Providing daily standards-based balanced literacy instruction for learners with complex and multiple disabilities, including deaf-blindness, requires a variety of materials, strategies and differentiation. With this in mind, it is apparent that quality literacy instruction cannot be provided without detailed pre-planning. Plans should include the identification of learning targets based on both academic standards and functional curriculum. The development of differentiated materials in pairing with individualized instructional strategies and interventions is also an integral part of planning.
A goal without a plan is just a wish.
(Antoine de Saint-Exupéry)
What to Do
- Remember that planning for ALL students means that tiers of supports and instructional methods will be needed
- Plan tools and materials for each lesson in advance so that they can be gathered and/or created ahead of time
- Pre-planning directly aligns learning targets and standards to instruction and assessment
- Planning should include both pre and post assessments that are universally designed and tiered so all students can show what they know
- Include student specific accommodations, assistive technology and scaffolds into tiered plans to ensure that IEP requirements are met
- Look to Science and Social Studies standards as they contain concepts that can guide unit themes at each grade band
Things to Consider
- Are the assessments you are using accessible to all of your students so that they can each show what they know?
- Are adapted materials used in teaching each lesson individualized to meet both student needs and strengths?
- Is your activity aligned to learning standards that are an age/grade match for all learners in your class?
- Does your assessment measure student knowledge of the pre-determined learning target/standard?
- How might having a plan change the outcomes for one or more students in your class?
- Why are some students not participating or engaged in class activities? Could access to prepared materials change their ability to participate?