What would be some accomodations as a teacher that one can utilize in the classroom when it comes down to children with special needs and involving them in safe, science projects?
The accommodations will depend on the student's disability and the project. For example, I have students that are DHH and therefore, when I plan my lessons I need to ensure I have other input opportunities for students to access the content, such as visual aides. For project accommodations and safety, you can have the student work with a peer tutor/mentor that can facilitate the project for the student. In addition, after giving your students instructions on the project as a whole class, you can have 1:1 check-ins with students (with special needs who may need this) on whether they understood the instructions and the steps they need to take to complete the assignment. This can entail, providing students with some sort of checklist to help them stay on track and safe.
This depends on the skill levels of the students! Through my interactions I have found that doing a classroom experiment as a whole works best - that eay each student gets a turn to participate with teacher assistance and the teacher is not stressed over the class conducting multiple experiments.
For children with special needs, it can depend on their needs for what they might need to help them with science activities. For example, a child who has trouble sititng still with attention issues may need to take breaks from the lesson and do something else for a while. Or a child who has trouble with verbal directions may do better if you have photos showing what to do so they can look at the photos.
Maybe one on one instruction if possible, prior to completing the assignment so the student understands the directions fully which will ensure their safety with equipment or anything involved in the experiment!
It most certainly depends on what the disability/needs are in order to accommodate effectively.
I also agree that it depends on the student’s needs and disability. Prior to any experiments I would observe how the student works independently and in a group setting, that way you can accommodate his or her need by having an idea of how comfortable he or she feels. The important thing to remember is to have good knowledge of your students, by doing that you can have an indication of how to accommodate them during a science experiment.
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