Teaching Special Children.

As a teacher, it becomes our responsibility, to teach in such a way that the knowledge is understood and retained for a longer time. It is important to explore where the need will be and then to address them. A special child needs one-to-one approach and has to be repeatedly taught the same thing, over and over again, to bring home the point.

We must make sure that the instructions are given in limited numbers (not more than two things at a time), we have to make the introduction as simple as possible, giving direction verbally, clearly, keeping an eye contact. Sometimes we may need to ask student to repeat the instruction or direction to ensure that understanding has occurred. We have to keep checking by recap to ensure that he/she has not forgotten.

For special children, the assignment has to be simplified to match his ability, or the child might get frustrated if he is not able to cope with a difficult assignment.

It is better to use the concrete methods than an abstract. A visual teaching aid helps the child to remember for a longer time. If he is given counters or objects to do the actual counting for adding and subtraction, it is retained for a longer time. A child can be given a tape recorder to record a poem and hear and sing repeatedly. A child likes a story to be read to him with expressions and sounds because then, they can interact and identify with the story characters.

Tests should be done orally if need be. We could have an assistant to help with evaluation situations. We have to keep in mind that children have short attention span, and the test may be required to be done in small sessions instead of one long one.

It is better to involve the parents in their learning experience so that consistency of ideas can be maintained and there is no contradiction in presenting the facts and confusing the child. Home work can be given to those children who need extra help for additional follow up.

A thing to remember is that every special child is different and same method of teaching cannot be used for every child. A customized teaching method brings better results.