Our school is located in a small community that is very diverse. My students have mild to moderate learning disabilities and/or social emotional difficulties. Though my students are fully included in the general education classroom they continue to struggle with friendships, cooperation, and being a part of a group. As a Special Education teacher one of my goals is to seamlessly combine education, social skills, and fun with ALL students not just mine. All students should feel that they are capable, belong, and are significant.
My students participate with typical students in a full inclusion Rocket Club. We have retired United States Air Force engineers talk to us about their education and experience while working on rockets in the military. We discuss various topics such as force, propulsion, ignition, and altitude. We experiment with play or toy rockets, and then we build a model rocket. On launch day family, friends, and fellow students come to watch the rockets fly! Including both general education and Special Education students builds a sense of belonging, increases friendships, and adds to learning while doing something fun. Working with children of varying abilities, social skills and ways of problem solving prepares children for adult life.
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