I am a special education teacher in a rural high school close to Indianapolis, IN. I teach Math remediation, English remediation, and English classes. My students range from those without an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) to those with an IEP. I have all grade levels 9th through 12th in my classes at one time.
My students are those who struggle with content in most of their classes.
I work with them to improve math and English skills. I also work with them to improve organization, content retention, and focus. The reading levels of my students vary from 4th grade reading level to 10th grade reading level. My students struggle with content knowledge as texts become more difficult for them to navigate. Often I have to differentiate my level of reading in order to help them develop higher order thinking skills. My students also have a wide variety of reading interests so it makes reading the "same ole' content" more difficult and challenging. With today's changing standards and graduation requirements, I am challenged to stay on top of my students to get their best work and deepest knowledge.
As I begin our unit on William Shakespeare and the Elizabethan Language, I wish to use a graphic novel to help my students develop a better understanding of plot, character development, and literary elements associated with plays. My current students are ones who struggle to read and stay interested in their reading. The graphic novel, Romeo and Juliet, has an easier language, plus it will be of more interest to them as they read and enjoy the pictures that go with each scene. The easier language will help my students understand the content of the play so they can enjoy the story instead of focusing on what the words are saying.
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