Showing posts with label planning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label planning. Show all posts

Evidence Based or Best Practice: The Beginning

Balanced literacy. Orton-Gilliamham. Think-Alouds. Graphic Organizers. Direct instruction. OMG!!! 

Have you ever sat staring at your plans and IEPs and wonder how the #@& am I going to move this kid? Simply because of where the student sits in relation to their grade-level peers. 

I have. 


I have so many with the same need but they didn’t make as much progress as I was hoping. (Or they needed to.)

Buildings don’t buy curriculum programs with special education students in mind. They might ask (if you're lucky) for your input. To be real, they buy with the larger in mind, which makes sense when you need to get the biggest bang for your buck. 

What to do?????

In my building, moving students more than a year's growth is VERY important to us. We strive to close those gaps before they move to middle school. 

I don’t have programs. Well, I have access to several but they can be (and most of the time) used by classroom teachers or worse the materials from the program were used but not the program itself. 

I know I’m not the only one. So, what do you do???  


Want to learn what I do to get data that looks like this? 



I had an Instructional Coach when I first started teaching, that showed me the value of putting time into learning and mastering both educational best practices and evidence-based practices. So even, if I was stuck with limited options, I could get tons of bang without a whole lot of stress. 

Take guided reading, (yes, I know but you have to work with what you got), I became an expert at guided reading. I worked in tiny groups of two and three but with best practices and a couple of evidence-based practices, I was able to move kids to within months of their peers. (This brings up a whole different conversation when you can do this--is core really happening in the classroom or are they special education. I’m not going to answer those questions, as those are part of the larger school system.)

The Elementary Secondary Education Act defines evidence-based practices as those “effective educational strategies supported by evidence and research”.  When teachers use evidence-based practices with fidelity, they can be confident their teaching is likely to support student learning. 


David Ardale defines best education practices as the wide range of individual activities, policies, and program approaches to achieving positive changes in student attitudes or academic behaviors. 

Think Hattie and Marzano. (We all have a love/hate relationship with them)

Join me as I walk through how I use these ideas to get the most bang for your buck and move kids to close gaps with my special education students. 

Send me your questions or if you're stuck and need help with. I’ll help you problem solve.

Chat soon,

June Pick 3 Pinterest Linky

 For most of us we have began summer vacation. Mine started with a trip to New York City with my mom-who had a chance to sing at Carnegie Hall as part of John Rutter's choir. It was a great way to start off the summer!

Summer is also when we all start thinking about next school year. All that planning has to start at some point during the summer. I am not alone in this. I'm moving schools because my FTE went away and I'm hoping to move into my first house before the summer is over.

First up the planning. Looking at the whole year is hard. Looking at more than one grade level is even harder. But being in special education means that you have to know what is going on with each grade level where you have students. I have found it is the only way to make what I teach in isolation transfer and make sure they can assess the grade level curriculum.

First, when working with other grade level teachers putting things in Google is a must. In many ways even those of us that want nothing to do with computers find Google easy to use. I can across this freebie. I can go out and plan the year and share it with teachers. The fact that its in Google means I can change it as the year changes. This works perfectly with my online daily planner because I share it too. For many of us who have to make sure that we have some kind of grade level collaboration evidence throughout the year-this is perfect.
 Like most of things that land in a binder-it gets forgotten once its there. I like the idea of posting it on a wall. I find that when I see things on a daily basis it holds everyone accountable.

The cool thing about long range planning is once its done it take the stress off of the big things. The little things can always be changed as they come up.


So, I'm buying my first house this summer. My parents have been asking what I will do first after moving in. Honesty, I don't know. As a teacher, I don't have that kind of money--but I'm leaning to starting with the kitchen. The previous owner had put in new cabinets but there is not a back splash.  My kitchen is not this big but as a nature love the idea of pebbles as a back splash it so cool. I can get them a Lowe's and they just peel and stick to the wall--even better.
  Have a great beginning of summer. Until next time,

About Me

Welcome to my all thing special education blog. I empower busy elementary special education teachers to use best practice strategies to achieve a data and evidence driven classroom community by sharing easy to use, engaging, unique approaches to small group reading and math. Thanks for Hopping By.
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