I have nine students, who are K-first graders. Our school is a specialty school designed to be a therapeutic whole experience for a range of disabilities. Academics is a strong focus at our setting, and our students work very hard on all four subjects each day.
These students are artists, singers, and dancers, and love to participate in gym, art, and science!
Our school is located in an urban setting within Chicago Public Schools. Eighty percent of my students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch.
My special needs kindergarten and first-grade students are all delayed in language/communication skills. Visuals are needed to help them learn that print has meaning. A large part of our classroom structure and routine is teaching them to follow a schedule. This is accomplished by creating picture schedules that show and say what each activity is in the school day. By following a picture schedule, students learn how to manage time and predict what will happen next on their schedule. These picture word cards must be sturdy and laminated to be used each day and so I have requested card stock paper and laminating pouches. Schedule components are mounted using Velcro so students can move/change as needed (ex. when a task is done student can move it to 'finished' side and then tell what activity will happen next).
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