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SECTION 1

1 Teachers structure the learning environment so that children with and with- out disabilities can interact and learn together.

activity-based approach

teachers use dramatic play, art, building with blocks, and other early child- hood materials to provide developmentally appropriate learning experiences.

interdisciplinary team

refers to several differ- ent professionals working together on a common problem.

Early Intervention and Public Policy

© Cengage Learning

Planning Activities

Curriculum planning for inclusive settings also requires teachers to integrate the goals and activities on the children’s IFSPs/IEPs into ongoing classroom ac- tivities. Using an activity-based approach to planning draws from the strong traditions of early childhood education and special education to best meet the learning needs of young children with disabilities (Bricker & Cripe, 2004). This approach allows teachers to use traditional early childhood activities such as dramatic play, art, nature walks, and water play to address specic goals and objectives across the developmental domains (e.g., cognitive, social, communi- cation, motor, self-care).

Professional Collaboration

In addition to classroom practices, inclusion requires the integration of pro- fessional efforts. Administrators, teachers, aides, volunteers, and members of the interdisciplinary team need to work together. Professional growth comes with collaboratively searching for ways to provide for children with developmental disabilities in the inclusive setting. Part of the search includes looking for ways to develop a partnership with parents. This means listen- ing to parents, consulting with them, and learning from them. In fact, all the participants—children, parents, teachers, classroom staff, and clinicians—can learn from each other in an integrated program. Early childhood teachers,

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