I was in a training session for co-teaching yesterday. I thought we were on the right track.
Boy was I wrong… well, kind of.
We were doing some things right. My Special Education teacher and I were doing some things right and some things not so right. We can be so much better and our kiddos will benefit from our corrections! I am so excited to start. :)
The first thing our trainer had us do was to complete the "True Colors" test. I have taken this many times. I always turn out orange. Interesting to me. I keep thinking I am blue..NOPE!!!
I am orange and my co-teacher is gold. One of the things we noticed on the sheet…It says, "Gold is frustrated by Orange." Another interesting thing we found out. :) Actually we get along very well. I think she has more orange in her than she thinks. :)
I will try to summarize the whole day in this post. We will see. :)

Inclusion is a Philosophy, not a PLACE.
I find myself saying that I have the inclusion classroom. Well, I do, but it is not just in the classroom that this is happening.
"When inclusive education is fully embraced. we abandon the idea that children have to become "normal" in order to contribute to the world…We begin to look beyond typical ways of becoming valued members of the community, and in doing so, begin to realize the achievable of providing ALL children with an authentic sense of belonging" (author unknown)

We went over the Five Tenets for Positive Behavioral Support
1. All children are inherently good
2. Adults in the classroom significantly affect the quality of the atmosphere for all students
3. All behavior is an attempt to communicate
4. Power and control re not effective ways to shape children's behavior
4. Treat children as you would like to be treated

These were some big A-Ha moments. The one that got me the most was "All behavior is an attempt to communicate". My classroom is just this. We have some children who are non-verbal and some others that really just want to be loved and can't figure out how to do it without some kind of negative behavior (right now).

We finished talking about the different types of co-teaching models.
One teach, one observe
One teach, one drift
Station teaching
Parallel teaching
Alternate teaching
Teaching together

We definitely do one teach, one drift and alternate teaching. These are easier in our situation to do. We do these all the time. Our goal over the next couple weeks is to try parallel teaching and teaching together, or some kind of variation on these.

The other A-Ha moment was when the instructor said that co-teaching is not the general education teacher emailing a copy of the lesson plans to the special education teacher. OOPS!!!
We are going to be planning together and making sure that all lessons are appropriate for all students and that they will all be learning.

I am very excited to begin this "new" adventure.

How do you co-teach?
What have you found that works?

Have a wonderful day!

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