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Early Childhood Special Education-Teaching Strategies
(updated April 2000)

What are some teaching strategies that can be used when working with children with disabilities in early childhood settings?

"Most early childhood educators share a common philosophy that learning environments, teaching practices, and other components of programs that serve young children should be based on what is typically expected of and experienced by children of different ages and developmental stages. programs for children with disabilities may need additional goals in order to ensure the individualized intervention that such children need. The following are components of early childhood special education programs that would support this effort; promote child engagement, independence, and mastery; support families in achieving their individual goals, promote development in all important domains; build and support social competence; facilitate the generalized use of skills; prepare and assist children for normalized life experiences with their families, in school, and in their communities; help children and their families make smooth transitions; and prevent or minimize the development of future problems or disabilities." (From Exceptional Children, An Introduction to Special Education, Fifth edition. Prentice-Hall, Inc.)

Following are links to related ERIC Digests, frequently asked questions (FAQs), and Internet resources, as well as selected citations from the ERIC database and the search terms we used to find the citations.


You can search the ERIC database yourself on the Internet through either of the following web sites:

ERIC Citations

The full text of citations beginning with an ED number (for example, EDxxxxxx) is available:

  • In microfiche collections worldwide; to find your nearest ERIC Resource Collection, point your web browser to: http://ericae.net/derc.htm.
  • For a fee through the ERIC Document Reproduction Service (EDRS): http://edrs.com, service@edrs.com, or 1.800.443.ERIC. (no longer available)

The full text of citations beginning with an EJ number (for example, EJxxxxxx) is available for a fee from:

ERIC Search Terms Used

early childhood education OR preschool education OR early intervention

AND

disabilites

AND

teaching methods OR classroom techniques OR instructional effectiveness

EJ508302 EC611703
Developmentally Appropriate Practice: A Critical Analysis as Applied to Young Children with Disabilities.
Carta, Judith J.
Focus on Exceptional Children, v27 n8 p1-14 Apr 1995
ISSN: 0015-511X
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); REVIEW LITERATURE (070)
Journal Announcement: CIJDEC95
Premises and misconceptions about developmentally appropriate practice (DAP) are discussed, along with how the premises and practices of DAP diverge and overlap with recommended practices for early childhood special education. Instructional strategies that have been effective for teaching young children with disabilities and that follow DAP guidelines are presented.
Descriptors: Developmental Stages; *Disabilities; *Early Childhood Education; Early Intervention; *Educational Practices; Guidelines; Individualized Instruction; Misconceptions; Regular and Special Education Relationship; *Special Education; Student Evaluation; *Teaching Methods; Young Children
Identifiers: *Developmentally Appropriate Programs

ED404839 EC305439
Starting Points: Instructional Practices for Young Children Whose Multiple Disabilities Include Visual Impairment.
Chen, Deborah; Dote-Kwan, Jamie
Blind Childrens Center, Los Angeles, CA. 1995
174p.
Available From: Blind Children's Center, 4120 Marathon Street, Los Angeles, CA 90029; telephone: 800-222-3566; fax: 213-665-3828 ($28).
EDRS Price - MF01/PC07 Plus Postage.
Language: English
Document Type: BOOK (010); NON-CLASSROOM MATERIAL (055)
Geographic Source: U.S.; California
Journal Announcement: RIEJUL97
Target Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
This handbook provides basic information on the needs of young children (ages 3-8) whose multiple disabilities include visual impairments. Chapters address: (1) common disabilities associated with visual impairment, the primary educational needs of these children, and the complexity involved in teaching them; (2) the need for clearly defined program philosophies, goals, and practices to promote meaningful learning opportunities, including meeting exceptional learning needs, involving the child as an active learner, and integrating objectives from various disciplines; (3) procedures to develop and plan instruction that are meaningful to the child and important to the family; (4) selected instructional strategies such as task analysis, chaining and shaping, use of natural cues and instructional prompts, fading, and creating an environment that encourages active participation; (5) strategies for promoting communication with nonverbal children and those who have severe language difficulties; (6) specific adaptations and strategies for working on daily living skills; (7) roles and responsibilities of a behavior support team, orientation and mobility specialists, and an occupational therapist; (8) the development of an instructional program for a 4-year-old child with multiple disabilities, including visual impairment; and (9) strategies for facilitating communication between the special education and regular education teacher. A final chapter details a family's experience in parenting a little boy who is blind and has multiple medical needs.
Descriptors: Behavior Problems; *Communication Skills; *Daily Living Skills; Early Childhood Education; Educational Strategies; *Instructional Development; Interpersonal Communication; *Multiple Disabilities; Occupational Therapy; Regular and Special Education Relationship; Staff Role; Student Needs; Teacher Collaboration; Teaching Methods; *Visual Impairments; Visually Impaired Mobility; *Young Children

EJ518012 EC613027
Group Friendship Activities: An Easy Way to Develop the Social Skills of Young Children.
Cooper, Carolyn S.; McEvoy, Mary A.
TEACHING Exceptional Children, v28 n3 p67-69 Spr 1996
ISSN: 0040-0599
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); NON-CLASSROOM MATERIAL (055)
Journal Announcement: CIJJUN96
Target Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Group friendship activities can help young children with disabilities in preschool programs develop social skills. Suggestions for successful implementation address the size of the group, activity length, choice of activity, selecting expressions of friendship, and participation of individual children.
Descriptors: Class Activities; Classroom Techniques; *Disabilities; *Friendship; *Inclusive Schools; *Interpersonal Competence; *Peer Relationship; Preschool Education; Social Development

EJ518011 EC613026
"Buddy Skills" for Preschoolers.
English, Kris; And Others
TEACHING Exceptional Children, v28 n3 p62-66 Spr 1996
ISSN: 0040-0599
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); NON-CLASSROOM MATERIAL (055)
Journal Announcement: CIJJUN96
Target Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
This article describes an 11-step "buddy" skills training procedure that helps children in an inclusive preschool work and play together more cooperatively. Steps include initial assessment, sensitization, peer training, implementation, positive reinforcement, evaluation, targeting specific interaction skills, teaching interaction skills, and fading.
Descriptors: *Classroom Techniques; Cooperation; *Disabilities; *Inclusive Schools; *Interpersonal Competence; *Peer Relationship; Preschool Children; Preschool Education
Identifiers: *Buddy System

EJ510658 PS524014
Special Needs: Meeting the Needs of the Children.
Hayslip, Whit; And Others
Child Care Information Exchange, n105 p43-62 Sep-Oct 1995
ISSN: 0164-8527
Language: English
Document Type: TEACHING GUIDE (052); JOURNAL ARTICLE (080)
Journal Announcement: CIJJAN96
Presents four articles discussing methods and activities that can help early childhood educators meet the demands of children with special needs. Suggests that helping those children participate in the center's activities can facilitate their social and cognitive development and support their inclusion in society. Creating the appropriate environment and using pertinent technology are discussed.
Descriptors: Classroom Techniques; Disabilities; Early Childhood Education; Early Intervention; Educational Environment; *Educational Practices; *Educational Quality; Outcomes of Education; Peer Relationship; Program Effectiveness; *Social Development; *Special Needs Students; Student Attitudes; Student Needs; Young Children
Identifiers: Attitudes toward Disabled

EJ527717 EC614393
Teacher-Facilitated Microcomputer Activities: Enhancing Social Play and Affect in Young Children with Disabilities.
Howard, Judy; And Others
Journal of Special Education Technology, v13 n1 p36-47 Spr 1996
ISSN: 0162-6434
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); RESEARCH REPORT (143)
Journal Announcement: CIJDEC96
Target Audience: Researchers
Comparison of 8 toddlers and 14 preschool special needs children who participated in teacher-facilitated computer play activities and 15 similar children whose curriculum did not incorporate computer activities found statistically significant differences favoring the experimental group for amount of simple and cooperative social play and positive affect.
Descriptors: *Computer Uses in Education; *Disabilities; Educational Media; *Emotional Development; Instructional Effectiveness; *Play; Preschool Children; Preschool Education; *Social Development; Toddlers

ED393255 EC304699
Using Augmentative and Alternative Communication To Improve Communication for Preschool Handicapped Children.
Kaiser, Lora
Nov 1995
61p.; M.S. Practicum, Nova Southeastern University.
EDRS Price - MF01/PC03 Plus Postage.
Language: English
Document Type: PRACTICUM PAPER (043)
Geographic Source: U.S.; Florida
Journal Announcement: RIEAUG96
This practicum report describes development, implementation, and evaluation of a program which used an augmentative and alternative communication system with six nonverbal preschool children with developmental disabilities attending a special school. An extensive review of the literature on augmentative and alternative communication systems was conducted. A communication system was then developed which utilized communication boards and picture communication symbols, reinforced by use of the symbols throughout the classroom environment. Comparison of data collection sheets at baseline and after 12 weeks of program implementation found that only 1 of the 4 program objectives, ability to follow a picture schedule, was completely met, but improvement in communication was seen in all areas tested. Appendices include data collection sheets and illustrations of sample communication boards.
Descriptors: *Augmentative and Alternative Communication; *Classroom Techniques; Communication Aids (for Disabled); *Communication Disorders; Communication Skills; *Developmental Disabilities; Early Intervention; Interpersonal Communication; Language Acquisition; *Nonverbal Communication; Pictorial Stimuli; Preschool Children; Preschool Education
Identifiers: *Communication Boards

EJ521941 PS524718
Teaching Basic Adaptive Skills to Young Children with Disabilities.
Lowenthal, Barbara
Early Child Development and Care, v115 p77-84 Jan 1996
ISSN: 0300-4430
Language: English
Document Type: POSITION PAPER (120); JOURNAL ARTICLE (080)
Journal Announcement: CIJAUG96
Focuses on methods of teaching toileting and independent eating skills to children with disabilities. Methods for teaching toileting skills include timed toileting, scheduled toileting, and the rapid technique. Methods for teaching self-feeding include systematic instruction, positioning techniques, and adaptive modifications. Notes that both skills enable these children to be more independent and facilitate their acceptance in inclusive settings.
Descriptors: Adaptive Behavior (of Disabled); Behavior Change; *Disabilities; Early Childhood Education; Mainstreaming; *Skill Development; Special Needs Students; Teaching Methods; *Young Children
Identifiers: *Feeding Skills; Inclusion (Education); *Toilet Training

EJ513561 EC612809
What Is This? What Did We Just Do? How Did You Do That?: Teaching Cognitive and Social Strategies to Young Children with Disabilities in Integrated Settings.
Notari-Syverson, Angela R.; And Others
TEACHING Exceptional Children, v28 n2 p12-16 Win 1996
ISSN: 0040-0599
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); PROJECT DESCRIPTION (141)
Journal Announcement: CIJMAR96
Target Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
The Mediated Learning Program (MLP) is a comprehensive preschool curriculum for children with and without disabilities, based on theories of mediated learning, with a mediator facilitating children's thought processes and problem-solving strategies. MLP includes 19 curriculum units broken into specific daily principles or objectives used to teach cognitive and social strategies.
Descriptors: *Cognitive Processes; *Disabilities; Interpersonal Competence; Mainstreaming; *Mediation Theory; Metacognition; *Preschool Curriculum; Preschool Education; Problem Solving; Student Educational Objectives; Teaching Methods; *Thinking Skills
Identifiers: *Mediated Learning Experience

EJ529427 EC614480
Ladders to Literacy: The Effects of Teacher-Led Phonological Activities for Kindergarten Children with and without Disabilities.
O'Connor, Rollanda E.; And Others
Exceptional Children, v63 n1 p117-30 Fall 1996
ISSN: 0014-4029
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); RESEARCH REPORT (143)
Journal Announcement: CIJJAN97
Kindergartners with disabilities (n=31), without disabilities (n=57), and children repeating kindergarten (n=19) were studied to compare the effects of an activity- based phonological instruction. Results indicate that teachers can improve the phonological skills of their students prior to formal reading instruction and that instruction to children with disabilities may need to be more intense.
Descriptors: *Beginning Reading; *Disabilities; Early Intervention; *Instructional Effectiveness; Kindergarten Children; Learning Strategies; *Literacy Education; *Phonology; Primary Education; *Reading Instruction; Reading Skills

EJ542735 EC616158
That Was Then, This Is Now: Transitioning to a Whole Language Classroom.
Sauder, Carol R.
Volta Review, v97 n5 p67-84 Nov 1995
Theme issue: "Communication-Based Learning Communities: Coming To Know by Co- Creating Curriculum."
ISSN: 0042-8639
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); PROJECT DESCRIPTION (141); POSITION PAPER (120)
Journal Announcement: CIJSEP97
Target Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
A teacher of preschool and kindergarten students with hearing impairments recounts her increasing use of whole language, process-oriented teaching methods. Considers the teacher's new role, the classroom environment, use of thematic units, emergent reading, emergent writing, and evaluation.
Descriptors: Beginning Reading; Childrens Writing; Classroom Techniques; *Emergent Literacy; *Hearing Impairments; Kindergarten; Personal Narratives; Preschool Education; Primary Education; Student Centered Curriculum; Student Evaluation; Teacher Role; Teaching Methods; Thematic Approach; *Whole Language Approach

EJ515238 PS524288
Supporting Regular Early Childhood Teachers in Integrating Young Children with Disabilities: A Power Continuum.
Schloss, Patrick J.; And Others
Australian Journal of Early Childhood, v20 n4 p19-29 Dec 1995
Theme issue topic: "Children with Additional Needs."
ISSN: 0312-5033
Language: English
Document Type: NON-CLASSROOM MATERIAL (055); JOURNAL ARTICLE (080)
Journal Announcement: CIJAPR96
Identifies a continuum of instructional strategies to promote the entry of children with moderate-to-severe disabilities into regular preschool classrooms. The continuum is based on the concept of power judgements, which result in the use of strategies that are likely to produce the desired effect with the lowest expenditure of effort, resources, and disruption of teachers and children.
Descriptors: *Classroom Techniques; *Disabilities; *Educational Strategies; Evaluation Criteria; *Inclusive Schools; *Mainstreaming; Preschool Children; Preschool Education; Preschool Teachers; Regular and Special Education Relationship; Student Needs; Teacher Student Relationship
Identifiers: *Special Needs Children

EJ527653 EC614187
Examining the Use of Recommended Language Intervention Practices in Early Childhood Special Education Classrooms.
Schwartz, Ilene S.; And Others
Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, v16 n2 p251-72 Sum 1996
Theme issue: Advances in Communication Intervention: Part One.
ISSN: 0271-1214
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); RESEARCH REPORT (143)
Journal Announcement: CIJDEC96
Target Audience: Researchers
Two studies examined language intervention practices in preschool classrooms that included children with disabilities. Both a descriptive study involving 59 children and a process-product study involving 62 children found that children more frequently exposed to recommended language practices made greater language gains and demonstrated higher rates of engagement and verbalizations.
Descriptors: Classroom Techniques; *Disabilities; Early Childhood Education; *Early Intervention; *Educational Practices; Inclusive Schools; *Instructional Effectiveness; *Language Acquisition; Special Education; *Teaching Methods; Theory Practice Relationship

EJ530686 EC614403
Social Interventions for Head Start Children with Behavioral Risks: Implementation and Outcomes.
Tankersley, Melody; And Others
Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, v4 n3 p171-81 Jul 1996
ISSN: 1063-4266
Language: English
Document Type: JOURNAL ARTICLE (080); RESEARCH REPORT (143)
Journal Announcement: CIJFEB97
Effects of a school-based program to prevent antisocial behaviors that could lead to conduct disorder were assessed among 34 target students and 15 role-model peers in urban Head Start programs. Target students showed patterns of social interaction that began to mirror those of role-model peers, while nonparticipating control group students remained significantly different in their behaviors.
Descriptors: Antisocial Behavior; At Risk Persons; *Behavior Disorders; *Interpersonal Competence; Intervention; Low Income Groups; Outcomes of Treatment; Peer Relationship; Preschool Education; *Prevention; Program Effectiveness; *Role Models; *Social Behavior; Socialization; Student Behavior
Identifiers: *Project Head Start
 

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