is one of the hardest things for teachers, because children with special needs best
display skills in their functional environments while they are actually involved in their
play. So what do you do to demonstrate that a skill has been present with some
Sometimes I will focus on one student each week and observe them and chart some of their behaviors. Sometimes we'll get together as a staff and write down our impression and observations of a particular child.
I know one teacher who has a set of white labels on a clip board and quickly writes down observations of individual children on labels and later peels them off and puts them in that child's chart. I want to focus on this next year. There's so much going on all the time, it's just a matter of getting it down.
I do a yearly evaluation, using different tools like a Brigance or the Linder Functional Play-Based Assessment. That has some nice dialogue of some questions to ask children during their play. I've been thinking about portfolio assessment for children who are multiply involved. My students need something when they leave me to demonstrate what they have accomplished--that they've had access to the curriculum--a visual display of that. Videos would be great.
Barbara comments on other key elements
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This material was developed by the National Center to Improve Practice (NCIP) in collaboration with the Center for Literacy and Disabilities (CLD) at Duke University. NCIP was funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs from October 1, 1992 - September 30, 1998, Grant #H180N20013. Permission is granted to copy and disseminate this information. If you do so, please cite NCIP. Contents do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by CLD, NCIP, EDC, or the U.S. Government. This site was last updated in September 1998.
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