Spring brings change and hope. Spring also brings allergies, more conversations about school appropriate relationships between students, and potentially for some students, moving on to the next campus.
What Is Waiting On the Other Side?
By now the next campus has probably come over. Students have made plans to attend their next school. Whatever that may be. For the young ones though, even if it is the second time changing campuses, perhaps the first time. There is a lot of questions. Fortunately, for students with disabilities, often there are tracks for students to visit their next campus to help them before they arrive to see their campus and to meet some folks who may be there in the fall.
But this is not the only strategy that needs to be used.
Students need to hear from their peers, or even older peers that everything will work out. Maybe it will be their first campus with a locker. Maybe it will be a larger campus and there are many buildings. Maybe it may be the first time they will have to change classes. But all of that will work out and they can feel confident if they give themselves time.
Spend some time with the student. Reassure the student that though they’ll have moved up to the next campus, that you still believe they can be successful.
Maybe it will be their first campus with a locker. Maybe it will be a larger campus and there are many buildings. Maybe it may be the first time they will have to change classes.
Some students express their anxiety very physically. Common challenges in this method include getting into fights with peers or even ripping at their hands. It is important to sometimes let students have a moment to deal with their anxiety. Many students do not naturally have words when they have a feeling they do not know how to mask or share.
Connect students with peers who also may be experiencing the same thing. Get the students to connect about the things they may share. Finding common ground about things not about the following year is pretty important. Building those peer relationships can help make things a little easier.
The Real Challenge of Spring
The part that students do not really seem to be able to focus on during this time of year while all the things are going on: the school year in progress is not over yet.
There will be more projects before they are dismissed for the academic year.
There will be more time with their peers.
There will be more assessments.
There will be time to improve.
There is time to understand the one thing you haven’t understood all year.
This week from Inclusion From Square One
Amanda Morin takes on how the argument for exclusion should be made and not inclusion. Check out the blog here.
Do you have any comments about this week’s blog? Do you have a question for us? Would you like to be a guest blogger? Would you like to have an opportunity to pilot some materials at your campus? Find ParaEducate online here, here, here, here,and on our website. Paraeducate is a company interested in providing materials, information, and strategies for people working in special education inclusion settings for grades K-12. ParaEducate, the blog, is published weekly during the academic school year on Thursdays, unless a holiday. ParaEducate shares their findings at conferences, through their books, and their academic adaptations.