ACE DisAbility Network The Inclusive Classroom
Topics • Introductions • The inclusive classroom • How people learn • Impact of disability on learning • Collaborative learning • Learning tools • Behaviour management
What is inclusive learning? • Consider one or more of the case studies provided and discuss: • What these instances tell us about inclusion
Susan is a retired woman who volunteers with the adult education literacy class where most of the students have an intellectual disability of some kind. She feels sorry for the students but often gets frustrated when they don’t seem to learn. One day, one of the students is rude to her and she quits. • Muriel goes to an aerobics class, mainly because it is on her plan which has identified that she has a weight problem. She has difficulty keeping up with the group and although she says she enjoys the activity she has made no friends. At the end of the class she and her support worker hurry away to be in time for Muriel’s next activity. • Reg is a 50 year old man who has attended a literacy class at his local community centre for the past ten years. He can write his first name which he learned in primary school but still cannot read. He says he likes going to the class because it is something to do. • The adult learning centre has been told that Jessica has Asperger’s. However this does not seem to affect her learning ability and she is doing well. One day, however, there is a fire drill with a fire bell being sounded. Jessica has not been back since
What is inclusion? • Inclusion is…. • More than presence • Finding time and spending effort • Co-ownership of space • Recognising the impact of disability • Meeting participant not organisational needs • Inclusion is not • Tokenism • Something only certain places do
Education Standards Applies to all education providers including: • Not for profit community providers • Providers of adult and community education • RTOs and non RTOs. Requires comparable opportunities and choices to those without disability in: • Enrolment • Participation • Curriculum development, accreditation and delivery • Student support • Harassment. Adjustments
Inclusive learning "There is a world of difference between, on the one hand, offering courses of education and training and then giving some students who have learning difficulties (intellectual disability) some additional human or physical aids to gain access to those courses, and, on the other hand, redesigning the very processes of learning, assessment and organisation so as to fit the objectives and learning styles of the student. But only the second philosophy can claim to be inclusive." Inclusive Learning, Report on Learning Difficulties and/or Disabilities Committee, UK 1996
How do people learn? • Memory • Relationships – trust – belief • Dialogue – learning is a social act • Reason to learn • Time • Positive reinforcement
Barriers to learning • Lack of confidence that they can learn • Lack of time- duration and frequency • Lack of reason to learn • Caring not learning
The adult learner • Role of experience • Immediate needs • Relaxed environment • Importance of success
Some impacts of disability on learning • Short term memory loss • Poor attention span • Easily confused • Difficulty with complex and multiple meaning • Inability to generalise • Slow to learn • Low self esteem • Need for structured environment • Affected by lights or background noise • Fatigue • Unexplained expressions of emotion • Lack social skills
Collaborative learning theory“Learning is a social activity” • Vygotsky • Zone of actual and proximal development • Scaffolding • I DO, YOU WATCH I DO, YOU HELP YOU DO, I HELP YOU DO, I WATCH • Collaborative learning • Positive interdependence • Promotional interdependence • Individual accountability • Social interaction • Group processing
Ways of collaborating • Discrete pairs • Pairs within a group setting • Intermittent pairs – think, pair, share
Academic results • Positive • Academic achievement • Cooperation • Enhanced perceptions of each other • Breakdown of barriers • Negative • Teachers not understanding the basic rules • Students’(parents’) fear of being “held back”
Classroom tools • Chat (dialogue) • Setting targets • Task analysis • Demonstration and talking through • Consolidation • Reflection and review • Streamlining • Question and answer • Check for understanding • Positive reinforcement • One instruction at a time • Routine • Repetition • Provide context • Social scripting • Prompting • Concrete, everyday examples • Joint construction
Assessments • Why? • How?
Classroom management Sara has joined a craft class with her support worker, Jane. Some of the other participants grumbled to each other that they didn’t think it was appropriate that Sara attend as they had paid their money to learn and didn’t want the teacher to give all her attention to Sara. Sara wanted to learn but because it took her longer to pick up some things, she tended to call out to the teacher a lot. When the teacher was with someone else, she got bored and wandered around the classroom or asked Jane to take her to the toilet loudly. The teacher was confused and didn’t know what was expected of her, so she ignored Sara and Jane. Sara became more bored and noisier. Some of the other class participants told the teacher at the end of the class that they wouldn’t be coming back if Sara was still in the class next time.
What could the teacher have done • Negotiating support worker role before starting • Setting a Code of Conduct • Having a range of activities to suit abilities • Using group work or buddy systems
Working with a support worker • What kind of support is provided: • attendant care (toileting and feeding); • educational support; • social support; • transport, or • combination of any of these? • What is the support worker prepared to do ? • Support worker policy • Withdrawal plan
Code of conduct • Students – “What do I expect from others?” • Tutor – “What do I expect from students?” • Non negotiable conditions • Consequences of breaking code • Discuss • Ratify • Publish • Monitor.
Behaviour management • Preventative strategies • State expectations • Code of conduct • Be aware of difficulties • Recognising aggression • Consistent approaches/management plan • Incident response • Consideration of dignity • Who can help?
Look after yourself • At some point you will feel tired, frustrated, irritable, overwhelmed • This is normal – but don’t react negatively • Recognise when this is happening • Find someone to talk to • Have a break