Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute Home

Understanding and Supporting Our Peers with Cognitive Challenges

by
Melanie Wolf


Contents of Curriculum Unit 07.05.12:

To Guide Entry


Introduction

Celentano Museum Academy is a unique school. Formerly, in 1995, Celentano School was a regional school whose students ALL faced Cognitive Challenges, most under the diagnosis: Mental Retardation (some "severe and profound", some "mild to moderate"). A lot has changed, because of updated laws protecting the rights of Handicapped Students. Now only approximately 20% of our student body of 450 children is comprised of students with Special Needs, some cognitive (learning and thinking) deficits and some physical and other disabilities. Of course, all schools in New Haven have students with some cognitive challenges/disabilities. In fact, each classroom has at least one member of the class who has a disability. Therefore, all of our students must learn about the needs and feelings of their peers. Students who are sensitive to the needs of their fellow students can better learn in a cooperative setting. Thus, any teacher in our school system could benefit from using this unit with his/her students.

The goal of this curriculum is to prepare students to meet the challenge of living and learning with all of their peers. Students will study the attributes of Down Syndrome and will gain knowledge of and become aware of the perspective of some of their peers. They will compare and contrast challenges of students who live with Intellectual Disabilities, such as Down Syndrome.

to top


Unit Rationale

The motive for teaching this unit is threefold. First of all, federal and state law mandates teaching students who have disabilities alongside students who do not. Secondly, teachers who use this unit will learn about how and why all teachers are required to teach students with disabilities. Thirdly, students will learn about their peers' challenges, while increasing proficiency on Connecticut's Mastery Test Literacy strands.

Desired outcomes or learning objectives:

The students (in Grades 3-6) will study the physical and educational challenges faced by students with Intellectual Disabilities, such as Down Syndrome They will gain knowledge in order to approach and interact with individuals with intellectual or other challenges. Students will read, analyze, critique and share modern children's literature (fiction) and non-fiction in order to increase Disability awareness. At the end of the unit, students will present newly acquired knowledge learned in print and other visual media.

to top


Background

Inclusion

Definition of Inclusion:

"Providing to all students, including those with significant disabilities, equitable opportunities to receive effective educational services, with needed supplementary aids and support services, in age-appropriate classes in their neighborhood schools, in order to prepare students for productive lives as full members of society."

National Center on Educational Restructuring and Inclusion (1)

Benefits from Inclusion have been researched and documented (Judy S. Itzkowitz, PhD, 6/98). First and foremost, students with disabilities and general education students will gain preparation for living in the greater community. They will gain enhanced attitudes toward people with disabilities. Also, students will add to their sensitivity, acceptance, and appreciation of diversity, disability and differences among people. Students will find they are less uncomfortable with people with disabilities after spending time daily in such activities as learning and socializing (lunch, enrichment classes, homeroom, and dismissal). All students will increase their learning and make gains in academic and social skills. Students will find improvement in flexibility, empathy and increased responsiveness to other children. Children and even their parents will increase their awareness of other children's needs. Someday, one never knows, but if a student has the misfortune to have to deal with disability in their own lives this experience will increase their preparedness to deal with that. Self-esteem will be increased after having the positive experience of supporting another person. Also, students have learned how to work together as a group or team when facing a challenge.

Intellectual Disabilities

Definitions:

The Connecticut State Department of Education has recently defined a person with an Intellectual Disability (ID) as a person with significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior.

Adaptive behavior is the collection of skills that have been learned by people in order to function in their daily lives. The person with an Intellectual Disability has trouble expressing him/her, and following directions given. Also, they have difficulty with Social or Interpersonal skills. This means the person may have difficulty with things like responsibility, self-esteem, gullibility (vulnerability to being tricked or manipulated), naiveté, ability to follow rules, ability to obey laws, and the ability to avoid victimization. Practical skills, or daily living skills are also deficient. When eating, toileting, or dressing the person may require assistance. Meal preparation, housekeeping, using public transportation, taking medication, managing money, or using the telephone may also be areas of weakness where the person would need help. Occupational skills, necessary for meaningful work; and maintaining safe environments are other areas which may be deficient.

Connecticut State Department of Education Guidelines (2)

The Federal Definition of Intellectual Disabilities varies a little from the current definition the State of Connecticut Department of Education uses:

Significantly sub-average general intellectual functioning, existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the developmental period that adversely affects a child's educational performance. (3)

Intellectual Functioning is related to the spontaneous application of thinking and problem solving strategies as well as volitional control of their application to everyday situations. (4)

Protection of Students with Intellectual Disabilities:

The federal Bureau of Education for the Handicapped was established when the first comprehensive Federal Law was passed to protect Special Needs students. Prior to this time, students who needed Special Education (specialized instruction to address special learning needs) often did not receive the help they needed and worse than that, often were mistreated with no recourse.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) was first enacted in 1975 and has been revised several times. This federal law was adopted and adapted by the State of Connecticut. The most recent re-authorization by Congress was signed into law in 2004.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) of 2004 was passed almost unanimously by the United States Congress on November 20, 2004. The law went into effect on July 1, 2005. The new law also reinforces the mandates of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) federal law, protecting students with disabilities and emphasizing accountability. Students with Disabilities, specifically, will have access to the General Education curriculum (that all students are taught.)

Because of these laws, school districts must provide to every student a "Free and Appropriate Public Education" (FAPE) which means that parents and students can go to a Due Process Hearing if school and family disagree. Because some families chose to use this process, a recent class action law suit was settled (The "PJ Case") in which students with Intellectual Disabilities were promised a chance to be educated with their "Non Disabled Peers" to the "maximum extent appropriate". The right to be educated in the General Education setting along side their Typical Peers" (Inclusion) has been guaranteed.

Schools must obtain signed consent from parents before providing Special Education and related services to the child.

Testing the Law

All teachers in Connecticut must become familiar with the legal expectations of teaching students with Intellectual Disabilities.

The class action case, P.J. ET AL (Plaintiffs) v. State of Connecticut, Board of Education, ET AL (Defendants), became famous in the last decade. Because of the decision in the "PJ Case", we are all now required to teach students identified with Intellectual Disabilities, in our classrooms.

This case was filed in 1991 by five school-age children with mental retardation and their families and was certified as a class action lawsuit on December 13, 1993. The court approved the settlement on May 22, 2002.

The class includes all school-age children with the label mental retardation/intellectual disability on or after February 20, 1991, who are not educated in regular classrooms.

This class action suit was tried and settled in Federal Court in regards to students with "Intellectual Disabilities" (ID). School districts must now meet the following 5 goals:

1. To reduce the disparate identification of students with Intellectual Disabilities. African American students, especially boys, were over-identified. Upon re-examination, school teams found students who really were not Intellectually Disabled.
2. To increase the percent of students with Intellectual Disabilities who are placed in Regular Education classes. Being included in Regular Education classes is mandatory.
3. To increase the mean and median percent of the school day that students with Intellectual Disabilities spend with Non Disabled students. ID students must spend increasing amounts of time in the Regular Education class with peers of their same age.
4. To increase the percent of students with Intellectual Disabilities who attend the school they would attend if not disabled (home school.) No longer were students to be sent to a different school, outside their neighborhood, to be educated.
5. To increase the percent of students with I.D. who participate in school sponsored extra-curricular activities with Non Disabled peers. ID kids could go to all school dances, clubs and activities and in fact, would be encouraged to do so.

During State Department of Education "Walkthrough Reviews" of students Individualized Education Programs (IEP), the following indicators are to be observed: Each observable indicator is recorded. If there is sufficient evidence of the indicator, the observer awards one point. If there is little or no evidence of the indicator, there is no point awarded (zero):

INDICATORS #1 -6:

1. The student is seated within the same seating structure as the other students in the room. (Conversely: Student is in a study carrel, separate seat apart from the regular group, or back of the room.)

2. The general education teacher is the main provider of the instruction or assessment or as a part of a co-teaching support, in partnership with the special education teacher. (A paraprofessional or other adult may be available to assist the student when necessary, but the student is viewed as attentive to the teacher and the teacher is attentive to the student.) (Conversely: Student is being taught by a paraprofessional or special ed teacher and is not part of the regular classroom instruction/lesson.)

3. Student is engaged in the same curricular activity as the other members of the class. (The material/instruction may be accommodated or the content/performance accommodated or modified for student's needs but these do not change the intent or nature of the activity from the grade level standard.)(Conversely: Student is engaged in a separate unrelated activity or different content area. Student's activity is weakly connected to the grade level standard, more superficial in nature.)

4. The general education teacher or the general education-special education co-teachers check for the student understanding of the concept (rather than another adult in the room assuming total responsibility for checking the student's understanding.) (Conversely: Para or special ed teacher who is not teaching the lesson checks for understanding. The special ed teacher is not part of a dynamic co-teaching arrangement.)

5. Peer assistance is occurring as appropriate to the culture of the classroom (if students are permitted to assist each other, than this is also occurring for the student being observed.)(Conversely: Student is assisted by paraprofessional of the teacher rather than a peer, or student receives no help at all from peer/s.)

6. Peer interactions between the student and peers are comparable to other students in the class (student engages peers and peers engage the student.) (Conversely: Student does not attempt to interact with peer or makes an attempt to engage a peer who does not respond to him/her. Peer engages the student but student does not respond or responds inappropriately.)

Vocabulary related to PJ Case:

1. Intellectually Disabled: Previously identified as Mentally Retarded

2. Non-disabled Peers: Regular Education or General Education Students

3. TWNDP: Time with Non Disabled Peers; time spent in Regular Education class with students of the same age.

4. Modify: Adjust curriculum

5. Accommodate: To assist with access to educational content

6. Due Process: A process where school and families come to a settlement when there is a disagreement. Hearing officers may hear both parents' and school's "sides" of the rationale for placing the student in a certain program. (5)

Down Syndrome (an Intellectual Disability):

Down Syndrome is a syndrome caused by a genetic anomaly, which can be diagnosed at birth. A child with Down Syndrome has various physical abnormalities. These include "almond - shaped" eyes, a short neck and an oversized tongue, short stature and unusual flexibility in the joints. Cognitive deficits or levels of mental retardation vary from mild to moderate to severe. (6)

Many years ago, students with Down Syndrome were taken from their families at a very young age and institutionalized until their death (usually after age 45). In the United States, when parents were told their baby had Down Syndrome, they were often advised to place their child in an institution. Up until about 20 years ago, places like Southbury Training School in Southbury, CT and the New Haven (CT) Regional Center educated a few children and adults who may have lived at home, and a majority of their students resided there, at the school. Families might visit or take their adult child or adult sibling out for a day or two for a special occasion. The New Haven Regional Center no longer exists in that capacity.

Currently in Connecticut, families of students with an Intellectual Disability receive varied forms of support. The Department of Mental Retardation (DMR), a state agency, may assign a case workers to assist families. A DMR worker may attend school meetings with the parent of an ID student. Case workers help parents manage their student at home.

DMR offers a Respite Program to allow parents to take a break or a rest from the ongoing role of parent. Respite can be provided for an afternoon, an evening or weekend. Someone may come to stay at the student's house or respite may take place in the home of a friend, relative, neighbor or trained respite provider.

High School students will have Pre-Vocational goals included in their Individual Education Program (IEP) which relate to future job tasks. Students are expected to learn and practice skills they will need for possible jobs in the workforce. These tasks may include cleaning, cooking or child care skills.

Connecticut's current special education requirements mandate school teams to formally plan for teenage students' transitions to life after High School graduation (at age 21). Transition Plans are designed and included in a student's academic plan in order to prepare for life after public school. Students and parents are interviewed about possible vocational goals for adult life. Each year the plan is reviewed and refined.

to top


Lessons:

Lesson One

Part One: Disability Awareness/ Self Reflection

I will ask the students to listen and just think about the following questions:

I will read them slowly, and pause for about 30 seconds after each one.

1. Do you know someone who has a special need that they face every day of their life?
2. Do you know students who are not as capable as you are in Physical Education in the gym?
3. Do you have a relative, friend, neighbor who has difficulty completing daily living tasks like cooking, cleaning, dressing?
4. Do you have friends or a classmate who can do Math, or shoot a basketball better than you?

Discussion:

I will lead a discussion of question number 3 and 4 in a personal way. I will ask students to speak about their feelings and their answers. Then we will list some of the student responses on the board. I will give my own personal examples and write them on the board. The discussion will continue with asking the students to think about how they would fill in these blanks:

"I can help with. . .. . .. . ..."

"I need help with. . .. . .. . ."

Each student will then receive two different sentence strips, one of each of two different colors. The students will spend about 20 minutes writing their thoughts on the two sentence strips, with pencil first, and then tracing over with marker or crayon. I expect that some students will have difficulty really reflecting on their own strengths and weaknesses and perhaps a student will use the same phrase as his neighbor. (For example, "I can help my little cousin with his Math homework.")

We will hang the sentence strips up on the board or on a wall for all to share, in two separate areas. The teacher will have two headings, one for each of the two areas ready:

"These are the things we NEED HELP with."

"These are the things we CAN HELP with."

Each student can have two pieces of tape or a thumb tack with which to hang his/her own sentence strips if the teacher allows. This physical activity is a good way to engage the students and keep their interest and excitement.

All areas where students need help will become apparent; all areas students feel competent will also be grouped together.

Students will be asked to read their sentence to the class if there is time. I will underscore the fact that the real private feelings of our strengths and weaknesses may be difficult for us to think of. And, most important, each of us in the room must be supportive and not tease one another when we each read the areas in which we need help.

Part Two: Disability Awareness / Hearing Impaired girl

I will introduce Children's Literature for reading and response to text. I have chosen the book, I Have a Sister, My Sister is Deaf, by Jeanne Peterson. This book is a short, 14 page book with black and white line drawings of the two sisters. The older sister is the narrator of this story about her five year old younger sister who is Hearing Impaired.

( Application was made to purchase 25 copies of this book through YNHTI)

I am planning that 25 copies will be available, so students can read the book to themselves while I read aloud. During the story, the older sister is able to interpret the actions and simple sign language her sister uses. She explains to the reader that her sister is capable of expressing herself in many ways. She also shares the meaning of many of the sister's actions that others may not understand.

I will read the book to the class while each student follows along with a personal copy of the book.

Response to text: After reading the book, students will read this question and write their answers:

The older sister of the Hearing Impaired/Deaf girl understands everything her sister does. She explains her sister's actions to their friends.

What does she tell others? How do you know that she truly knows all about her sister's life? Use examples from the text to show that the older sister understands what her sister feels and why she does the things she does.

Homework:

The books may be sent home for each student to read to his/her family. Also, I may assign the students to read and DISCUSS this book with their family. Written "Family Homework" may be assigned, where a parent/guardian will sit and answer questions like the following four questions from Lesson One/Part One.

1. Do you know someone who has a special need that they face every day of their life?

2. Do you know students who are not as capable as you are in Physical Education in the gym?

3. Do you have a relative, friend, neighbor who has difficulty completing daily living tasks like cooking, cleaning, dressing?

4. Do you have friends or a classmate who can do Math, or shoot a basketball better than you?

Note for Teachers of grades 5 and 6:

Welcome Home, Jellybean, by Marlene Fanta Shyer, Aladdin Paperbacks, Simon & Shuster, NY, 1978 (152 pp.) is recommended. For older students, this novel for students aged 9 -12 is about a boy whose family decides to take their teenage daughter home from a residential school. The sister has cognitive challenges which greatly impact her life, but her parents, not happy with the living situation at the school take their 13 year-old daughter home to live. The story is told from the perspective of the brother.

Spaceman, by Jane Cutler, Dutton Children's Books, New York, New York, 1997 (138 pp.) is recommended as another source of fiction for older students. This fast-paced and authentic novel is about a boy with multiple learning problems. This book promises to change the way readers think about their classmates.

Part Three: Buddy Read

I will enlist the help of a partner teacher who teaches a younger group/ lower grade. For example, a Third Grade class may partner with a Kindergarten or First grade class. Then, each student will meet the younger student who will be a partner in a Buddy Read. The older student will sit with his/her partner and read the book Time should be given for the two students to briefly discuss the book.

If the classrooms are small, this activity may take place in a larger setting, such as the Library/ Media Center. A second arrangement can be: I will divide my students into two groups, Group A and Group B. The younger class will also be divided. Group A from Third Grade can meet with Group A from First grade in the Third Grade room. Group B Third Graders can meet with Group B First graders in the First Grade Room.

Part Four: Inclusion

I will ask the students:

Did you know that students with disabilities can look just like everyone else? If someone has a COGNITIVE disability, or one affecting his/her thinking or learning, s/he may look and act similarly or differently from other kids. Most often, people may suspect a person has a cognitive or INTELLECTUAL disability when s/he looks, speaks or acts differently. When you are out at the park or out at the grocery store, do you see people who you suspect are handicapped or disabled in some way?

I will continue asking and students will discuss:

1. Do we INCLUDE all students in our school? In our classroom?

2. What does the word EXCLUDE (the opposite of INCLUDE) mean?

3. What does it mean when you and your friend EXCLUDE another child from playing a game with you?

4. Have you ever been EXCLUDED from a game or activity by others?

A. I will use this as a written response activity where the students will write a brief answer to each of the above four questions.

B. Or, this can be used as a class discussion activity.

C. Also, if the teacher desires, she can pair the students up. Two students will sit together, one will ask the other and the other can answer. Then the two will switch tasks and after that, the teacher will lead a whole class discussion

D. Family homework: Students may be asked to bring these four questions home to discuss and write answers with a parent/guardian or older sibling.

Then, I will introduce the "Inclusion law" named "IDEA" of 2004, (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) the Federal Law. I will tell the students that this law protects students with disabilities, so that they will all have access to the General Education curriculum, the subjects that all students are taught. They will not be isolated or taught in a separate setting all day away from the other students. They will not be sent away to a "special" school. They will not be taught in the basement in a corner classroom.

Because of this law our school district must make sure that every student has the right to study along side his/her Typical or Non-Disabled Peers and learn in the same General Education setting with all of the other students.

Then I will read the definition of Intellectual Disability.

"Significantly sub-average general intellectual functioning, existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the developmental period that adversely affects a child's educational performance." (3)

To make comprehension of the above definition easier I will use these simple definitions:

Sub average means below average.

Intellectual functioning means thinking and problem -solving ability.

Developmental period means during childhood.

Adverse affect means making a problem for the person.

Then I will say: "Students with cognitive or thinking and learning disabilities, including "Intellectual Disabilities", may look and act differently from other kids. Sometimes, students may know or suspect if classmates have a severe Intellectual Disability by the way they look, act and learn."

I will ask students: "What do you think it means to INCLUDE all students?"

Volunteers will read answers to the above four questions about being Included and being Excluded.

After discussion, I will read the following definition:

Inclusion:

"Providing to all students, including those with significant disabilities, equitable opportunities to receive effective educational services, with needed supplementary aids and support services, in age-appropriate classes in their neighborhood schools, in order to prepare students for productive lives as full members of society."
National Center on Educational Restructuring and Inclusion (1)
We will discuss any unfamiliar words that students mention.

Lesson Two

Part One:

Responsibility and Caregiving:

In order to further take the perspective of a disabled young person, our students will read passages from the non-fiction book:

Being the Other One, Growing up with a Brother or Sister Who Has Special Needs, (Strohm, Chapter 7)

Growing Up Fast pages 81 through 83

Finding the Positives page 86

For students who will have difficulty with the readability level (which is approximately Fifth Grade level) have students read teacher-prepared readings quoting siblings' thoughts from Chapter 7.

See "Appendix" (before the Bibliography) for the page of siblings' quotations.

After reading the accounts of brothers and sisters who have cared for their siblings with disabilities, the students will write reflections of how they felt.

Part Two:

I will introduce the students to a second non-fiction book. We will read personal accounts of two teenage students with Down syndrome, Jason and Mitchell. The book includes their parents' perspectives, in their book, Count Us In, Growing Up with Down Syndrome. This book is organized in interview format (Question and Answers) .

I will photocopy pages 63 -65 from Chapter 6, "Having Fun" and pages 142-144 from Chapter 12, "Becoming Independent" so that each student can read the interviews. Because these two students are writing from the perspective of young adults, our students will see how an adult with a cognitive deficit may live an independent life.

After completing the reading, I will ask the students to imagine how the author's mothers prepared the interview questions for this book. The questions covered many aspects of the lives of these young men, from childhood to the present.

Each student will compose one or two questions for a "Mock Interview" which s/he will have the opportunity to ask Jason and Mitchell, if given a hypothetical opportunity to meet one of the authors of this book. This question could be posed to another young person or young adult with Down Syndrome, similar to the two who were quoted in this book.

Then the students will read their questions aloud to the class. Other students can offer suggestions for the possible answers to their fellow students' questions.

Lesson Three

Culminating Activity:

I will ask that each student close his/her eyes for one minute in order to think and reflect upon what they have learned over these past lessons. I will ask them to choose the most important new fact they have learned.

After they open their eyes, I will ask for volunteers to raise their hands and then share with all of us the one new fact they have learned about Cognitive Disabilities, Inclusive Education, and Down syndrome. This one fact should be the MOST important information they have learned because they will be asked to share it with others.

After listening to each other, each student will choose the one thought or idea to share with other students or adults in our school. Hopefully, there will be no duplication of ideas. Each student will draw a poster with one or two sentences or a motto to teach to be printed at the top or bottom of the poster. The picture can be a drawing or a collage or any other creative media, in order to share this new idea/knowledge.

Since Celentano Museum Academy presents four quarterly Museum Night/Days (after the conclusion of each marking quarter), posters will be displayed and explained.

Other culminating student products might be:

Typed mock interviews with ID adults can be displayed and shared.

Literature that we read can be summarized in a few typed paragraphs and shared

to top


Appendix

Quotes from Chapter Seven of

Being the Other One, Growing up with a Brother or Sister Who Has Special Needs: (Stroehm, 2005)

Growing Up Fast (p.81)

Tara felt the ongoing pressures.

Adults always told me I was so mature for my age, so good to be spending time with my brother and helping my mother. I hated those comments so much. I just wanted to be a child.

As an older and only able sibling, I developed an extraordinary sense of responsibility for family and friends. I limit my friends, as I can't cope with the "obligation" I feel if the number of people close to me is too large .

I have learned that as a child I internalized the need always to be okay, to be self-reliant and never need or accept help. It is a difficult lesson to unlearn, and the repercussions as an adult - social and emotional isolation - are devastating.

A child's reactions may change over time. Nance started to feel differently as she approached her teens.

When I was very small, until perhaps eight or nine, I remember seeing myself as my brothers' little protector and being praised by every one of my parents' friends for being such a good girl looking after my brother. Then as I approached my teens, I remember feeling overwhelmed by what I then saw as a burden. I did not have a brother I could play softball with, confide in, or have what I saw as the "normal" relationship all my friends had with their siblings.

Finding the Positives ( p.86)

Josie talks of bonding with her brother.

I truly think that taking care of my brother helped me better understand my parents and my brother. And I connected with him and bonded with him in a way that I never would have, had I not had the responsibility of watching over him. Now I am the only person that he lets hang all over him and hug him for long amounts of time. We take car rides and only with me does he sit up front. With my parents he sits in the back because he grabs the steering wheel or gear shift, but with me he just sits in the seat and smiles and rocks back and forth to the loud music that my parents probably don't play.

to top


Teachers' Bibliography

Websites

Connecticut State Department of Education,

www.csde.gov

Books

Kingsley, Jason and Mitchell Levitz, Count Us In, Growing Up with Down Syndrome, Harcourt, Inc., New York, 1994

Peterson, Jeanne Whitehouse, I have a Sister, My Sister is Deaf, Harper Collins Publishers, New York, 1977

Stroehm, Kate, Being the Other One, Growing up with a Brother or Sister Who Has Special Needs, Shambhala, Boston, 2005

Journals

Teaching Exceptional Children

Articles

"Executive Summary: Guidelines for Identifying Children with Intellectual Disability, 2006", Connecticut State Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education

"IDEA Reauthorization 2004", presented by Attorney Marsha Belman Moses, New Haven Public Schools, Professional Development Training, November 8, 2005

Pupils get chance to walk in others' shoes, by Elizabeth Benton, New Haven Register,

March 2, 2007

Connecticut State Department of Education. (2000) Guidelines for Identifying Children with Intellectual Disability, Hartford, CT:

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act as amended by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004, 20 U.S.C. Chapter 33.

to top


Student Bibliography

Kingsley, Jason and Mitchell Levitz, Count Us In, Growing Up with Down Syndrome, Harcourt, Inc., New York, 1994

This book changes stereotypes about Down syndrome when it exposes the feelings of two young men, ages 19 and 22, who share their thoughts, feelings, hopes and dreams. It is organized as an interview of the two young men, their mothers and their fathers.

Peterson, Jeanne Whitehouse, I have a Sister, My Sister is Deaf, Harper Collins Publishers, New York, 1977

A narrative from the perspective of an older sibling, this story tells about a five year old hearing impaired girl and her daily life. It gives insights from the perspective of a child to other children.

Stroehm, Kate, Being the Other One, Growing up with a Brother or Sister Who Has Special Needs, Shambhala, Boston, 2005

The author's experience as the sibling of a sister with cerebral palsy makes her an expert on being an "able" sibling. The book gives practical advice, support and insight.

Shyer, Marlene Fanta, Welcome Home, Jellybean, Aladdin Paperbacks, Simon & Shuster, NY, 1978

A novel for students aged 9 -12 about a boy whose family decides to take their teenage daughter home from a residential school. The sister has cognitive challenges which greatly impact her life, but her parents, not happy with the living situation at the school, take their 13 year-old daughter home to live. The story is told from the perspective of the brother.

Spaceman, by Jane Cutler, Dutton Children's Books, New York, New York, 1997 (138 pp)

This fast paced and authentic novel is about a boy with multiple learning problems. This book promises to change the way readers think about their classmates.

to top


Notes

(1) National Center on Educational Restructuring and Inclusion; The Graduate Center, The City University of New York, 365 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York 10016-4309
(2) Connecticut State Department of Education. (2006) Guidelines for Identifying Children with Intellectual Disability, Hartford, CT:
(3) Individuals with Disabilities Education Act as amended by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004. 20 U.S.C. Chapter 33.
(4) "Best Practices for ID students enrolled in Regular Education 2007", New Haven Student Services Department, Workshop presented in preparation of State Department of Education Walkthrough Review
(5) "Best Practices for ID students enrolled in Regular Education 2007", New Haven Student Services Department, Workshop presented in preparation of State Department of Education Walkthrough Review
(6) www.eaglemountbillings.org/html/Disabilities%20Definitions.htm)

to top


Implementing District and State Standards

This appendix lists in annotated fashion the New Haven Public School's district and state Literacy standards which this unit will implement.

Fourth Generation CMT Objectives

Literacy

Forming a General Understanding: Understanding the text's general content

A3: Select and use relevant information from the text in order to summarize events and /or ideas in the text.

Developing an Interpretation: Interpreting and/or explaining the text

B3: Use stated or implied evidence from the text to draw and/or support a conclusion

Making Reader/Text Connections: Connecting or associating the text with life outside the text

C2: Select, synthesize and/or use relevant information within a written work to write a personal response to the text

to top

Contents of 2007 Volume V | Directory of Volumes | Index | Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute

© 2014 by the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Terms of Use Contact YNHTI