Classroom Management in Inclusive Education
- Accessible infrastructure provides the basis for effective inclusion. Minor changes in classroom settings enhance accessibility and reduce the dependency of the children with special needs.
- Changes in layout of the class, provision of necessary materials, assistive devices and support from the teachers creates a learning environment for all children.
- In addition, some specific teaching techniques and support will strengthen the inclusion and participation of children with special needs.
- Importance and significance of Class Room Accessibility for inclusive education and teaching support.
- Poor physical accessibility is a key barrier to the participation and protection of children in an education system.
- Accessibility can be achieved with modification and adjustment in the current environment.
- Emphasis should be given to accessibility in planning of future programs and interventions.
End of Day / Session Quiz
- Classroom management is an issue of prime importance for good teachers. Having students with diverse needs in one class can create significant challenges for the teachers. There are many ways of organizing class structures and procedures including physical layout of the classroom, seating plans, classroom procedures, and issues related to scheduling and implementation of a toileting routine and administering medication.
1. Improved Accessibility for Students
A. Physical layout of the inclusive classroom
The primary consideration in an inclusive classroom is the physical layout for all children in order to be involved in all learning activities with the rest of the class.
- Classroom access with installation of ramps in the areas where there are stairs. Secondly, the narrow doors may need to be widened. Doors that are easy to open from a sitting position and will remain open for a long time may be required for inclusive classrooms.
- Seating plan of the students is another important factor in physical layout of an inclusive classroom. For example, children with attention related problems should be seated in areas in which distraction is minimized. For these children, avoid a window seat. Considerations should also be given to the height of tables and benches in the classroom. In an inclusive classroom, benches may need to be lowered and tables rose. It depends on the nature and type of the impairments of the students.
- For the children with visual impairments, issues of lighting and visibility, and mobility in the classroom must be considered. In general, these children should be seated in a position that is well illuminated /lit and from which they are best able to view instructional material being used in the classroom.
- Children with hearing impairment should be seated in a position that enables them to hear what the teacher is saying. If they are good in lip reading they should be seated in a position from which they can clearly see the teacher speaking. Modification in physical layout of the classroom is a beginning point of classroom management.
B. Management of materials
a) Material management relates mostly to modification or change in written material. It will help you in managing the material environment of classroom. In an inclusive classroom, most of the students face difficulties in reading and writing tasks. The first point is to increase the readability of the written passages. For some children (e.g., for visually impaired children) this may be managed by enlarging the print, for others it may mean double spacing or using a particular font.
b) Highlighting critical features is another strategy that can assist in comprehension. This enables the students to concentrate on key features of a text. You can highlight the main ideas of written material, underline or color the text. Another way is to delete the extra words or sentences, or paragraphs of the text. They will help the students to learn the main ideas of the text.
C. Use of resources
Resources include both human and material resources such as the provision of additional support from the colleagues, professionals, volunteers, peer tutors, parents and other professionals. It also includes material resources like use of assistive learning devices, computers and augmentative devices etc. the following are some guidelines to manage resources in a classroom.
- Use additional instructional support (Para-professionals, volunteers, peer tutors, parents and other professionals)
- Coordinate a range of community and other support services (like Parent Teacher Association, School Management Committees)
- Utilize additional technological resources (low vision devices, hearing ads, computers, augmented communication devices, video and audio)
- Collaborate with other teachers for the sharing of resources.
D. Plans for substitute teacher
Every teacher will miss days of work through illness at some point in his or her career. In the inclusive classroom, it is important that any absence is planned for in advance. In addition to any plan you would arrange for a substitute teacher. You should prepare a brief information folder, updated by you for the information of the substitute teacher.
The folder may include the following things:
- General information on children in your class.
- A brief description of your inclusive philosophy and approach.
- Your expectations for the substitute teacher in your absence.
- Any important medical or other information about special children.
E. Meeting student`s personal care and medication
Some children will require assistance with eating. As with any area of personal care, teacher and paraprofessionals should ensure that a feeding routine is developed that respects the personal dignity and choices of the students.
Some children require help with toileting i.e. students with physical impairment and students with intellectual disability. Teacher must arrange a staff to deal with these types of personal needs. The staff involved in toileting children should follow some precautions in order to maintain the health of all involved.
The students with seizure disorders and Attention Deficit Disorders (ADD) are often treated with medication. Teachers should only administer medication on the basis of prescription. They must consult with parents about the routine of medication.
Finding your Classroom Management Style
Classroom management style determines how will one can interact with students and build a positive relationship with them.
Can students be made part of effective classroom management? How do you involve students in managing your classroom?