General and Special Education
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The purpose of this paper is to compare two instructional objectives topics. In this case, the paper seeks to compare how general education and special education teacher ensure that the student acquire the necessary life skills and literacy. Teachers decide on a number of issues in their everyday instruction that affect the learning of students. The differences in teaching materials, instructional activities, as well as means of assessment render it indispensible for teachers to design and implement instructional objectives. Second grade general education teacher, is a trained teacher who can instruct well the students without any disability whereas a special education teacher is one who is trained on how to instruct both youths and children with a range of disabilities (Tickle, 2002). The objective of both teachers is to ensure that the students acquire the necessary life skills and literacy.
Both the special education and the general education teachers will have to modify the existing curriculum of general education to suit the students’ needs and to ensure that the requisite remedial instruction is provided. In addition, the general education teacher will have to adjust the techniques used to facilitate learning to accommodate the needs of the student with disability. This will include the use of techniques such as intensive individualized tutoring, small group work and problem-solving coursework (Corte & Verschaffel, 2006). With the tremendous growth in technology and its extensive use in special education, general educationist will have to incorporate the use of computer software’s as part of the curriculum materials. The familiarization will involve both the know-how and the installation of the software in their computers. For a special educationist, the curriculum will be individualized through the development of IEP (Individualized Education Program). The program puts into consideration the needs of the student and set goals to be achieved and how it should be achieved.
Environmental and social factors will be the determining factors of future education. This implies that future curriculum will incorporate community needs since learners are part of the society together with the business world. The curriculum will also include skills such as problem solving. This implies that those skills that are required in solving educational problems should be part of the curriculum. The content of the future curriculum include futuristic education, immigrant education, electronic education, technical literacy, lifelong learning, international education, environmental education, nuclear education, health education and physical fitness, middle-grade education, aging education and for-profit education (Sugrue & Day, 2002). The teacher’s role will change from providers of information to facilitators. With technology the way individuals work is modified, hence, the future curriculum should incorporate society’s lifestyle, how learners feel as well as how they learn. Teachers will play a primary role of instructional managers. The school curriculum represents work in progress involving a considerable number of stakeholders inside and outside the educational setting. Administrators, parents, businessman, students, community representative and teachers are among those who are responsible for curriculum development and design (Taylor, Marienau & Fiddler, 2000).
Identification of special needs
General educationist identifies the needs of a student with disabilities either through observation or the parents worry about the child. Observations are based on monitoring their progress. When the achievements of the student are far below the expected it indicates a sign of disability. The special educationist will identify the special needs of student by use of early intervening services (EIS). The services include the use of screening tests. This will help in the identification of difficulties such as behavioural and learning or physical and sensory problems. There identification may be based on the student’s medical history.
Methods of Assessment
In order to facilitate the students with disability take a test, various techniques have to be used. For a general educationist, he/ she can give additional time during a test for those with disability or opt to read the material orally. This will make it easier for the disable to take an exam. Their assignments will also be simplified and shortened.
Modification refers to changing the curriculum a bit to fit the needs of those with disabilities. In a broader sense, it means alternative assessment. For the general educationist, they give alternative assessment for the disable unlike the special educationist who administers assessment using the designed curriculum (Gronlund, 2009).
How to support and meet the needs of students with disability
Instructional accommodation will arise during the execution of the normal curriculum or when taking a test. For a general educationist to fully accommodate the needs of a student with disability, he/ she have to follow a developed IEP (Individualized Education Program). In the process, the general educationist will thrive to attain the set and tailored goals of the student. The program also incorporates the necessary steps to prepare well the student for middle school or for youths’ job or after secondary study. A general educationist should follow these steps. For the general educationist to support the IEP, he/she ensures that relevant materials and programs are available and the expertise of a specialist utilized (Rosenberg & McLeskey, 2008). The learner with disability should be given the required materials like computer, joystick among others to facilitate their learning process. All these can be accomplished if there is willingness to assist on the part of the educationist. On another hand, special educationist develops the students IEP to suit the inabilities. In addition, they design and instruct appropriate curricula and assign work that perfectly matches the student disability.
The teachers have to participate during the process of reviewing the IEP to best suit the student special needs. They also play a core role in the development of the appropriate behavior of the students with disabilities, socially and academically. This will help them to grow emotionally and interact well during social situations. The accommodation in broader sense will include the preparation of the disabled to face their future. This involves the provision of guidance and counselling together with life skills. These services will make it easier for the disable to lead a well-organized and better life after the schooling. The modifications should not lower the standards and expectations by which the students are evaluated. The modifications will have a change of the content, delivery and instructional levels (Kumar & Bindhu, 2002).
In addition, teachers participate in modification of the education system. The education system in the United States has undergone radical changes since the year 1940. The developments in the system have seen the country throughout its continued search for a curriculum that produces globally competitive graduates. The realization of the success has been made possible by the efforts that different stakeholders have undertaken to ensure reforms are implemented in the system. Their support extends to their willingness to provide financial support and involvement in different partnerships whose chief objective is to ensure success prevails among students. The education system has transformed the current dynamic society we are living in today, with its unrelenting pronounce of an integrated and equal society. This is evident with the eradication of aspects such as discrimination (Mertler, 2009).
The special education teachers administer discipline for the disable through the BIP (behavioural intervention plan). On the other hand, general educationist administers discipline in reference to the IEP. Another consideration will be based on whether the behavior is a manifestation of disability or it is not. In case of a behavioural problem, that is not a manifestation of disability; the student will be punished just like the other students (Gronlund, 2004).
Encouragement of students with disability
For a general educationist, a student with special needs can be encouraged through guidance and capacity building. This will provide the student with the opportunity to perform his/ her functions without difficulty. On another hand, special educationist will encourage the students through equipping the student with life skills so that they can be people who depend on themselves.
Inclusion and remediation
General educationist take on inclusion is that it will create an opportunity where the existing social stigmas are reduced and student achievements improved. For a special educationist inclusion will limit the student from getting the required attention and practical skills.
Laws governing instructional behaviour
General education and special education teacher instruction are govern by laws. Laws can be defined as the body of rules and regulations that govern an individual conduct. For this case, we look at those laws that regulate the conduct of both teachers when they are discharging their duties. The government or state has the sole authority of setting or putting in place laws that govern teacher’s behaviour. In the United States, the National Education Association is responsible for laying down the laws to be adhered to by teachers during their work time. When adequate legislations are put in place, the education system will run smoothly and satisfying performance could be attained. The teachers are made aware of the penalties that their negligent behaviours could attract. The breach of the code of conduct normally attracts attention from the teachers governing body, and their redress may not be well with the accused teacher. The presence of the law helps to trim the way teachers carry themselves. This is based on the provision that in instances where the teacher proves to be incompetent, the law provides for the suspension of the teacher (Hammond & Bransford, 2005).
The laws are put in place with the main objective of improving teacher-student relationship. The law stipulates how the teacher should relate well with the student. When the code of conduct provisions are adhered to fully the academic excellence of the students will be improved. The laws governing teachers will ensure that the teachers act reliably and professionally when associating amongst themselves as well as with students. This ensures that the students attain quality education and there is free flow of information that is relevant to the existing body of knowledge among the teachers. Where laws are clearly stated and outlined, the rights of students and teachers are well protected and confliction of the rights minimized. The teachers will be well aware of what they are required of them, hence maximum and respective services rendered (Mamlin, 2012). This will see the education system and performance undergo full vertical transformation.
In the same line of thought, learning style of both second grade and special education teacher encompasses individual physiological, cognitive, and affective behaviour processes. These processes represent more or less established indicators of how individuals perceive, relate, and react to learning opportunities. Learning styles are more or less permanent individual attributes that are not acquired easily. Consequently, a great deal of educational and psychological research has been devoted to the identification of learning styles and the relationship of personal differences to effective learning (Lindberg, 2007). In general, learning style researchers believe that curriculum and instructional strategies should be adjusted or tailored to individual learning styles. Learners who receive instruction adapted to their personal learning styles obtain higher test scores and more eagerly seek to learn and develop. In contrast, a disparity between learning style and instructional strategy frequently causes both the teacher and the student to feel frustrated and aggravated. Finally, research findings suggest that the socio-economic, ethnic, and cultural environment of students need to be considered when identifying learning styles and planning instructional strategies (McKenzi & Santiago, 2005).
It is important to examine some of the theories that have been developed in relation to how individuals learn, and are applicable in the achievement of instructional objectives. In this context, learning theory scholars have long examined how individuals learn. For example, developmental learning theories hypothesizes that learning occurs incrementally as an individual matures cognitively, emotionally, and physically. According to behaviourist learning theory, learning is demonstrated through behavioural changes that occur in the learner’s response to stimuli in their environment. Cognitive learning theories are concerned with how the brain processes and stores new information. Adult Learning Theory (andragogy) assumes that adults have learning needs that are unique from those of children and that adults’ prior experiences influence their learning (DeVries, 2002).
Learning theory scholarship represents an effort to comprehend and describe how individuals learn. Three of the most widely recognized learning theories include: developmental learning theory, behaviourist learning theory, and cognitive learning theory. Apart from this point, there is the developmental learning theory. The foundation of developmental learning theory is the idea that learning occurs incrementally as an individual matures cognitively, emotionally, and physically. In general, developmental theories comprise the following fundamental principles: (a) Every healthy human being goes through specific stages of development, (b) Instructors should respect individual differences, which are a product of the individual’s stage of development, (c) Instructors should pay attention to the strengths and limitations of students at different stages of development, (d) Teachers need to evaluate students’ developmental readiness to read and write, and (e) Teachers need to deliver instruction appropriate for the student’s level of development (Day, 1999).
The theory of adult learning, which is termed as andragogy is different from pedagogy, the traditional method of educating children, and addresses the following six attributes of the mature student: (a) the student’s need to know, (b) the student’s self-concept, (c) prior experience, (d) readiness to learn, (e) orientation to learning, and (f) motivation. The theory assumes that mature students participate in educational environments in order to satisfy an existing need (Spinelli, 2006). Moreover, adult learners have a wide variety of prior experience that will influence their learning. According to the adult learning theory, the instructor should acknowledge the needs and accumulated learning of the adult pupil and implement a collaborative classroom in which the instructor and student learn from one another. By so doing, the learning of the student will be made easy.
Special education and the general education teachers will have to modify the existing curriculum of general education to suit the students’ needs and to ensure that the requisite remedial instruction is provided (Arunachalam & Gopal, 2010) . Learners who receive instruction adapted to their personal learning styles obtain higher test scores and more eagerly seek to learn and develop. In contrast, a disparity between learning style and instructional strategy frequently causes both the teacher and the student to feel frustrated and aggravated. In addition, the government or state has the sole authority of setting or putting in place laws that govern teacher’s behaviour. In the United States, the National Education Association is responsible for laying down the laws to be adhered to by teachers during their work time.
Learning style of both second grade and special education teacher encompasses individual physiological, cognitive, and affective behaviour processes. These processes represent more or less established indicators of how individuals perceive, relate, and react to learning opportunities (Day, 1999). Learning theory scholars have long examined how individuals learn. For example, developmental learning theories hypothesizes that learning occurs incrementally as an individual matures cognitively, emotionally, and physically. According to behaviourist learning theory, learning is demonstrated through behavioural changes that occur in the learner’s response to stimuli in their environment. Cognitive learning theories are concerned with how the brain processes and stores new information.
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