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Personally Relevant: From Different to Differentiated Curriculum Successful Learning Conference 2013 Bree Jimenez, PhD University of North Carolina at.

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Presentation on theme: "Personally Relevant: From Different to Differentiated Curriculum Successful Learning Conference 2013 Bree Jimenez, PhD University of North Carolina at."— Presentation transcript:

1 Personally Relevant: From Different to Differentiated Curriculum Successful Learning Conference 2013 Bree Jimenez, PhD University of North Carolina at Greensboro North Carolina, United States Based on: Trela, K., & Jimenez, B., (in press). From functional to personally relevant curriculum: A reflection on the shift from “different” to “differentiated curriculum for students with significant intellectual disabilities. Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities.

2 Academic? Functional? Brushing teeth Reading a novel Solving an Algebra equation Science experiment on Plate Tectonics Community Navigation Calendar skills Cooking skills Compare and Contrast two famous historical figures Successful Learning Conference 2013

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4 Language 2010 Rosa’s law (United States - PUBLIC LAW 111– 256) “Spread the Word to End the Word” “person first” language Influence “field” characterize programs and services ▫e.g., IEP - placements along a continuum of support Successful Learning Conference 2013

5 NEED FOR CHANGE OF LANGUAGE Maintain the individualized nature of special education Over emphasis on alignment to content standards could promote IEPs written without attention to the student’s unique needs Intent of terminology – “Functional Curriculum” ▫promoted independent living ▫unintentionally became the “something or somewhere else” Successful Learning Conference 2013

6 Separate Path ?? Successful Learning Conference 2013

7 Criterion of Ultimate Functioning Brown, Nietupski, & Hamre-Nietupski, 1976 Static set of community living skills and activities “Catalog of Skills” Movement –away from Developmental Model RESPECT = activities that support independent functioning within home, school, and work communities Successful Learning Conference 2013 Unintended Consequences Intentions

8 Solely Functional Curriculum Approach Separate Curriculum Need to deliver instruction in a separate setting DIFFERENT Successful Learning Conference 2013

9 ACADEMIC FOCUS  Access to general education curriculum (ACARA)  Research  supports meaningfully access and measurable progress toward general curriculum standards. Successful Learning Conference 2013

10 Personally Relevant Curriculum Aligned to grade- appropriate standards Planned and implemented collaboratively with general education teachers Assessed with appropriate supports and progress monitoring tools Designed with explicit connections to school and broader community life Successful Learning Conference 2013

11 Hunt, McDonnell, & Crocket (2012) provides an ecological curricular framework to guide IEP teams as they balance individual needs of students with significant intellectual disabilities with opportunities to both access and make meaningful progress toward general education curriculum standards (i.e., Australian Curriculum; US Common Core State Standards). Successful Learning Conference 2013

12 Kathy is a middle school teacher of students with moderate to severe disabilities in a rural state far from a coast line. Although she whole-heartedly agrees with teaching science to her students, she sometimes wondered about the relevance of some of the concepts she teaches. For example, when teaching about pollution, one of her lessons demonstrated the effects of an oil spill on birds’ feathers. Although the students enjoyed the lesson, she wasn’t sure this was something they might actually encounter in their community. However, she did continue teaching the concept of pollution, particularly air pollution that is caused by burning coal (which is something her students could easily relate to in their community). One spring morning, Kathy’s students came into her classroom discussing “oil” that they had seen on T.V. There had been a giant oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and news coverage of the spill was dominating T.V. broadcasting. Kathy took this opportunity to review with her students what they had learned about the effects of the oil on birds’ feathers and animal fur. She was thrilled with the fact that what she had taught them lead to a pertinent discussion about a current, national event. Successful Learning Conference 2013

13 Personally Relevant Unambiguous focus on curriculum that is differentiated by making intentional, personally relevant connections to the lives of students with intellectual disabilities Successful Learning Conference 2013 Although the argument may be made that this is simply a change in labels, we propose that the term reflects a level of differentiation that promotes access to make meaningful progress in the general education curriculum rather than a separate curriculum.

14 Closing Information ContactResources https://sites.google.com/a/uncg.e du/bree-jimenez/home *Website has more “Professional Resources” Successful Learning Conference 2013


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