I teach an AM and PM section of preschool students; students' ages range from three to five. For the first time, my special education preschoolers have typical peers attend their class with them, so they can learn from one another. My morning group has been together since the beginning of the year, and it is hard to tell who are the kiddos with and the ones without IEPs. Friendships have formed, and they look out for each other! My PM section has opened recently with a group of young threes, and they are learning how to be in school.
My students are special not only because some of them have developmental delays (but don't know it and still give 110%!), but because of some other factors.
One of those factors is that we are in a low income neighborhood. Many of my students and their families hail from different countries. It is such a pleasure to learn about their cultures. However, some of my students and their families need support navigating school and the special education process.
One of the curricular themes taught in my classroom is entitled "Our Community." I am requesting community washable dolls to introduce community helpers in a developmentally appropriate and concrete way. I am also requesting three costumes I do not have yet so students can "be" and experience that particular helper.
I think that these materials will allow students in my sections to make more meaning of what a community helper is, as well as provide some examples of who a community helper can be.
By showing the community helper dolls prior to reading a text about a community helper, students can see and feel what that helper looks like. They can also dress up as a community helper that interests them, and use language to describe who they are.
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