Brain-friendly Strategies for the Inclusion Classroom: Insights from a Neurologist and Classroom Teacher

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ASCD, 2007 - Education - 227 pages
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Many teachers in regular classrooms feel unprepared to teach students with learning disabilities. Fortunately, brain research has confirmed that strategies benefiting learners with special challenges are suited for engaging and stimulating all learners. In this book, neurologist and classroom teacher Judy Willis explains that we can best help students by putting in place strategies, accommodations, and interventions that provide developmentally and academically appropriate challenges to suit the needs, gifts, and goals of each student. Brain-Friendly Strategies for the Inclusion Classroom will help teachers

* Understand how the brain learns and the technologies that reveal this process.

* Implement strategies that are compatible with students' individual learning styles and honor their multiple intelligences.

* Improve the focus of students with attention disorders and help them gain the confidence and skills they need to develop goal-oriented behaviors.

* Create an enriching learning environment by incorporating student-centered activities, discovery and hands-on learning experiences, cross-curricular learning, and multisensory lessons.

* Implement strategic review, study, and test preparation strategies that will allow students to retain information and connect it with future learning.

* Build safe, supportive classroom communities and raise class awareness and empathy for students with learning disabilities.

It's time for teachers to lower the barriers, not the bar. Using strategies that align with research on how people's brains function, teachers can engage all students as individuals and help them reach their maximum potential with joy and confidence.


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AS an inclusion teacher, I have thoroughly enjoyed this most interesting and scientific-based book on inclusion for special education students. One caveat however: General education teachers are usually reluctant to adapt their instruction and lesson plans to the need of special needs children.
Whether because of ignorance or because of the additional preparation needed, regular teachers feel that they have their hands full with regular students.
The inclusion teacher has the difficult task of adapting the instruction to facilitate learning by his/her inclusion students. Many of these feel frustrated because the pace of instruction leaves them behind, even with the help of the inclusion teacher.
A whole new training program must be undertaken for both regular and inclusion teachers to make sure they are working as a team and not as "take care of your kids and I'll take care of the others." I have heard that phrase on severla occasions.


1Success for All Students in Inclusion Classes
2Looking into Multiple Intelligence Brains
3Teaching Students with Attention Disorders
4Enriching the Inclusive Learning Environment
5Review and Test Preparation Strategies for Diverse Learners
What the Future Holds
Sample Lesson Plans for Inclusion Class Activities
About the Author

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