13 categories of disabilities :, Deaf-Blindness (low incidence), IDENTIFY…
13 categories of disabilities :
Speech and Language Impairment
(High Incidence) - Nicholas Giusti
"Speech or language impairment means a communication disorder, such as stuttering, impaired articulation, a language impairment, or a voice impairment, that adversely affects a child’s educational performance" (IDEA, 2018).
How to recognize the problem in the classroom
States words in the wrong order
Speaking in fragmented phrases
Struggles with using and understanding words
"Speech and language impairments are considered a high-incidence disability. Approximately 20% of children receiving special education services are receiving services for speech and language disorders" (Project IDEAL, 2013).
Susan (In Sun) Kwon
Students with Emotional Disturbance show
one or more
of the following
, to an extent that
hinders educational performance
: inability to learn (no identifiable health, sensory, intellectual factors), inability to maintain relationships, inappropriate feelings/behaviour for the situation, persistent negative mood, physical symptoms of personal issues. Click the link below to see the detailed
Process to Identify and Help Struggling Students
Students who demonstrate excessive hyperactivity
. These students benefit by
structuring their schedule
Students can given given clear instructions through
. This can be verbal reminders, posting class rules on the walls, or by using
Quit light is a computerized tool that helps
maintain appropriate volume levels
in class. The stoplight lights up according to the loudness. If the class exceeds the desired volume, the stoplight makes an alert and lights up red.
By communicating clear instructions, students will
know how to behave
what the consequences are
for not doing so. This will keep their overactivity under control.
Excessively hyperactive students also benefit in structured classrooms. Setting daily
guides students to their goals
, and keeps them
for longer. This is because they will be able to get into
habit of doing certain tasks
(ex. in the morning, students write in their journals), or after they
finished one task
(ex. it is D.E.A.R time, Drop Everything And Read, after they finished a worksheet). Once student's
routines have been established
, they will have a good understanding of what is
of them on a day to day basis which will guide them to
more of their
Incentivized Rewards System
Establishing an incentivized rewards system is an
way to help students with emotional disturbances. All students, especially young learners, need to have an
to complete tasks and achieve goals. Giving
tokens for good behaviour, participation, and work completion
is a positive reinforcement. These
tied to rewards and privileges
such as computer passes to play learning-games online. Brainpop is a site that allows students to play games from all subjects.
Rewards systems help to
manage emotional and behavioural responses
of students with Emotional Disturbances, by giving them a
Students who struggle with excessive aggression, abnormal mood swings, or anxiety
. They need to be given a
process their thoughts/ feelings
, and to
Calm Corners should not only be a
away from main learning spaces, but should have
etc. to further help students
diffuse negative emotions
through focus on other tasks. These spaces should help students to
regain control of their feelings
not only through individual processing, but also through the
help of counsellors or teachers
. Teachers/counsellors can
engage in discussion
with students in these spaces, to help them
their emotions/issues, and to help figure out a
to address the problem at hand.
Students who exhibit learning difficulties may
understand the lessons
learned in class. They need to be given
differentiated methods of learning
Live Binder & Educreations
Live Binder is a digital tool that allows educators to share lesson with students and classes. Teachers can upload text, videos, pictures etc. onto Live Binder for students to easily access. This tool can help students with learning difficulties because it is a
digital platform that can serve students with personalized educational content
as chosen by the teacher. Teachers can choose the lesson material according to the student's level (filtering only the core lesson contexts). And
tailor the assignments
to the student's
. This will give students with learning difficulties a chance to
learn alongside the class
on the same topics, but with
Educreations is a great tool to help students learn through a
. Teachers can add drawings, voice recordings, and pictures (like a
). Educreations can help students with learning difficulties get a better understanding of the class material through it's
. Another benefit that this tool can provide struggling learners is its
features. This is a great way for students to
Both Educreations and Live Binder are accessible on iPads and computers.
Students with learning with difficulties need a tailored plan to help them meet their educational needs/goals.
Teachers, parents, therapists, and administrators
can come together to communicate the child's struggling points and strengths. As a team, they can
ideate a plan
that satisfies the
student's learning needs
, and make attainable
for the student as well.
Students who demonstrate withdrawal
as well as with
. These students need to be given many
opportunities for inclusion
Inclusion & Socialization
small group activities and paired work
, withdrawn students will have a
chance to engage and socialize
with other students, and hopefully, make connections. Perhaps in conjunction to small group work, teachers can also use the
withdrawn student's interests
as a way to get them more
. Withdrawn students need to be given ample
words of affirmation
Intellectual disability means significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning, existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the developmental period, that adversely affects a child’s educational performance. The term “intellectual disability” was formerly termed “mental retardation.”
To make it easier to explain, there are limits to a person’s ability to learn at an expected level and function in daily life.
According to the American Association of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, an individual has intellectual disability if he or she meets three criteria:
IQ is below 70-75
The condition manifests itself before the age of 18
There are significant limitations in two or more adaptive areas (skills that are needed to live, work, and play in the community, such as communication or self-care)
How Does an Intellectual Disability Happen?
The most common causes of intellectual disabilities are:
Complications during pregnancy.
Problems during birth.
Diseases or toxic exposure.
Intellectual disability can be caused by injury, disease, or a problem in the brain. For many children, the cause of their intellectual disability is unknown.Some causes can happen before their birth.
How Common Are Intellectual Disabilities
Approximately 1% to 3% of the global population has an intellectual disability—as many as 200 million people.
The United Nations Development Program estimates that 80 percent of all people with disabilities live in low-income countries. While people with disabilities represent approximately one in 10 people worldwide, they are one in every five of the world’s poorest people.
No medical resources or money for a maternity check-up
No medical resources for timely diagnosis
Lack of experts and assistive technologies to help intellectual disability people in low-income countries
Some of the signs of intellectual disability:
sit up, crawl, or walk later than other children
2.learn to talk later, or have trouble speaking
3.find it hard to remember things
4.have trouble understanding social rules
5.have trouble seeing the results of their actions
6.have trouble solving problems
*Some of ID problems are not super obvious, and some symptom are light compared to other disabilities. For my daily lesson, I would start the action plan once I noticed these signs.
How can we help them?
Treat them with respect
How to Speak With People With Intellectual Disabilities
Because people with ID may have very diverse disabilities, their ID may cause learning disabilities, visual impairments, physical disabilities, and so on. So we need to prescribe the right medicine
Types of assistive technologies include
Screen reader software, which provides an oral translation of the information on the screen
Voice recognition software that allows people to navigate with their voice
Input devices such as large keyboards, mouse pedals, and ergonomic furniture
PCs and Macs with large screen monitors
Scanners for capturing text, USB headphones for listening, portable and stationary electronic video magnifiers (CCTV)
Blind or Visual Impairments Low Incidence(Sean)
IDEA definition: The IDEA officially defines the category as an impairment in vision that, even with correction, adversely affects a child's educational performance
Expanded Core Curriculum
Orientation and Mobility
Recreation & Leisure
Toddlers with disabilities who are eligible for early intervention can recieve early intervention programs
Individualized Family Service Plan
(IFSP) nominates a parent as a member of the strategy team
Early Intervention Service
Link to references:
Deafness: (low incidence)
Deafness doesn't affect a person's intellectual ability or learning capabilities. But a child requires some form of educational service to receive a proper and adequate education.
regular speech, language, and auditory training from a specialist
services of an interpreter for those students who use sign language : :
favorable seating in the class to facilitate lip reading
instruction for the teacher and peers in alternate communication methods, such as sign language; and
IDEA defines that an impairment in hearing, adversely affects a child’s educational performance.
A hearing impairment that is so severe that the child is impaired in processing linguistic information through hearing, with or without amplification is deafness, so the child cannot respond to auditory stimuli, including speech.
Early, consistent, and conscious use of visible communication modes and/or amplification and aural/oral training can help reduce this language delay.
Parents work with school personnel to develop an individualized education program (IEP)
Details the child’s special needs
Services and supports that will be provided to meet those needs
IDEA requires that the IEP team address the communication needs of a child who is deaf or hard of hearing
Traumatic Brain Injury (Chris Davidson)
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): an injury caused by external force or violent shaking
The term TBI is not used to describe people who suffer brain injury at birth or are born with congenital brain conditions
What are the signs of a TBI?
Difficulties with thinking
Social, emotional and behavioral problems
What are the effects of a TBI?
Difficulty with: thinking and reasoning, talking, remembering, seeing, hearing, behaving and paying attention, understanding words, problem solving and abstract thinking, emotional stability, physical stamina, physical activity (from basic motor control to paralysis)
What can teachers and schools do?
Utilize assistive technology for students with TBI
Computer software such as voice recognition programs or screen enlargement software
Automatic page turners, book holders, special grips for pens and pencils
Voice recorders or class videos for students who cannot take notes or may have difficulty remembering class content
Speech generating devices for students with difficulty communicating orally
1 more item...
Make sure you know as much about the student's condition as possible and are prepared for the students return/arrival to school
Make sure you have clear step-by-step instructions prepared for each class
Contact the student's parents early and often
Model and demonstrate new skills when explaining a task
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Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
covers a range of developmental disorders affecting “how a person perceives and socializes with others.”
How can children with ASD be identified?
Symptoms typically appear in very early childhood and may include: a lack of eye contact and repetitive or obsessive behaviours, limited reaction or interaction with peers, irritability, a lack of gesturing or unusual gestures like hand flapping and rocking, and delays in language or other cognitive skills. Symptoms can range from mild to severe. *
that some in the autism community object to descriptions like:
Asperger’s, PDD, or high/low functioning
. There are various reasons for this. Ideally a school psychologist will advise on appropriate terminology.
can help students with ASD?
First: Consult with caregivers
, i.e. parents and psychological or special education staff. :
ASD has a variety of presentations and thus strategies will vary too! :!:
lack of imitative social [skills.
Peer modelling :check:
Imitation games :check:
Teaching social interaction directly :check:
difficulty listening or challenging behaviours.
Some success has been seen substituting written work for the same work on iPads among students with
Strategies for improving
Students with ASD often respond as visual learners and can benefit from regimented, predictable work. Assigning work on iPads or computers has been shown to be helpful.
Break down complex tasks into step-by-step assignments.
Highly routinized and structured environments improve learning outcomes in students with ASD.
Specific Learning Disability
learning problems that affect the ability to understand and use language (listen, speak, think, read, write, spell or do mathematical calculations)
text to speech
note taking tools (e.g. LiveScribe SmartPen, Audionote)
speech to text
more time to complete a task
regular, quality feedback
SEN Support [
Other Health Impairments (High Incidence) - Sam
This particular category can include a number of diagnoses, including diabetes, asthma and sickle cell anaemia. An outline of some of the systems already in place to assist students in the UK can be seen in this short video:
I have decided to focus on five of the most common conditions in this category.
I earlier devised a mind-map of my own to help identify signs of a struggling student which can be found
Attention Deficit Disorders have a great potential to disrupt a child's education, as well as social life and mental well being. Unlike with Diabetes, there is a much greater emphasis on the teacher to help a student get the most out of their education.
I have also compiled a list of useful information for teaching students with these symptoms:
See Pages 2 and 3
Schools of Tomorrow
I believe students with these symptoms will benefit greatly from the developing emphasis of creativity, interactivity and personalisation in education. School's like Max Ventilla’s AltSchool are building a highly-personalized, structured education experience that I feel the public school system can take inspiration from.
Sickle Cell Anaemia
Sickle Cell Anaemia/Disorder (SCA/SCD) can have a hugely disruptive impact on a student's education, often without warning. There are a number of risks that might prevent them from having the same opportunities/experiences as their fellow students.
Here's a list of tips for teachers:
See Pages 4 and 5
Helping Students Succeed
This list of tips, plus more provided in the video below can help staff and other students identify potential high-risk situations before they occur. By understanding, educating and implementing these measures, there's no reason students with Sickle Cell can't succeed.
Students suffering from Epilepsy must be surrounded by staff and students familiar with their condition. Due to their seizures, these students can fall behind without the chance to catch up.
Here's a list of tips for schools with epileptic students:
See Page 7
Epilepsy Smart Schools
Every child’s experience of epilepsy is different and therefore supporting them at school will require an individualised approach. An Epilepsy Smart School (ESS) is a school which embeds inclusive, safe and educationally sound practices for all primary, secondary and special school students living with epilepsy.
Tourettes is not a serious health risk and should not become a reason for disrupted education if managed properly. The key here is informing and educating the staff and other students about the condition. Making the classroom a welcoming environment, free of prejudice or discrimination is vital
Here is a list of ideas for school to manage a student with TS:
See Page 6
In this video, Ellen Meyers M.S., M.Ed Tourette Association Education Committee Member (someone much more informed than me), discusses important strategies for teachers and substitute teachers on how to help children with Tourette Syndrome be successful in school.
Diabetes should not seriously affect a child's education, as long as the school, the student's support system and the student themselves are well educated on the condition and prepared. In the UK, free diabetes educational courses (DAFNE) are available for anyone with a diagnosis.
Here is a list of guidelines for students with diabetes:
See Page 1
When surveyed, people living with diabetes have suggested these things would make their lives easier:
-More support for emotional and psychological health
-Better access to healthcare professionals who understand diabetes
-Better access to technology and treatment
-Widely available information and education
-More support and understanding at work and school
-Hope for the future through diabetes research and prevention of Type 2 diabetes
The total or partial inability to hear sounds (Adam Felman, 2018)
Children born with unilateral deafness tend to have developmental speech delays. They may find it harder to concentrate when they go to school. Social activities may be more challenging than it is for children with no hearing problems.(Adam Felman, 2018, ).
Mental Retardation :checkered_flag:
substantial limitations in present functioning (
Deaf and Blindness
Deaf-blindness is a combination of vision and hearing loss. Deaf-blindness encompasses a spectrum from mildly hard of hearing plus mildly visually impaired to totally deaf and blind or combinations of the severity of vision and hearing loss.
Speech and Language Impairment :star: [:checkered_flag:]
speech and language impairments is “a communication disorder such as stuttering, impaired articulation, a language impairment, or a voice impairment that adversely affects a child’s educational performance.” (
Refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication (
It is when a child does not reach their developmental milestones at the expected times. It is an ongoing major or minor delay in the process of development (Kyla Boyse, RN, 2010)
Hearing Impaired :checkered_flag:
An impairment in hearing, whether permanent or fluctuating, that adversely affects a child's educational performance (
Specific Learning disabilities :checkered_flag:
A disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or to do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia (
When a child has several different disabilities we say, that he/she has multiple disabilities.
Hearing Impairments (low incidence)
The IDEA defines hearing impairment as "An impairment in hearing, whether permanent or fluctuating, that adversely affects a child’s educational performance but that is not included under the definition of deafness."
Accommodating Students with Hearing Impairments
Support Hearing Technology
Check for Understanding
Supplement With Visuals
Get Attention Before Speaking
Pre-teach New Concepts
Ensure Student Can See the Teacher's Face
Provide Preferential Seating
Reduce background noise
Assistive Technology for the hearing impaired
Hearing Loop Systems
Deaf-Blindness (low incidence)
According to the IDEA, deaf-blindness means concomitant hearing and visual impairments, the combination of which causes such severe communication and other developmental and educational needs that they cannot be accommodated in special education programs solely for children with deafness or children with blindness.
Here's what teaching deaf-blindness students can be like! (A whole heap of fun!)
Accessibility barrier include:
Document heading and labeling
No keyboard navigation
Assistive Technologies available
Use of bold line paper and raised line paper
Give student hints or clues for assignments or assessments
Orally (or tactually) responding to questions
Print and copy assignments with clear, large photos
Link to references:
IDENTIFY & ASSESS
Theses can only be assessed by medical evaluation or records that identify the physical abnormality, disorder or impairment.
A healthcare or medical professional usually determines if the impairment will interfere with their academic progress and participation in class activities.
They may observe the child in the classroom to assess potential problems the student may face, limitations and/or accommodations.
Students with orthopedic impairments typically have the same cognitive abilities as those without disabilities.
orthopedic impairments may also face challenges accessing transportation to get to and from school. Federal law, however, requires school districts to provide the transportation necessary.
Special seating arrangements to help him with posture and mobility, as moving around the classroom or moving around school hallways may be difficult. Schools may also need to arrange the schedules of these students in a way that prevents them from having to travel long distances from one class to another. Providing elevator access can also help.
Physical education classes, in particular, may pose difficulties. Some students with orthopedic impairments will need to be excused from gym class;
child's needs may change over time, and the officials involved in their individualized education plan can make amendments to the plan to accommodate new needs.
a bone-, joint-, or muscle-related disability that is so severe that it negatively affects a child’s educational performance.
Students with orthopedic impairments typically have the same cognitive abilities as their peers.
See Activity 1, LINK
Process Map for Student Referral to Special Education Services.
Devices to help them communicate or lessons that address their disability, such as those that will help them improve their gross and fine motor skills.
devices to help them communicate or lessons that address their disability, such as those that will help them improve their gross and fine motor skills.
Devices and technologies that might be utilized may include wheelchairs, specialized desks, canes, crutches, communication software, or speech recognition software.
Once recognized, have them go to a speech pathologist. They will diagnose and help the child overcome their speech and language impairment.
"The general education teacher should work with the speech-language pathologist to incorporate strategies to help the student generalize strategies mastered in speech therapy. This may include corrective measures, helping with speech and language exercises, and providing the student with immediate feedback when the speech-language pathologist is not present. The general education and special education teacher should both collaborate with the speech-language pathologist for interventions and teaching strategies" (Project IDEAL, 2013).
Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)
A popular and useful way to incorporate technology is by using a touchscreen such as a tablet. This allows the child to select words they are having difficulties with and practice them in a way to help improve their overall speech.
Causes range from genetic abnormalities (such as missing arm or leg) to disorders like cerebral palsy. which children are either born with or develop later in life.
Child may also acquire orthopedic impairments acquired as a result of disease, injury, or surgery.
Categories of disabilities and authors (Cohort 11):
Autism spectrum - Jennifer
Deafness - Maggie
Deaf - blindness - Mike
Emotional disturbance - Susan
Hearing impairments - Deidre
Intellectual disability - Yuqi
Multiple disabilities - Lemlem
Orthopedic impairments - Bradley
Other health impairments - Samuel
Specific learning disabilities - Magdalena
Speech and language impairments - Nicholas
Traumatic brain injury - Chris
Visual impairments - Sean
13 Categories of disabilities
Cohort 11 Members:
Maggie, Yuqi, Sam, Michael, Magdalena, Nick, Deidre, Susan, Chris, Sean, Lemlem, Bradley, and Jennifer
Teaching Strategies for ASD
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Despite the relative diversity of this category of disability, it comprises a small part of the overall special education population.