teacher might supply an aid to help these students with
any special needs.
Low Achieving Students

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

For any low achieving students, they will likely need some extra assistance to
complete some of the assignments. The teacher can provide them the opportunity
to work with her if she sees that they are not grasping the concepts. For some
children to achieve successful growth of skills and understanding, the teacher must
be willing to alter the pace of the lessons, the difficulty of the material, and the
criteria for success (Eby, et al., 2011, p. 133). One way the teacher can do this is to
take a little extra time to go over the concepts. Asking students to provide their own
input or examples can help low achieving students make connections with material
from hearing it from other students.
Another way low achieving students can get more practice is to be provided
time to work online on a site called Brain Pop Jr. On there is an activity/movie about
Rural, Suburban, and Urban. This is another way to teach this idea to them.
One way the teacher could aid a low achieving student is to make sure to
visit this students desk when the class is working in their groups to ensure that
he/she is understanding the task. The educator might notice that they need some
additional assistance and ask them to come work with you in a small group instead
of with their table groups. By creating another small group, the teacher might make
these students still feel like they are working in groups instead of just working with
the low achieving student one on one.
When the students are expected to write about one of the communities, the
teacher can pull that student aside and interview the student about what they plan
to write about. They might work together on a pre-writing strategy or mini brain
storming activity to help with the assignment.
Advanced Learners/Gifted Students

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

10

According to Eby, et al. (2011), for advanced learners it is important to


provide enrichment activities that dig deeper into the lesson, and not just provide
more work for the student at the same level. Because of this, one idea I had for
gifted students would be to have them do some extra research online or provide
them time on Discovery Education or Brain Pop sites to further explore these ideas
through game, movie, or interactive activity.
Another idea would be for them to write a letter to an urban or rural student
and explain to them their favorite things to do in their current suburb community.
They could also explain what they have done when they visited a rural or urban
community or ask questions they want to know from that student about their
community. This allows them to express their knowledge, or express what they
would like to know further about the other communities.
They also could visit the reading center of the class where the teacher could
have checked out books from the school library that fall in the category of cities or
communities so they can explore more about other communities.
Conclusion
There are many different ways that a lesson or learning experience can be
modified or extended for different learners needs. It is up to the teacher to
determine the best way to do this to help all their students be as successful as
possible. Cooperative groups, graphic organizers and scaffolding are 3 ways that
can benefit almost all types of students and should be included in lessons as often
as possible. Teaching todays diverse student population is definitely a challenge.
Students bring a wealth of different perspectives to the classroom, whether they are
from mainstream American homes or culturally diverse homes where multiple

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

11

languages are spoken. Teachers who have faith in their students abilities to learn
are the ones who are able to make the most significant and positive differences in
their students lives (Eby, et al., 2011, p. 107).

References

UNIQUE STUDENT NEEDS

12

California State Department of Education. (2000). History-Social Science Framework


for California Public Schools K-12. Retrieved September 12, 2015, from
http://www.cde.ca.gov/be/st/ss/documents/histsocscistnd.pdf

Eby, J., Herrell, A., & Jordan, M. (2011). Teaching in K-12 schools: A reflective action
approach. (5th ed.). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall
Heredia, A. (1999). Cultural Learning Styles. Retrieved September 12, 2015, from
http://library.educationworld.net/a12/a12-166.html