When you walk into my classroom, you will see various activities going on. You will see students collaborating with other students, various adults working with students, and even students working independently. The students in my classroom have autism and are receiving support in various ways.
Each morning, students read the morning message and retrieve their individual work binder from their cubbie.
Each work binder is tailored to meet the needs of each student. No binder is the same. Some students start their morning reading a message from me and are working on writing me back. Other students are reading a social story that will prepare them for the school day. Some work binders have work that students need to complete from the previous day. These work binders provide consistency and structure that is needed at the beginning of every school day.
This classroom is student centered. Students can work anywhere they want. Some choose a quiet area on the floor, or a bean bag, while others sit at a table. If students need pencils, glue or crayons, they know what drawer they can find these supplies. All needed school supplies are always available.
Work binders in my classroom have provided a structured routine needed for my students. Each year we need to replace binders with new ones and order supplies necessary to make the program successful. Students always look forward to making their binder "their own" by using scented markers and colored paper for decorating and designing. I love to add colored notebook paper as an option when writing. It always is motivating to complete an assignment with colored paper.
As long as I can make these work binders interesting, the better engaged students will be.
I like to offer materials that students don't necessarily have available to them in their general education classrooms. This is why this project is so important to me and my students.
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