George Lucas Educational Foundation

Any Resource Room (special ed) teachers out there?

Any Resource Room (special ed) teachers out there?

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Hi, I'm a first-year Intervention Specialist. I currently teach at a Catholic high school, running what they call the Academic Support Program. Basically, it's a "resource room" where different groups of kids come in each period w/their work from other classes. It's supposed to be a place where they can do hw, get help, study for tests, etc. ...this is quite difficult though, as all the students are in different grades (9-12) mixed up, all in different classes, VERY different levels of ability, etc. And it's just me w/up to 10 students who are all doing different things at different time and seem to need help at exactly the same moments :) Just checking to see if anyone in the discussion group teaches in this type of setting...resource room, etc, and if anyone can share ideas, tips, etc. for engaging the students, motivating them to do their homework for 88 minute blocks (crazy, I know!!). I'd especially love creative ideas for activities I can do with ALL the students to build vocab/comprehension skills that would somehow work w/the mixed grade levels/classes. Thanks!!

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Lisa Dabbs's picture
Lisa Dabbs
Educational Consultant. Author. Speaker. Blogger.

Have posted your comment on Twitter! Hoping to get some feedback to you.
I'm not a special education expert, but I will begin to resercah some ideas for you as well! Hang in there...hope to get you some support soon.


Nicole's picture

Thank you so much, Lisa!! I will look into the Live Binders, and look fwd to anything you get via Twitter :)

Diane's picture
Special Educator, Learning Center 3-5

Hi Lisa,

I have been a special educator for several years- mostly teaching in self-contained programs and in recent years, the learning center (inclusion/resource) model. Oh.. how I wish I had a big chunk of time to work with my students-- 30 minutes comes & goes quickly.

My suggestions: Structure and group the students as much as possible especially since you have a nice block of time to work with. I would create a routine for students to follow the minute they step in your room. One group of students may start on homework. You may have them form a peer study group so they can work together, if needed while you're focusing on other students. Another group may do some targeted vocabulary/comprehension activities- take advantage of technology here. Another group may have 'check ins' or instructional time with you around their homework, study skills and anything else you feel is important for feedback/follow-through.

To do this, you'll have to take time to teach and guide students through each part of your routine and the expectations before you can really expect them to be independent. Also, use checklists! and have teachers and yourself signoff on them. If needed, this is where you can definitely add some incentives (appropriate to high school)as an extra motivator or simply recognition.

Do you have a weekly time to consult with the regular education teachers? or consistent communication with them? Find out what concepts, skills, vocabulary are being or have been taught? Or where students need the most support, reteaching or modifications? At the high school level, you probably have a long list of teachers -- then I would choose a few to start weekly consults in areas of highest need/priority. You'll figure out what works.

Good luck- hope this is helpful.

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