Follow up on last question.

Discussion in 'General Education' started by ecteach, Sep 7, 2013.

  1. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    So, my last question made me think of this one.

    Did you take a SPED class in college?

    If so, what did you learn about?

    (Please don't take this as being a smart-a**....I really am curious about what you learned. I do realize that one or two college classes isn't going to make anyone an expert in any area.) ;)
     
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  3. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    no sped class.
     
  4. RadiantBerg

    RadiantBerg Cohort

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    I did--it was completely worthless. It was an inclusion class required for my degree, but it was K-12. I'm HS math, but the class was mostly elementary teachers so our discussions centered on ways to make reading more accessible and such. And the professor was extremely biased. If you tried to present any opinion other than her own, she would get ****** off.
     
  5. dave1mo

    dave1mo Comrade

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    My entire secondary education program in English was co-taught by an English ed professor and a SPED professor. It was a great experience and one of the reasons I volunteered to co-teach all three sections of English 10 inclusion this year.
     
  6. karebear76

    karebear76 Habitué

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    My college required all education majors to take a class about Exceptional Learners. It had a mandatory 10 hour observation, to be completed in any exceptional setting. I really enjoyed mine, even though I wouldn't want to teach in that setting. I was in a moderate class, with a more severe population than I work with, but it was fun.

    In all honesty, I don't think it in any way prepared a teacher for exceptional students. Not even close.
     
  7. ready2learn

    ready2learn Comrade

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    I took 1 college class on SPED.

    I don't remember what we learned in there. I think each class may have been about a different learning disability maybe? I do remember we had to do a field experience in the class. It was an interesting class.
     
  8. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Yes, I had to take two courses. One on physical, emotional and brain development in young people and one where we looked at a variety of common "disabilities" - stuff I no longer remember.

    My college, Vanderbilt, had a school for young children with developmental delays on campus and we had to spend time "working" there. All I remember from that is the teacher going over the date every morning ("today is Tooos-day, yesterday was Muuunn-day, tomorrow is Whennnns-day"; "today is the 6th, lets count to six ...") and zipping coats, wiping noses and walking kids to the in-class bathroom. The only thing I learned from this experience is that teaching young kids is not for me.
     
  9. thirdgradebuzz

    thirdgradebuzz Comrade

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    One SPED class was required for my degree in elementary ed.

    Beyond that, I got a minor in SPED. It was great preparation and very helpful. It taught me all the lingo/acronyms, the legalities involved, the basics about how to read/write IEPs, and strategies for dealing with the students most commonly included in the gen ed classroom.

    The extra classes were invaluable, and as a first year teacher I definitely knew more about SPED requirements, legalities, and diagnoses than most of my coworkers. The rest, I continue to learn by working with my inclusion students.
     
  10. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    Vanderbilt has one of the best Special Ed programs in the nation. I'm very surprised you didn't have more exposure to this population.
     
  11. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    I think it'd be great if all teachers had to be dual certified in sped and a content area, whether that content be general elementary or a specialized field taught at the secondary level or something that applies to K-12.

    I got dual certified in sped and elementary, and I've taught in both settings. In each setting, the fact that I had the knowledge of the other was truly invaluable.... and it makes me understand and appreciate what the other teachers in the opposite setting have going on even more.
     
  12. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    As a secondary ed major, I only had to take two classes.
     
  13. thirdgradebuzz

    thirdgradebuzz Comrade

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    I agree- to a point. I think a lot more coursework in SPED should be required for all teachers since inclusion is the norm. However, I shy away from going as far as dual certification just because many teachers would prefer one setting over another, and if their license had both, they could technically be assigned to either one if there was a need. But I definitely agree with you about the value of everyone understanding both sides of the coin.
     
  14. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Yeah, I understand that. But, if everyone were certified, then it wouldn't be so hard to find sped certified teachers. Then, it might not be as likely that teachers get "forced" into sped. You could argue that teachers' preferences might still be ignored, and this is true. However, some teachers who never thought they'd enjoy sped and would have never otherwise sought out the opportunity to work in it, may fall in love with it. Then you, theoretically, might have a lot more people willing to take those positions, so that those who don't want to work in sped don't have to.

    I never dreamed I'd want to be a sped teacher, until I decided to work as a para while getting my elementary certification. Then I fell in love with it and couldn't get the thought of being dual certified out of my mind. I sought out a special exception to allow me to enter the dual cert program a semester late, and my request was approved. The rest is history, as they say. It's not gonna happen for everyone, but I'm sure I'm not the only one.
     
  15. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    I basically took a couple of extra classes (I think it was 3) to get my additional sped cert. As part of the gen ed program, everyone took a class about including students with disabilities. We learned about the disability categories and were given a very general overview of how IEPs work. We had to spend 5 hours observing in a sped room. We also talked about some general accommodations and modifications. The one thing that I really remember from the class was one day when the professor had us do all these activities that simulated having a learning disability. I thought it was pretty interesting. For example, he had typed up a story with words/letters switched around, lines messed up, etc. and started calling on people to read it aloud literally 2 seconds after he passed it out.
     
  16. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    I had the exact same sped class for both my undergrad and graduate degrees (different colleges). The textbook and content was the same. It focused on different disabilities, their causes, and how they impact the learning for the student.
     
  17. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I did. I don't remember what we learned so it must not have been that great? I only graduated two years ago this past May.
     
  18. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    One class was required for my program. Worst class ever which I've vented about before on this site. Didn't even learn about IEPs.

    ETA: I knew I took a couple as part of my Rank I (which is the step beyond a master's degree here), but I couldn't recall the specifics. Just looked at my transcript to see I took two special education courses—one about effective instructional strategies and one working with parents. Both were useful, and I chose these classes as they were not required. My master's and Rank I classes were far superior to my undergrad program, and it also probably helped having (legitimate) experience in teaching to go alongside the class contents.
     
  19. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    I took 4 or 5 in my undergrad.

    I have take a few grad level ones just for "fun"
     
  20. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    Yep. Learned basics about the laws, IEPs, etc as well as touching on several types of disabilities or learning struggles such as Autism, ADHD, ODD, and more
     
  21. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    I feel the same way about my program. We did one at the beginning of the program and it really wasn't helpful at all to me. We had to interview someone who was part of a special population and observe an IEP, an SST, and a 504. They didn't really give us good strategies to take back, and I felt most of the time I didn't even really know what they were trying to teach us.
     
  22. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nope.

    But, for what it's worth, I've always taught in Catholic High Schools that made no accomodations for Special Ed kids. So, while I have taught one or two kids with Asberger's Syndrome or with other disabilites, I've never felt as though I was in over my head because of a kid's disabilities.

    But in retrospect, I can't imagine why I was allowed to graduate without at least a basic working knowledge of the basic laws and approaches. Had I not chosen to make a career out of teaching in a Catholic school, that knowledge would have been important in my dealings with my students.

    How was I allowed to get both a BA and a Masters without ever learning what "the spectrum" meant?? ( At least as far as I remember.. it was a LONG time ago)
     
  23. Shanoo

    Shanoo Habitué

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    I did. It was called Exceptionalities and we learned about the most common disorders (ADHD, Aspergers, Autism, Tourettes, ODD, etc.), as well as giftedness, and strategies to use to help them succeed in the classroom.
     
  24. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    We were required to take one. I honestly can't remember a thing about it. I got an A.
     
  25. OhThePlaces

    OhThePlaces Cohort

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    My program never offered a SPED class, which is pretty ridiculous when I was required to take a music class, an art class and a movement class.
     
  26. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    I didn't because I was in a 5 year program to get my master's in special ed, so they left all of the special ed. classes until the 5th year when you're taking grad classes. However everyone else in my program who wasn't getting their master's in special ed. was required to. I think everyone should have to, it's unfortunate some of the classes people take aren't helpful.
     

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