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Group Members:

David Prince s0254029


Georgia Wieland - s0257858
James Smith s0258159
Stephanie Brocklehurst s0257771

Name of Course: EDED11457


Responding to Diversity and Inclusion

Lecturer: Karena Menzie

Topic: Differentiation Strategies (Group Task)

Due Date: Friday 26th September, 2014


Word Count: 1903
Composed of two parts, this essay will demonstrate an understanding of an inclusive practice
and discuss effective strategies that cater for all learning needs, practically those students
with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
and students classified as at risk. Part A will discuss management, teaching strategies and
claimed effective strategies, within the classroom, that cater for all students. Following this,
part B will provide a greater understanding and identify characteristics associated with
ADHD, ADD and at risk students. In addition, part B will differentiate the curriculum and
assess the successfulness in meeting the needs of all students.

Firstly, to assess inclusion, it is imperative to have a clear understanding of each condition.


Someone who portrays characteristics of ADD displays a short attention span, persistent
pattern impulsiveness, poor concentration and sometimes hyperactivity, which is common in
those with ADHD. (Attention deficit disorder Is that the author?, 2014)

The term at-risk is often used to describe students or groups of students who are

considered to have a higher probability of failing academically or dropping out of

school. The term may be applied to students who face circumstances that could

jeopardize their ability to complete school, such as homelessness, , teenage

pregnancy, serious health issues, domestic violence, transiency, or other conditions, or

it may refer to learning disabilities, low test scores, disciplinary problems, grade

retentions, or other learning-related factors that could adversely affect the educational

performance and attainment of some students. (Abbott, 2013)

Part A
To ensure equality throughout the classroom it is vital that the teaching strategies are
delivered in a way that is responsive to all students needs, including those students with
disabilities. For students who are diagnosed with ADD, ADHD or are classified as at risk,
school can be a confronting environment and because of such, inclusivity is an imperative
practice. By ensuring that the classroom environment is one where all students have equal
learning opportunities, those with disabilities develop a positive understanding of themselves
and others. (PBS parents, 2014)
Co-teaching is a popular strategy, among secondary classrooms, that emphasises the
inclusion of all students, especially disability and at risk students. Through having two
professional educators, or teaching aides, within the classroom, servicing a heterogeneous
group of students, stastics statistics have shown an improvement in twenty-first century
teaching. A study conducted in 2003, which aimed to measure the improvement of co-
teaching classrooms, demonstrated that more than half of the studied students showed an
academic enhancement (Magiera, 2005). Through these studies, it is evident that co-teaching
is successful however, a large percent of students do not benefit from this strategy.

By minimising the teacher to student ratio, co-teaching provides a positive social relationship
within the classroom. By utilising this technique in classrooms, expectations are more clearly
stated and students are more heavily aided which builds the students self-esteem, gives them
a more positive outlook on their education and promotes a sense of well-being and inclusion
(Magiera, 2005). Through providing additional aides, the quality of education and care is
increased for all students. Good point

Another teaching strategy which benefits all students, regardless of disabilities, and
specifically students classified as at risk is one-on-one teaching (Queensland Government
Health, 2013). One-on-one teaching is the practice of a teacher sitting in an average
classroom setting with one student, whom is their main focus. This strategy aims to improve
students confidence, ability and concentration. Through working with a student, one-on-one,
their confidence is built as their understanding of the task increases. With higher confidence
levels, students become more engaged, which increases concentration levels, and, with
teacher assistance, students academic ability is enhanced (Queensland Government Health,
2013).

One-on-one teaching provides a more inter-personal relationship between students and


teachers. By working closely together to achieve one goal, students feel a connection with
teachers and build trust and respect for one another. By having the teachers full attention,
students feel they belong in the classroom and that their presence is appreciated. Through
one-on-one teaching students understand the content and succeed in their schoolwork.

Using rewards and praise, within the classroom, is another strategy that can benefit students,
practically students with ADHD and at risk students. Using rewards such as free time, fun
activities, prize incentives and praise such as congratulating and encouraging students can be
affective within the classroom. Through students having something to work towards and
celebrating once it is accomplished, students self-esteem is improved which empowers them
to continue to achieve (Porter, 2009). However, contradictory to this, Porter (2009) believes
that praise and rewards can have a negative effect, these rewards run four risks: to
childrens self-esteem, to their intrinsic motivation, to their perfectionism, and to their
orientation to learning and to challenge. Porter (2009) argues that rewards do not encourage
students to like learning but rather to like rewards. This strategy can have both negative and
positive effects within the classroom. Good to explore both sides

Through rewards and praise, students feel the teacher is appreciative of their work and
notices their achievements which builds a strong relationship. Through encouragement an
inclusive environment is established where a sense of belonging is established. As students
self-esteem improves so does their contribution within the classroom. This inspires students
to work hard and have a quality education, through student and teacher contribution, this is
achieved.

The key to starting the school year off right is to establish solid classroom routines and
procedures for everything you expect your students to do. Concise routines benefit students
both at risk and that have ADD/ADHD as it gives them some structure to their schooling and
they will know what to expect in the classroom. Rewarding students for good behaviour is
very important to keep at risk students interested in learning. Although that is a part of
classroom management, giving the students clear, concise routines and procedures to follow
is the key to great behaviour. As the teacher it is also important to make the students aware of
your expectations in the classroom. If the students know what you as the teacher expects then
you can start to build positive student-teacher relationships as the student know what they can
get away with but the teacher will always have control of the situation (Patsalides, 2012).
This will give the students confidence, as they will be completing the work that is set for
them, and completing it at a reasonably high standard as a result of the concise routines
developed by the teacher.

Teachers have both a legal and a moral obligation to ensure that all students, regardless of
disability, learn within the classroom. The Queensland Disability Services Act (2006) ensures
all students are made inclusive and teachers, legally, promote education in the classroom
(Queensland Government, 2006). The Code of Conduct, although not a legal document,
suggests that all teachers, morally, demonstrate a high standard in teaching and learning by
engaging students in their learning and working to achieve high levels of outcomes for all
students.

Part B
To ensure that all learning needs are catered for, within the classroom, it is imperative that a
clear understanding of disability characteristics are established for this assignment we will
be focusing on ADD/ADHD and at risk learners. Schools often have to differentiate
curriculum to cater for all learning needs. The Melbourne Declaration on Education Goals for
Young Australians (2008) states that, schools play a vital role in promoting the intellectual,
physical, social, emotional, moral, spiritual and aesthetic development and wellbeing of
young Australians.

ADHD students can be identified within the classroom through a range of characteristics
associated with the disability; such as, social, emotional, linguistic, physical and cognitive.
Socially, ADHD students have limited social interactions. They are unable to read facial
expressions or body language. They often struggle to fit in with peers as they dont talk much
(Hefley, 2011). Emotionally, hyperactivity consumes ADHD persons. Often, ADHD
sufferers struggle to emotionally think about their actions and consequences that follow.
Often, ADHD students have an inability to keep their emotions to themselves, which often
means that they become angry quickly. Linguistically, because ADHD persons struggle to
organise their thoughts, their speech is affected. As a result, they often struggle to get their
point across. ADHD students often do not comprehend and retain vocabulary, due to their
lack of ability to concentrate (Bilingustics, 2013). Physically, ADHD persons suffer from an
impulsive disorder and often need to physically move around. Cognitive functions such as
motivational problems and response to family distress or peer problems are characteristics of
ADHD (Rommelse, 2010).

At risk students are formally identified in a classroom environment by numerous


characteristics, these include social, emotional, linguistic, physical and cognitive. Socially, at
risk persons struggle to build relationships with others and do not participate in school
culture. At risk sufferers often do not socially interact with peers and prefer to be by
themselves. In a school setting, at risk students have low attendance levels typically when
they have negative relationships with teachers and peers (Early Childhood Development,
2013). Another key characteristic prominent with at risk students is physical. According to
the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (2013), at risk students
generally display erratic behaviour and significant behavioural issues. Under many
circumstances these students seek to perform well in numeracy and literacy but generally face
numerous struggles which lead to poor results in the academic field. In addition to the stated
characteristics, J.E. Ormrod (2010) states that a large portion of at risk students are the
subject of numerous self-esteem issues. These characteristics must be kept in mind when
working with at risk students in the classroom.

By implementing specific teaching strategies that cater for ADHD students characteristics it
has been found that ADHD sufferers are more likely to achieve within the classroom. By
using ADHD students names in direct questions or in the lesson content often helps them by
re-directing their attention in the lesson. Using visual time plans, for example through
pictures, that all students can see often helps ADHD students know what will be expected of
them and often gives students something to look forward to. In addition, having a quiet area,
where ADHD students can sit and complete actives, often focuses students and gives them an
area where they can express themselves. Furthermore, by having tasks which ADHD students
can complete on their arrival too school settles students down and focuses them on their
school work (Child Development Institute, 2013).

In addition to this, there are also specific teaching strategies that cater for the needs of
students that are identified as at risk. By building a sense of trust with students through
spending time positively communicating aspects of their lives in and out of school students
feel appreciated in the classroom which has a positive effect on their learning. Creating
strong relationships with the students will provide a platform for a source of enduring and
cherished advice to students. In addition, teachers need to create realistic pathways, ideally
with guardrails. Teachers need to recognise the difficulty of trying new paths to prepare
students for obstacles and supporting them when they run into problems. This can be highly
challenging, as some of the students' incorrect actions will violate school rules or perhaps
even break legal boundaries. Teachers must handle student cases individually, with
discerning judgment rather than with the kind of rigid justice that has led the school dropout
rates. Engaging students in setting of groups so as having the opportunities to receive positive
recognition and to make positive contributions, spending time in teamwork environments
provides a supportive network and receiving help learning new skills that they find valuable
and helpful in their lives will all benefit students that are at risk. Furthermore, engaging
settings in the school and the community have logos, mottos, missions, and other tangible
objects that allow students to experience a sense of belonging and pride.

In conclusion, all students learning needs must be catered for within the classroom, especially
students with disabilities. In particular, ADHD students along with students identified as at
risk require learning strategies to be implemented in the classroom, which respond to their
characteristics.
References

Abbott, S. (2013). At-risk. Retrieved from http://edglossary.org/at-risk/


Attention deficit disorder. (2014).
http://medical-disctonary.thefreedictonary.com/ADD+or+ADHD
Australian Government. (2008). Teachers code of professional practice. Retrieved from
www.det.act.gov.au
Bilingustics. 2013. Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Retrieved from
http://bilinguistics.com/disorder/attention-deficit-disorder/
Child Development Institute. (2013). Suggested classroom interventions for children with
ADHD & learning disabilities. Retrieved from
http://childdevelopmentinfo.com/learning/learning_disabilities/teacher/.
Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. 2013. Identifying students at
risk, retrieved from
http://www.education.vic.gov.au/school/principals/participation/pages/disengagedrisk
.aspx
Hefley. 2011. ADHD and social interactions. Retrieved from
http://www.crchealth.com/troubled-teenagers/adhd-social-interactions/
J.E, Ormrod. 2008. Characteristics of students at risk and why students drop out, retrieved
from http://www.education.com/reference/article/characteristics-students-risk/
Magiera, K. (2005). Co-Teaching in middle school classrooms under routine conditions:
Does the instructional experience differ for students with disabilities in co-taught and
solo-taught classes? Journal of Learning disabilities and research, 79 85. Retrieved
from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1540-5826.2005.00123.x/pdf.
Patsalides. (2012). Establishing classroom routines and procedures. Retrieved from
http://www.brighthubeducation.com/classroom-management/3107-establishing-
classroom-routines/
PBS parents. (2014). The benefits of inclusive education. Retrieved from
http://www.pbs.org/parents/education/learning-disabilities/inclusive-education/the-
benefits-of-inclusive-education/Porter. (2009). Motivating children. Retrieved from
www.louiseporter.com.au
Queensland Government Health. (2013). Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD.
Retrieved from www.health.queensland.gov.au
Queensland Government. (2006). The Queensland disability services act (2006). Retrieved
from www.legislation.queensland.gov.au
Rommelse. 2010. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and cognition. Retrieved from
http://www.child-encyclopedia.com/documents/RommelseANGxp.pdf