I am a current second grade teacher in a city school district with students that have goals in academics, however have limited resources in grasping them. Families in our community typically struggle to make ends meet. Seventy-nine percent of our students receive free and reduced breakfast and lunch plans daily, which is configured based on income.
In the past years, I have worked with many students coming from environments of lower socio-economic status which is often due to limited prior knowledge and accessibility to resources.
These students struggle with learning the way other students in the classroom may learn. Visual and hands-on materials can assist in academic improvement and in forming connections. The use of videos can also encourage the building of vocabulary and about topics they have limited knowledge about due to not having opportunities to experience them.
Along with students of a lower socio-economic environments, I also work regularly with students of increased academic needs. These students can be on specialized plans that are set to meet their academic needs (IEPs). These students usually require special needs and with that, many times the information taught in the classroom needs to be introduced differently.
In schools today teachers are made aware of the differences in learning styles of students and how lessons and instruction need to accommodate these differences. Some students learn more through a hands on learning experience, while others learn better with auditoral instruction. Students also come to school with a lot of energy and have difficulty sitting still for long periods of time. Instead of these students getting into trouble for causing distractions, many teachers allow options for their feet to keep quiet while still busy using things such as fidget bands and of fidget boxes to keep fingers occupied.
The use of fidgets offers students outlets for extra energy while encouraging them to positively steer this energy into an appropriate manner for classrooms to run effectively and smoothly during instruction.
Fidget bands can be placed on classroom chairs to allow students to kick and tap feet without creating distractible noises. The bands are applied to the front legs of the chairs and are made with flexible materials to allow easy movements. Fidget boxes can be accessible for students who struggle with attention and need to hold something to manipulate in their hands while learning. These are also a great addition for teachers to have in the classroom for students who become frustrated and need to calm down before they can work again effectively. Unfortunately, materials for these fidget boxes can become costly and preferably a large quantity is more applicable to effectively reach multiple students who need a fidget at the same time. Also, an assortment of options offers students who frequently borrow these items, opportunity to use different fidgets instead of the same ones each time.
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