Tips for Special Education Teachers
While our lesson sequence was specifically designed with students various learning modalities in mind, further modifications are sometimes necessary to make the material even more accessible to students with special needs. Use these tips to enhance the accessibility of your lesson plans.
- Give each student a copy of the lyrics. Preview the lyrics with students before they listen to the songs. You could indicate the key words they should listen carefully for and have students signal (by raising their hands or clapping) when they hear the key words.
- Break the song into a few sections and pause it to review key terms and lyrics before moving on to the next part.
- After you listen to the song, have students sing parts of the lyrics more slowly together.
- Research has shown that students with special needs respond particularly well to peer tutors and group work. Design activities to include heterogeneous group work.
- Integrating kinesthetic activity into your daily lessons will help students with different learning modalities, and it will help maintain focus. Allow students to dance while the songs are playing.
- Review your students IEPs with their parents and counselors to discuss how you can make the appropriate modifications to Flocabulary to match the needs of individual students. If your students have paraprofessionals, meet with them to discuss how to best modify the Flocabulary lesson sequence for their students.
Tips for ELL Teachers
While our lesson sequence was specifically designed with students' various learning modalities in mind, further modifications are sometimes necessary to make the material even more accessible to English Language Learners. Use these tips to enhance the accessibility of your lesson plans.
- One hundred percent student interaction during a lesson is crucial for ELL success, whether it be through interaction with the teacher, the full class or a small group. Make sure that your ELLs have many different opportunities during a lesson to show evidence of material mastery.
- You can enhance meaning for ELLs when you are presenting written or spoken material by using vocal intonation, facial expressions, illustrations, real objects, gestures, restatement, pantomime and sound effects.
- Celebrate your students' diverse backgrounds by encouraging them to bring in examples of literature, magazines or songs in their native languages.
- The Word Up Project is designed to teach Tier 2 words, and songs in content areas are designed to teach specific terms. ELL students may have difficulty with additional words other than the key words. It can be useful to spend extra time reviewing these words.
- Idioms and non-literal language in general can pose a particular challenge for ELLs. Complete this lesson plan.
- When giving exams, you can tell students that if they don't understand words on the test that are not in bold (i.e., the words that are not being tested), they should feel free to ask questions during the exam. Some questions may contain cultural references that are unfamiliar to ELLs, so remind them that they can ask about that as well.