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Aiming for Access

June Behrmann

June Behrmann is a longtime special education teacher (pre-K to grade 6) who retired for about two seconds, and is now prospecting for accessible instructional resources. Follow June on Twitter @aimnoncat. Thank you to AIM-VA: Accessible Instructional Materials for sharing this blog with us.

Inclusion: Advice, Keys to Educating Diverse Early Learners with Dual Language + Disabilities

December 8, 2015

The Iris Center announces a new IRISSTAR Legacy Module, Dual Language Learners with Disabilities: Supporting Young Children in the Classroom. It is free online and offers ideas for serving diverse early learners in a classroom where instruction must take into account multiple languages, cultures, diverse learning needs, and backgrounds.

Inclusion In Earnest

Meet the lead teacher with a dilemma, Mrs. Raymond, a third-year teacher at Russell Early Childhood Center. Her inclusive classroom for young children must consider students with and without disabilities who learn together. Students here speak many languages other than English and she wonders how to be more thoughtful and intentional in supporting the children and their families.

The training offers:

  • An overview of certain characteristics of young dual language learners with disabilities, including notes on how to distinguish between disabilities and language differences
  • Keys to collaborating with the families of dual language learners
  • Details about supporting and encouraging the student's and family's home language, and the importance of using that language in the classroom

Also find audio interviews with experts:

  • Irlanda Jimenez, Multicultural Coordinator and bilingual/ESL teacher at Urbana Early Childhood Schools
  • Patsy Pierce, Consultant for the National Center on Cultural and Linguistic Responsiveness, and
  • Rosa Milagros Santos, Professor of Special Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Iris Center materials can be shared freely with colleagues and teachers in training. The center is funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, and Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California. Resources are developed with evidence-based practices and suits both preservice preparation and professional development programs. IRIS disseminates and offers trainings and resources on many topics, so check out the resource locator. For information, contact: Kim Skow or call 800-831-6134.

Thank you to AIM-VA: Accessible Instructional Materials for sharing this blog with our Reading Rockets audience.

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"Reading should not be presented to children as a chore or duty. It should be offered to them as a precious gift." — Kate DiCamillo