When it comes to diversity in the classroom, one of the key issues that teachers face is that of disabilities. The issue of disabilities affects not only science teachers, but all teachers. For this reason it is important to understand the different types of disabilities and some of the strategies that teachers should use to address the students’ differences.
There are many types of disabilities, and these can either be learning disabilities or emotional and behavioral disorders. Child with a disability means a child evaluated in accordance with §300.304 through §300.311 as having mental retardation, a hearing impairment (including deafness), a speech or language impairment, a visual impairment (including blindness), a serious emotional disturbance (referred to in this part as emotional disturbance), an orthopedic impairment, autism, traumatic brain injury, an other health impairment, a specific learning disability, deaf-blindness, or multiple disabilities, and who by reason thereof needs special education and related services (Assistance to States for the Education of Children With Disabilities, 2007).
First of all, it is important to understand the different types of disabilities. As seen from the definition of a child with a disability above, there are several kinds of disabilities. The disabilities are based on the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and each disability involves cases in which a child’s educational performance is negatively affected (National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities, 2010). Some of the disabilities are more common than others, but it is important that teachers are familiar with each type of disability. Once...
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...the many types of disabilities and as well as the symptoms for each disability. Once teachers understand the disabilities, they can begin using some of the “best practices” in order to effectively teach students with disabilities.
Assistance to States for the Education of Children With Disabilities, 34 C.F.R. pt. 3 (2007)
National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities. (2010, September). Categories of Disability Under IDEA. Retreived from http://nichcy.org/disability/categories
National Science Teachers Association Board of Directors. (2004, May). NSTA Position Statement: Students With Disabilities.Retrieved from http://www.nsta.org/about/positions/disabilities.aspx
Norman, K., Caseua, D., Stefanich, G. (1998). Teaching Students with Disabilities in Inclusive Science Classrooms: Survey Results. Science Education, 82(2), 127-146.
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