This course will teach you how to meet the diverse needs of students with disabilities in your classroom. With lessons developed by an experienced special educator, you will explore the special education process, from working with individualized education programs (IEPs) to helping students struggling with reading comprehension, math skills, and writing. In this course, you will discover easy, practical, and creative strategies that will help your struggling students find their light bulb moments.
You will also discover fun games you can incorporate, tips for modifying your classroom, and many tested methods for bringing out the best behavior in your students. Whether you are in the classroom, studying for the Praxis Special Education exam, or preparing to work with students in a variety of settings, this course will help you to understand and empower your students with learning disabilities.
Note: To receive 25 hours of instruction in the State of Oregon, please ensure your school is eligible to issue professional development units, and that the course is approved by your professional learning coordinator.
Understanding Learning Disabilities
One in seven Americans has a learning disability. That means that in your class of 28 students, four could have significant trouble keeping up with the basics. Your first lesson investigates what learning disabilities (LDs) are and defines some common types that you may often see in the classroom.
Identifying Students with LDs
Is Tamara having trouble with reading because it’s not her favorite subject, or is something else going on? The process of identifying students with LDs is a long and sometimes tedious one, which is what you will learn about in this lesson.
Making Sense of the IEP
This lesson explores individualized education programs (IEPs), which are road maps that guide the learning curve of every child with LDs. Once you know how to decode the language and the sections, it’s easy to start using IEPs as the helpful tools they are meant to be.
Understanding Service Locations
This lesson focuses on common service locations that help students with LDs meet educational goals. Students with LDs receive IEP-mandated services in a number of ways. Whether learn in their classroom or the special education room, they will learn a bit differently than other students.
Learning the Right Teaching Strategies
In this lesson, you will learn about teaching strategies that make learning memorable for students with LDs. The right teaching strategies spell out the difference between a creative, engaging classroom and one that stagnates without reaching most of its students.
Helping Students With Word Identification Problems
Word identification problems can make “cat” look like “can” or “pan.” Imagine how hard it would be to read all the wrong words in all the right places. In this lesson, you will discover smart strategies to help student find their words.
Helping Students With Reading Comprehension Problems
For students who have trouble reading, it’s hard enough to just get the words right. But to pair those words with their meaning is a seemingly insurmountable task. In this lesson, you will learn how to chunk information, so students can understand what they’re reading and fall in love with texts.
Helping Students With Written Expression Problems
Writing poses quite a few challenges for students with LDs — some may have trouble holding their pencils, and others find it difficult to communicate. This lesson takes a tour of strategies that bring writing to life for students who often don’t even realize all the neat things they have to say.
Helping Students With Math Reasoning and Calculation Problems
Many students with LDs dread math because math requires various skills to come together seamlessly: reasoning, logic, number sense, writing, and computation are all key. In this lesson, you will learn how to make all those numbers a little easier for students with LDs to manipulate.
Modifying Your Classroom
Even though the IEP gives you a general idea of how to help your students with LDs, you will still need to explore new, innovative ideas to modify your classroom, assignments, and tests. In this lesson, you will learn modifications that may spell success for students with LDs who need a push in the right direction.
Managing Student Behavior
We’ve all had days when going to school was a drag. Students with LDs are no different. Because school forces them to tackle big challenges head on, it’s often their least favorite thing to do. This can lead to behavior problems that you will have to defuse creatively, which is what this lesson covers.
Linking Home and School
The connection between home and school is a powerful predictor of classroom success for students with LDs. Your final lesson focuses on the best ways to conduct meaningful parent-teacher conferences that help everyone unite behind a child with LDs in need.
Prerequisites / Requirements
There are no prerequisites to take this course.
- This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac device. A few Windows-specific examples are included. Mac students are welcome, but may not be able to duplicate all examples.
- PC: Windows XP or later.
- Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
- Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
- Adobe Flash Player. Click here to download the Flash Player.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
- Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.
- Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
When can I get started?
Instructor-Led: A new session of each course begins each month. Please refer to the session start dates for scheduling.
Self-Paced: You can start this course at any time your schedule permits.
How does it work?
Instructor-Led: Once a session starts, two lessons will be released each week, for the 6 week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
Self-Paced: You have three-month access to the course. After enrolling, you can learn and complete the course at your own pace, within the allotted access period.
How long do I have to complete each lesson?
Instructor-Led: The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes 2 weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
Self-Paced: There is no time limit to complete each lesson, other than completing all lessons before your three-month access.
What if I need an extension?
Instructor-Led: The Final Exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the Final Exam has been released, you will have 2 weeks plus 10 days to complete the Final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
Self-Paced: Because this course is self-paced, no extensions will be granted after the start of your enrollment.