Last post I talked about ways to make a general education morning meeting inclusive to all. Today I want to talk about collaborating with those general education teachers. Many of us have special education students who push into the general education class on varying levels. The most important thing we can do is keep an open line of communication with those teachers to make the best possible outcome for our students.
Teachers on both sides have varying levels of willingness to collaborate and being open to feedback. However, we need to remember that at the heart of this is the best interest of the students.
I set aside time each week to meet with the general ed teacher. You can write this into the student’s IEP if you need to in order to guarantee it happens. I have a consult with the gen ed teacher written into each of my students’ IEPs. The next thing to do is make a meeting time and stick with it!
I find it helpful if the gen ed teacher has a good idea of his or her plans for the following week set up. That way we can talk through any modifications that need to be made ahead of time. For example, the teacher can tell me the science plans for the next week and we can work together on what that might look like for each student’s needs. Vocabulary might need to be programmed into an AAC device or a worksheet might need to be modified. I’ve worked with teachers who are so organized that they already know which activities and greetings they will do for morning meeting and we can talk through whether anything needs to be changed or modified.
This consult time can also be a great time to check in and see how students are interacting with their peers and whether or not seats need to be changed or routines modified.
If nothing else, sometimes it’s just a good opportunity to sit and eat chocolate together on a bad day and know there’s someone else to commiserate with.
Either way, building these relationships with general education teachers is so important in building the school and classroom community.
How do you collaborate with your general education teachers?
Have a great day!