This is my fourth year teaching in a self-contained, special education classroom. My students have a wide range of disabilities and as such their academic levels are across the board. While they are in 4th, 5th, and 6th grade, I generally teach in an academic range of pre-academic to 2nd grade. I taught a Sunday school class for 3 year olds for eight years and led a small group of high school girls through our church's youth group. The various teaching experiences have contributed to a more thorough understanding of kids across developmental stages.
I thrive to be organized. I have three assistants in my classroom that I could not run my classroom without. It is my responsibility to make sure that my students are making progress on their goals and I cannot do that without my wonderful assistants. I try to be as efficient as possible to help them be the extension of my hands and feet. While my students may be "low" academically, they are still "big kids". I strive to find a balance of giving them academic experiences that are academically appropriate and not babyish. I therefore spend a lot of time modifying and creating. My worksheets are often straightforward, working on single or few skills with a LOT of repetition. The skills are basic, and often foundational. You will not find a whole lot of clipart or "cutesy" items in my work, not because I don't love it, (I do) but because I want to build my student's confidence. I ask them to behave like "big kids", I better treat them as such.
While I haven't won any specific awards, having a parent approach me with tears of joy in their eyes to thank me for all I have done for their child is irreplaceable. My students don't always have the means to communicate appreciation, but when a parent shares success stories with me about things their child is doing that they had never even dreamed they could do, it reminds me why I do what I do. In Special Ed, I really believe that in many ways it is just as much about the families as it is about the students and their successes are so so rewarding.
I graduated from Eastern Washington University with a BA in K-12 Special Education fall of 2011. I began subbing in January and received the call to be a long-term substitute in February. I have been in that classroom ever since. I began working on my master's degree during the fall of 2013 at Whitworth University. I am continuing my education in special education, with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis.
I married the love of my life a couple summers ago after dating for four years. My husband and I are happily enjoying the married life. We are both actively involved in our church, where he is a music director. Running is my stress-reliever, especially after a particularly "naughty" day from the kiddos. :) My students are my world. They are what I spend most of my time on. My job is tough, but I love my kiddos with all my heart.
English Language Arts, Balanced Literacy, Creative Writing, Reading, Grammar, Spelling, Specialty, Math, Basic Operations, Other (Math), Special Education, Other (Specialty), Other (ELA), Life Skills, For All Subject Areas, Writing, Holidays/Seasonal, Back to School, Speech Therapy, Place Value, End of Year, Phonics