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Personal Strategy Toolbox

Ed Psych

Exceptionalities included in this chart (in this order):


Cerebral Palsy, Giftedness, Sensory Disability: Visual Impairment, English Language Learners (ELL), Emotional
Depression, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome, FASD, ODD, CD, ADHD, LD
Great Website for more information on exceptionalities: http://www.learnalberta.ca/content/ieptLibrary/index.html ;
http://www.inclusiontoolbox.com/

Exception
ality
Name
Cerebral
Palsy

Definition &
AB Educ. Code

Characteristics
&/or Observable
Behaviours

Cerebral palsy (CP)


refers to a group of
disorders that result
from injury to the
developing brain,
and can affect
movement and
muscle
coordination.

Depending on which areas


of the brain are damaged,
CP can cause one or more
of the following:
Muscle tightness or
spasms
Involuntary
movement
Difficulty with gross
motor skills such as
walking or running
Difficulty with fine
motor skills such as
writing or doing up
buttons
Difficulty with
perception and
sensation
Individuals with CP may
have:
Cognitive
Speech and
language disorders
Visual and hearing
impairments
Learning
disabilities.
The parts of the body that
are affected and the
severity of impairment can

MILD:
Description Grade
Code
- Mild Cognitive
disability
ECS/Grades 1-12
Code 30/Code 51
- Learning disability
Grades 1-12
Code 54
- Hearing disability
ECS/Grades 1-12
Code 30/Code
55
- Communication
Delay ECS
Code 30

Teaching Strategies &


Resources
-

Teach all children skills regardless of


their impairment. Modify the activity
appropriately to meet their needs.
Realize that although a CP student
may never become fully able to
conventionally perform a skill, it is
still valuable for them to learn it (eg.
basketball for students in a
wheelchair).
Implement stretch breaks in the
classroom to assist the child with CP
into proper head positioning if
necessary. Create stretching
routines, and as a teacher be aware
of the student with CPs head
positioning so that s/he can use a
normal arc of vision to view the
teacher or activity (check head &
neck alignment). CP students may
have muscular stiffness, and may
have difficulty with head "righting"
(focusing on target) or orientation.
Talk to the class about cerebral palsy,
and if the child is comfortable with
the situation, have the child or parent
explain any adaptive needs.
Encourage other students to find
out how they can assist and when
they should assist the student with
Cerebral Palsy. This may help the
student with CP to feel included and

Links &/or
Sources
-

Teacher web:
http://teacherweb.com/
ON/JohnMcGregorSeco
ndarySchool/Learninga
ndEnrichmentCentre/C
erebralPalsy.pdf
Cerebral Palsy Learn
Alberta:
http://www.learnalbert
a.ca/content/inmdict/ht
ml/cerebral_palsy.html
Cerebral Palsy
Association in Alberta:
http://cpalberta.com/a
bout/cerebral-palsyfaq/
BC Education Recognizing the Child
with Cerebral Palsy:
http://www.bced.gov.b
c.ca/specialed/awarene
ss/32.htm
MyHealth.Alberta.ca:
https://myhealth.albert
a.ca/health/pages/cond
itions.aspx?
hwid=aa56262&#aa56
262-sec

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

Physical or
Medical disability
ECS/Grades 1-12
Code 30/Code
58
SEVERE:
- Severe Cognitive
disability ALL
Code 41
- Severe Physical
Medical disability
ALL Code 44
- Severe Delay
Involving
Language ECS
Code 47

vary widely.
**CP is not progressive, but
can seem to change as the
child grows.
CHARACTERISTICS:

Underdeveloped
motor skills

Slow to reach
developmental
milestones (rolling
over, sitting,
crawling, smiling,
walking)

May have high


levels of frustration
due to trouble
communicating and
being
misunderstood

Abnormal or
vacillating muscle
tone

Decreased muscle
tone- Hypotonia

Increased muscle
tone- Hypertonia
(stiff and rigid)

May favour one side

welcome in the classroom. It also


gives the rest of the class a
responsibility to including and
accepting them into the community.
85-95% of CP students have a speech
disability and30% have severely
limited speech which cannot be easily
understood. Students and teachers
may use various technologies to help
improve communication. Some
examples of technology which can be
used in the classroom are:
I). Digitized Speech Generator (Chat
Box, Liberator)
II).Bliss Board
III). Eye Movement Recognition
Hardware
The use of technology to
communicate allows the student with
CP to express themselves to the
teacher and the rest of the class. This
is allow them to build relationships.

Cerebral Palsy Blog Teaching Strategies:


http://cerebralpalsyres
ource.weebly.com/teac
hing-strategies.html

Infusing Assistive Tech


(Alberta Education):
https://education.alber
ta.ca/media/525549/ip
p9.pdf
Assistive Technology:
http://www.teachspece
d.ca/cerebral-palsy?
q=node/688
-

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

of the body or one


movement pattern

Giftedness

Demonstrated or
potential abilities to
show exceptionally

Unusual and often


awkward posture

May walk on tip


toes or may carry
arms high in high
guard position for
balance

May focus locally on


surroundings and
not view the larger
play area may
demonstrate poor
visual acuity

When under age 3


may demonstrate
difficulty with head
control and older
may hold head in
awkward position

Possible seizures
and tremors often
take medication to
reduce frequency

Work quickly
Generate explanations,
theories, ideas and

Tiered assignments- Teacher prepares


a range of distinct assignments, from
simple to complex, focusing on key

Class Coursepack
(Chapter 3Exceptional Students:

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

high capability in
specific disciplines,
intellect, or
creativity. Students
who are advanced in
one area or in many
areas and exceed
the expectations of
parents or of the
school curriculum in
specific areas or
development are
described as gifted.
Coding: 80

solutions
Show curiosity and/or
strong interests.
Does not work well in
normal classrooms
May have
accompanying
disabilities (Autism
Spectrum)
Have great vocabulary,
fluency, memory,
insight, reasoning,
observation skills,
problem-solving skills,
imagination and
motivation
Be highly self-directed
and independent
Be unusually perceptive
of or sensitive to
feelings and
expectations of others
Seem intense in
expression or feelings of
justice and/or empathy
Demonstrate
perfectionism and high
task commitment
Seem out of synch with
age-mates or prefer the
company of adults.
Very sensitive,
emotionally and even
physically

learning outcomes. Once gifted


students complete the required part,
they can move on to more complex
activities.
Ability Grouping- students work with
their intellectual peers on a regular
basis in or outside the classroom. This
could mean having gifted students
spend part of the day with a different
grade level for enrichment.
Mentor Programs- gifted students
apply their knowledge hands-on, in
real-life settings under the
supervision of an adult.
Authentic Problem Solving- Students
apply their knowledge and skills to
problems that are significant in their
own lives.
Telescoping- Gifted students can do
two curricula in one year.
Open Ended Assignments- Students
are given options for completing and
deciding how far to take their
learning.
Let your child follow his or her
passion. Some childrens intensity
may lead to immersion in a passion to
the exclusion of all else
Participating in their own SMART goal
setting helps students who are gifted
to practise higher-order and
metacognitive thinking.
Open-ended questions invite
critical and creative thinking, and
nurture the development of students
capacities to frame their own
questions.
Independent projects offer challenge
and engagement for students who
need academic enrichment.
Advanced Placement (AP): Students
participate in senior high school
courses that follow the prescribed AP

Learning and
Behaviour
Exceptionalities)
http://education.albert
a.ca/media/825847/sp
edcodingcriteria.pdf
https://education.alber
ta.ca/media/448831/jo
urney.pdf
http://education.albert
a.ca/media/1234009/1
3_ch10%20gifted.pdf

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

program and students who


successfully complete examinations
in the program may apply for
advanced credit or placement at
post-secondary institutions

Sensory
Disability:
Visual
Impairment

Visual impairment is a
limitation of one or more
functions of the eye that
cannot be corrected
with the use of glasses
or contacts. The
exceptionality is
considered to have a
low-incidence rate
amongst students.
There are two Alberta
Education codes for
visual impairments:
Code 56: VISUAL
DISABILITY (ECS: Code
30; Grades 112: Code
56):
A student/ECS child
identified with a mild to
moderate visual
disability is one whose
vision is so limited that
it interferes with the
ability to learn and
requires modification of
the learning
environment. A
student/child who is
designated as having
limited vision should
have a visual acuity of
less than 20/70 (6/21
metric) in the better eye
after correction and/or a
reduced field of vision.

Students who are visually


impaired may experience
the following:

Uncomfortable/unea
sy in unfamiliar
settings

Feeling of isolation
due to their
disability

Increased feelings
of stress

Struggle to pick up
on social cues

May use a cane or


have a seeing eye
dog

May appear to be
unable to focus

Shorter attention
span

Braille textbooks:

Braille is a type of written


language where the words are
written with a pattern of raised
dots on a page that is felt by
fingers.

When using Braille in the


classroom, it is important to
ensure that the student can read
Braille. This may require that the
school provides the student with
an assistance to teach them how
to read Braille.
Laptop programs (eg. Zoomtext):

Assignments/notes can be
uploaded into the program so that
they can be enlarged and easier
for the student to see. This
program also allows students to
respond to assignments by being
able to type in the program.

Student would need to have a


laptop/computer all the time.
Teacher must also have digital
copies of each assignment or set
of notes to email to the student.
Voice recorder:

Used to record teacher lectures.

Students can used this as a study


tool, rather than having to review
notes through a program like
Zoomtext.
Scribe (for assignments or testing):

Voice Print http://www.ami.ca/Pages/d


efault.aspx
Speaking Graphing
Calculator http://shop.aph.org/webap
p/wcs/stores/servlet/Produc
t_Orion%20TI-84%20Plus
%20Talking%20Graphing
%20Calculator_1-0734000P_10001_11051
Sample Activities http://vision.alberta.ca/me
dia/83125/3%20section
%206%20resource%20kit
%20goals%20nov
%202010.pdf
Adapted program of
studies from the California
Department of Education http://www.cde.ca.gov/sp/s
e/sr/documents/braillemat
hstand.pdf
NSCC Disability Services http://www.disabilityservic
es.nscc.ca/en/home/disabil
itiesinformation/sensorydis
abilities/default.aspx

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

Code 46: BLINDNESS:


A student/child with
severe vision
impairment is one who:
has corrected vision so
limited that it is
inadequate for most or
all instructional
situations, and
information must be
presented through other
means; and
has a visual acuity
ranging from 6/60
(20/200) in the better
eye after correction, to
having no usable vision
or a field of vision
reduced to an angle of
20 degrees.
For those students/ECS
children who may be
difficult to assess (e.g.,
cortical blindnessdevelopmentally
delayed), a functional
visual assessment by a
qualified specialist in
the field of vision or a
medical professional
may be sufficient to
support eligibility.

An academic accommodation for


students who are visually
impaired is to have a scribe to
write for them. This will allow for
the students to express their
ideas during tests and quizzes
and allow them the same
opportunities for achievement as
other students.
Voice Print
(http://www.ami.ca/Pages/default.aspx):

Voice print is a Canadian website


that provides audio for various
newspapers, free of charge. This
would be an excellent way to
have your exceptional student be
able to participate in some of the
Social Studies units that involve
current events.

It would be easy to implement


into the classroom as long as you
have access to technology.
Visual Efficiency Skills:

These skills are used to


accurately interpret visual
information and complete visual
tasks as efficiently and effectively
as possible. With comprehensive,
systematic training and practice,
most students can learn to use
their remaining vision more
effectively and efficiently.

Visual efficiency training may


include blur interpretation,
scanning and location skills,
strategies to improve visual
efficiency (e.g., use of appropriate
lighting or wearing tinted lenses

Standard for Special


Education https://education.alberta.c
a/media/511690/ecep_blin
d_or_visually_impaired.pdf
Special Education Coding
Criteria http://education.alberta.ca/
media/8708251/spedcodin
gcriteria_2012-2013.pdf
Information for Teachers http://www.learnalberta.ca/
content/inmdict/html/visua
l_impairment.html

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

to reduce glare), and strategies


which enhance a given students
access to visual information.

English
Language
Learners
(ELL)

- Also known as English


Second Language
Learners (ESL), it is an
exceptionality in which
the students first
learned language is a
language other than
English. This lack of
English proficiency
makes full participation
in learning opportunities
difficult to the students.
Coding:

Canadian-born
(303)
Foreign-born (301)

- There is a wide range of


characteristics and
behaviours for ELL
students. An overview of
these can be found at
http://www.learnalberta.ca/c
ontent/eslapb/documents/c
haracteristics_of_english_la
nguage_learners.pdf with
respect to the Profiency
Benchmarks.
- Behaviours are organized
into 5 different levels based
on English speaking ability.
These include: Beginning,
Developing, Expanding,
Bridging and Extending.
- Students who are in the
Beginning Level show
behaviours such as high
self-consciousness,
frustration and fatigue as
the day goes on, and heavy
reliance on visual
representations.
- As students progress
through the levels, there is
an increase in their comfort
speaking English as well as
their confidence in learning.
-Teachers of ELL students
often misjudge their
language abilities. There is

-Use a variety of instruction and


assessment strategies.
-Use visuals during instruction and
accompany print material with visuals for
clarification and explanation.
-Slow down your speech and use shorter
sentences, examples, gestures,
demonstrations, and avoid expressions or
sayings that are only common in your
culture.
-Follow predictable routines.
-Involve students culture and family in
school events and projects
-Allow students to substitute drawings,
pictures, or diagrams, graphs, charts for a
written assignment
-Reduce length and allow more time for
written assignments
-for more specific strategies and
activities, visit
http://www.educ.ualberta.ca/staff/olenka.
bilash/best%20of
%20bilash/strategiesactivities.html

- Alberta Education:
English Second Language
Learners:
http://education.alberta.ca/
teachers/aisi/themes/esl.as
px
- Supporting English
Language Learners:
http://www.learnalberta.ca/
content/eslapb/
http://www.edutopia.org/bl
og/strategies-andresources-supporting-elltodd-finley webpage is a
portal to multiple other
websites, articles, and
resources.
http://education.jhu.edu/P
D/newhorizons/strategies/t
opics/English%20Language
%20Learners/Articles/Effec
tive%20Instructional
%20Strategies%20for
%20English%20Language
%20Learners%20in
%20Mainstream
%20Classrooms/
-12 simple ways to support
ELL students in the
classroom
http://www.cultofpedagogy.
com/supporting-eslstudents-mainstream-

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

Emotional
Depression
AKA:
Major
depression
Major
depressive
disorder
Clinical
depression

- Feelings of severe
despondency
and dejection.
- It is an internalizing
disorder that
involves a childs
feelings,
thoughts and
behaviours, exhibits
chronic and pervasive
behaviours
that interfere with the
learning
and safety of the
student/child,
other students/children
and staff.
It is characterized by
symptoms
such as persistent
feelings of

an observable difference
between the conversational
language and academic
language these students
use. This misunderstanding
can lead to misconceptions
about the intelligence or
motivation levels of ELL
students. Jim Cummins
helped clarify this disparity
by introducing two
language continua called
BICS (Basic Interpersonal
Communicative Skills) and
CALP (Cognitive Academic
Language Proficiency). For
more information about
BICS and CALP visit
http://www.educ.ualberta.ca
/staff/olenka.Bilash/best
%20of%20bilash/bics
%20calp.html.
Changes in: feelings,
physical health, thinking &
behaviour.
These changes can
manifest themselves as:
-Extended periods of
excessive sadness,
feelings of hopelessness, or
crying.
-Loss of interest in
activities.
-Sleep problems (too much
or too little).
-Change in appetite. Lack of
energy or
excessive fatigue.
-Feelings of worthlessness
or guilt. -Difficulties
thinking or concentrating.
-Increased irritability or
anger.

classroom/

Teachers can play an important role by


observing the warning signs and creating
a
school environment that is sensitive to
the
needs of children with depression.
1. Communicate with parents to discuss
strategies for helping children learn and
feel better.
2. Invite children to share their feelings
and create routine opportunities for
reflecting on and sharing their feelings
(e.g., circle time or journal writing).
3. Refer children to and encourage
children to use the PEERS feelings
strategies.
4. Be consistent with routines and use
visual schedules.
5. Focus on the positive.
6. Create opportunities for healthy living.
7. Teach short-term goal-setting for

Children, youth, and


depression. (n.d.).
Retrieved from
Canadian Mental Health
Association: mental health
for
all website:
http://www.cmha.ca/menta
l_health/childrenanddepression/#.VLxkbYrF
9XZ
PEERS program mental
health roundtable session
for
teachers: Depressive
symptoms in children [Fact
sheet].
(n.d.). Retrieved from
http://www.psych.ualberta.
ca/~hoglund/PEERSlab/ass
et

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

sadness, hopelessness,
dejection
and guilt; withdrawal
from
activities and people;
poor
concentration; lack of
energy;
inability to sleep; weight
loss or
gain; anxiety, irritability
or
agitation; and/or
thoughts of
death or suicide.
- It may be caused by a
loss, by
genetic or biochemical
factors, or
by past or ongoing
trauma.
Students with
disabilities are as
vulnerable to depression
as the
general population.
-There is no one cause
for
depression, research
suggests a
dynamic and complex
interplay
between several factors.
Coding: 30, 42, 53
(ECS: Code 30; Grades
112: Code
53)

-Physical violence toward


other persons and/or
physical destructiveness
toward the
environment
-Somatic complaints (This
Stomach-aches,
nausea, headaches, body
aches or vague
complaints).
-Preoccupation with death.
Social withdrawal. Note:
The most important
symptoms to watch for in
children are
irritability and somatic
complaints.
-Inability to establish or
maintain satisfactory
relationships with peers or
adults.
-Inappropriate behaviour or
feelings under
ordinary conditions
-fears associated with
personal or school
problems
-difficulty accepting the
realities of personal
responsibility and
accountability
- displays chronic, extreme
with a severe and
pervasive behaviours and
requires close and
constant adult supervision.
( can significantly
interfere with both learning
and safety)
-could have a diagnosis of:
conduct disorder,
schizophrenia, bi-polar
disorder, OCD.

academic work.
8. Build a support network by promoting
peer assistance.
9. Record unusual behaviours (e.g., in a
log) and communicate concerns with
mental health professionals (e.g., school
counselor).
10. A well-designed classroom: layout,
movability, etc.
11. Establish an I need a break system.
Refer to pg. 13 of Supporting positive
behaviours in Alberta schools
12. Establish High levels of structure and
routine
The student may require a diagnosis from
a psychiatrist, registered psychologist or
a
developmental pediatrician.
These can help you establish and
maintain
an emotional/behaviour plan

s/peers-roundtabledepressive symptoms.pdf
Supporting positive
behaviour in Alberta
schools: A
classroom approach [Fact
sheet]. (2008).
Retrieved from
http://www.learnalberta.ca/
content/inspb2/html/suppo
rting_positive_behaviour_o
range.pdf
Medical/Disability
information for classroom
teachers:
Depression [Fact sheet].
(n.d.). Retrieved from
http://www.learnalberta.ca/
content/inmdict/html/depr
ession.html
Teaching students with
mental health disorders
ministry
of education: Resources for
teachers [Fact sheet].
(n.d.).
Retrieved from
http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/
specialed/docs/depression_
resource.pdf
Special education coding
criteria 2012/2013. (2012).
Retrieved from
http://education.alberta.ca/
media/8708251/spedcodin
g
criteria_2012-2013.pdf
Alberta Childrens Hospital.
(2011). Services. Retrieved
from
http://www.calgaryhealthre
gion.ca/ACH/programs_ser
v

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

- may display selfstimulation or self-injurious


behaviour
To be clinically depressed
you need to exhibit
at least 5 symptoms and
have it persist for at
least 2 weeks.
A child may have multiple
symptoms of
depression but not meet
criteria for clinical
depression.
Some notable factors:
Genetic rick, family
history, psychological and
biological factors

Williams
Syndrome

Is a genetic
condition that is
present at birth and
can affect anyone. It
is characterized by
medical problems,
including
cardiovascular
disease, mild to
moderate
intellectual delays,
and learning
disabilities. These
occur side by side
with striking verbal
abilities, highly
social personalities

Distinctive pixie like


facial features
Short stature, slight
build
Limited mobility in the
joints
Curvature of the spine
Cardiovascular disease
Trying to talk non-stop,
persistent questioning
and use of language as
a distraction when a
task is too hard
Smiling a lot, being
gregarious and overly
empathetic
Being overactive, with a

1.

2.

3.

Give clear, brief directions. Have the


students repeat the directions back to
you to monitor comprehension. By
simplifying the language you can
reduced the students habit of
echoing or repetition that may be due
to poor comprehension of complex
language and directions.
Use the students strong verbal skills
to learn new skills by using self-talk
through a task or activity (e.g. First I
have to ___, the I have to ___.)
To reduce anxiety and the number of
questions asked teach strategies for
self-monitoring, such as making and
using daily lists and personal
checklists.

ices/services.html
Antay-Moore, Dana.
(2008). Supporting Positive
Behaviour in Alberta
Schools. Edmonton AB:
Alberta
Education.
Gazzaniga, S., M. &
Heatherton, F. T. (2006).
Psychological Science.
USA: W. W. Norton &
Company,
Inc.
Hospital School Programs
Resources:
http://www.bcchildrens.ca/
YourVisit/SchoolServices.ht
m
http://www.calgaryhealthre
gion.ca/ACH/programs_ser
v
ices/services.html
http://schools.cbe.ab.ca/b1
08/pdfs/DrGordonTownsen
d
ARJ13.pdf
Williams Syndrome
Association:

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

Autism
Spectrum
Disorder
(ASD)

and an affinity for


music.
Coding: 54, 55, 58

Severe Physical Or
Medical Disability
(Code 44)
Mild or Moderate
Medical Disability
(Code 58)
-Is the most common
neurological disorder
and one of the most
common developmental
disabilities affecting
Canadian children,
which usually appears
before age 3.
-Children with autism
usually have particular
communication and
social characteristics
and repetitive
behaviors to different
degrees, but each child
with autism responds or
behave in unique way.

pervasive lack of
attention
Having narrowed
interests with very high
levels of focus
Repetitive motor
patterns
Poor motor coordination
Extreme sensitivity to
certain sounds
May have strengths in
verbal short-term
memory and spoken
language, combined
with weaknesses in
comprehension, gross
and fine motor skills
and visual-spatial skills
There are 4 main
characteristics:
1) Communication
(struggles with nonverbal
communication and
expressive language skills.
Repetitive and idiosyncratic
speech patterns and
restricted vocabulary)
2) Social integration (3
subtypes: aloof, passive,
active)
3) Unusual/challenging
behaviour (inflexible
adherence, stereotypic &
repetitive motor
mannerisms, fascination
with movement of
objects)
4) Learning
characteristics (uneven

4.

Design math tasks and materials that


consider spatial organization and fine
motor difficulties. For example,
reduce the amount of information on
a page; provide a window box
template to view one question at a
time; provide graph paper to align
numbers correctly.

1) Provide visual support and hands


on activities
These strategies can help with
communication and self-control. These
include checklists, daily schedules, simple
picture instructions, labels, charts, etc.
For example. if teaching emotions, be
sure to provide pictures with different
faces in various scenarios.
2) Use activity-based instruction.
Allows teachers to focus on multiple goals
and skills. An example is a partner puzzle
activity promotes communication skills.
3) Identify an alternative behaviour
Find appropriate behaviour that serves
the same function.
4) Find strengths, weaknesses,
interests and talents Communication
with parents and teachers of the student
determines what motivates the student to
succeed, encourages good behaviour,
and allows them to enjoy school. This

http://www.autismsocietyc
anada.ca/
http://education.alberta.ca/
media/825847/spedcoding
criteria.pdf
https://www.gnb.ca/0000/p
ublications/ss/TeachingStu
dentswithAutismSpectrum
Disorders.pdf
http://www.learnnc.org/lp/e
ditions/picture-symbols
http://download.springer.co
m/static/pdf/855/art
%253A10.1023%252FA
%253A1025806900162.pdf
?
auth66=1421796404_9d0
81542786c94934c7fee198
176a735&ext=.pdf
http://education.alberta.ca/

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

patterns of development)

may also develop skills for future


employment. A home-to-school journal
would be a good way to keep track of the
progress.

There is also anxiety,


unusual patterns of
attention and responses to
sensory stimuli.

Down
Syndrome

Down Syndrome
is a genetic disorder
whereby a person
has three copies of
chromosome 21
instead of two. It is
the most common
genetic
(chromosomal)
intellectual disability
occurring from 1 in
700 up to 1 in 1000
live births.

Down Syndrome
is named after the
English doctor, John
Langdon Down, who
was the first to
categorize the
common features of
people with the
condition.
Coding 51, 54, 57, 41,
43

Lower level of task


persistence and higher
level of off-task behavior
which interferes with
task completion.
Communication
barriers may be present,
and many struggle by
knowing far more than
they can express.
Some students may
have sensory and/or
motor difficulties and
may have difficulties
processing information
from many sources at
once. This may cause
them to act out or
become excited if their
senses are not working
properly together.
The mean IQ of
children with Down
Syndrome averages
about 45. (range, 25-70)
Older children and
young adults are
described as having
primarily a positive
demeanor and tend to
be predictable in their
behavior.
Physically, people
with Down Syndrome

Maintain a positive attitude and


reinforce students for specific tasks
since many students will work for
positive recognition and affirmation.
Encourage the parents to work
with you to learn what works best for
their child.
Use many verbal and visual cues
when giving instruction (eg. rhythmic
songs, repetition phrases, large
photos, tactic manipulatives).
Establish a daily routine with the
student and allow practice time to
review the schedule daily. This will
minimize outbreaks due to change.
Use pictures, symbols or signs to
communicate if there are
communication barriers, and do not be
afraid to ask the student to slow
down or try again if there is
difficulty in understanding what they
are trying to express. It is also
important that teachers model
appropriate communication strategies.
Be aware that loud noises,
unusual light, and activities around
them will distract and hinder focus.
Therefore provide quiet spaces or
noise cancelling headphones that all
students in the classroom have the
option to use. You can also teach
students to work through distractions
as well.
Allow students to film material

media/512916/autism1b.p
df
http://education.alberta.ca/
media/512925/autism3.pdf
http://education.alberta.ca/
media/512928/autism4.pdf
Indian Journal of Medical
Sciences
http://www.bioline.org.br/re
quest?ms09011
Canadian Down Syndrome
Society
www.cdss.ca
Teaching Students with
Down Syndrome
http://www.cdss.ca/images
/pdf/parent_information/te
aching_students_with_dow
n_syndrome.pdf
Global Down Syndrome
Foundation
http://www.globaldownsyn
drome.org/about-downsyndrome/facts-aboutdown-syndrome/
Medical/Disability
Information for Classroom
Teachers
http://www.learnalberta.ca/
content/inmdict/html/down
_syndrome.html
Special Education Coding
Criteria 2012/2013
http://education.alberta.ca/
media/825847/spedcoding
criteria.pdf

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

have almond-shaped
eyes and a short stature.
They often have a short

neck, with excess skin at


the back of the neck and
white spots on the
colored part of the eye

(called Brushfield spots).


Often they also have
wide, short hands with
very short fingers.
People with Down

Syndrome have an
increased risk for heart,
respiratory, orthopedic,
skin, hearing, or vision
problems. These vary from
person to person.

FASD (Fetal
Alcohol
Spectrum
Disorder)

Describes the
physical
malformation and
mental retardation
observed in children
born to alcoholic

Strengths: visual arts,


music, enjoy physical
activities, enjoy
repetitive work and
succeed in structured
situations

done in class, so that they can review


it at home with parental support.
Create differentiated scaled
assessments and activities, and use
the same accommodations in testing
as was used in teaching.
Speak slower and with fewer
words, and allocate sufficient wait time
in order for students to process and
respond before repeating
instructions/questions.
It is important to recognize that a
child with Down's syndrome may still
acquire many of the cognitive and
social skills most other people develop.
It simply takes more time, and a child
should be allowed to move forward at
their own pace.
Alberta Education has created sample
individualized program planning (IPP)
templates to help identify the level and
types of teaching strategies and supports
each student requires. Template B is
designed for students with moderate to
severe cognitive disabilities, such as
Down Syndrome. The purpose of this
particular template is to identify 5
individual learning goals in order to
increase the students engagement in
learning, (particularly literacy and
numeracy). Template A is designed for
students with mild cognitive disabilities.
The purpose of this particular template is
to find strategies that meet the students
strengths and needs, while also reducing
learning barriers.
Structure the physical learning
environment. Create a calm and quiet
environment.
o Students with FASD are easily
distracted if they have poor
sensory processing. Less

Sample IPP Templates


http://www.learnalberta.ca/
content/ieptLibrary/lib07.ht
ml

knowfasd.ca GOVT OF
AB
fasd.alberta.ca U of A
education.alberta.ca
FASD Resources
learnalberta.ca FASD

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

mothers
FAS: Profound
physical and neural
abnormalities in
offspring caused by
exposure to high
ethanol levels in
utero
Code 42
Code 44 (severe
cases of FASD)
Occurs 1 in a 100

Behaviour: Varying
degrees of learning
disabilities, low
intelligence test scores,
hyper-activity, social
problems
Respond to smaller
teaching groups, have
difficulties with memory
and organizational
skills, struggle to learn
basic facts (eg.
Multiplication)
Emotional and
behavioral issues
(possibly due to
memory problems)
Craniofacial features:
o Skin folds at the
corner of the
eye, low nasal
bridge
o Short nose
o Indistinctive
philtrum
(groove b/w
nose and upper
lip)
o Small head
circumference
o Small eye
opening
o Small midface
o Thin upper lip
Typical FASD behaviours
are especially confusing
in the classroom:
o Lack of causeand-effect
resoning
o Lying
o Stealing

visual stimuli might help


these students accomplish
more work.
o Tennis balls on the bottom of
chair and desk legs to reduce
noise.
o Window coverings, quiet
music, headphones for quiet
time
Use role-playing and practice in
context. Teach social and adaptive
skills.
o Students with FASD have
trouble with adaptive and
functional living skills. These
skills are often an essential
part of programming for
students with FASD.
o Role-playing allows students
to explore communication
skills in a safe environment.
Always follow role-playing
with discussion. Its also
important to be the observe
use listening skills.
o FASD students seem to have
difficulty connecting cause
and effect and changing
behavior as a result of
consequences. They often
make the same mistakes
even after being corrected
several times. Be consistent!
Remind students of the
consequences!
Help students distinguish story telling
from lying by providing them with
positive opportunities to tell stories.
Ask students: Truth or story? This
cues students to stop and think and
get back to the truth.
Directly teach concepts of true and
false, real and imaginary, fiction and

Resources

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

ODD
(Opposition
al Defiant
Disorder)

Oppositional defiant
disorder (ODD) is a
condition
characterized by a
persistent pattern of
aggressive and

Common behaviours
include
o frequent temper
tantrums,
frequent
arguing with

non-fiction. Engage children in


pretend play this will make it easier
to distinguish between pretend and
real.
o Directly teach younger
children what pretending
involves. (Use costumes and
props to demonstrate roles.
Discuss differences between
pretending and lying.)
Create a physically and
psychologically safe environment for
all students.
o Students benefit from
structure and routine and a
predictable environment.
o Work with students to develop
a plan for what to do when
they feel overwhelmed by
people, sound, light or
movement. (Strategies may
include: go for a walk, get a
drink, go to the quiet area.)
o Seat students with FASD
beside appropriate role
models such as less active
students with good work
habits.
o Stand by students when
giving instructions.
o Seat students in quiet
locations away from the
pencil sharpener, cupboards,
windows, colorful displays,
and other materials that
might be distracting.
Meet with the student and parents
early in the school year to discuss
how the school can support this
students needs related to ODD. This
could include finding out about:
the students strengths, interests

Alberta Education.
Supporting Positive
Behaviour in Alberta
Schools.
http://education.
alberta.ca/media/6979

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

defiant behaviour
and a need to annoy
or irritate others.
CODE 42
Oppositional defiant
disorder usually
shows up in children
by eight years of
age and sometimes
as early as three
years. Oppositional
defiant disorder may
develop as a way of
dealing with
depression,
inconsistent rules or
standards, or a
traumatic event or
situation, such as
divorce, trauma or
conflict.

both peers and


adults,
intentionally
annoying
others, blaming
others for own
mistakes, and
appearing angry
and vindictive.
Treatment for
oppositional defiant
disorder may include
counselling, behaviour
therapy, parent
education and
medication. The
number of symptoms
tends to increase with
age and, if not
recognized early,
behaviour patterns can
become wellestablished and more
resistant to treatment.
Students with ODD also
may have other
disorders and
difficulties, such as
attention
deficit/hyperactivity
disorder, learning
disabilities or
depression, and are at
risk for developing
conduct disorder. Some
younger students
exhibiting
characteristics of
oppositional defiant
disorder may develop a
more serious conduct
disorder later in life.

and areas of need


the students specific symptoms
if the student has any other
associated disorders that need to be
considered at school
successful strategies used at home
or in the community that also could
be used at school.
Create pathways for movement.
Pathways should eliminate the need
to step over objects or between
people.
Be clear on what behaviors are not
negotiable and what consequences
will follow. Be consistent with
consequences.
Use start requests rather than
stop requests. Do requests are
more desirable than dont requests.
Make one request at a time, using a
quiet voice and, when in close
proximity, using eye contact. When
appropriate, offer a choice (e.g., Do
you want to work at your desk or at
the table?).
Pace instruction, allowing a preferred
activity when a non-preferred activity
has been completed.
Maintain predictable classroom
routines and rules for all students.

34/behaviour-complete
%20for%20posting.pdf
Minnesota Association
for Childrens Mental
Health. Fact Sheet for
the Classroom:
Oppositional Defiant
Disorder.
http://www.macmh.org
/publications/fact_shee
ts/ODD.pdf
Center for Mental
Health in Schools at
UCLA. Conduct and
Behavior Problems:
Intervention and
Resources for School
Aged Youth.
http://smhp.psych.ucla
.edu/pdfdocs/
conduct/CONDUCT.pdf
https://www.msu.edu/c
ourse/cep/888/Aggress
ion/Aggression1.htm

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

CD
(Conduct
Disorder)

Conduct disorder is
a condition
characterized by a
persistent pattern of
behaviour in which
the basic rights of
others are ignored.
CODE 42
Conduct disorder
may be a result of
genetics, chaotic
home environments,
the child's
temperament,
physical causes or
neurological factors.
Conduct disorder is
treated through
counselling, usually
focused on
developing
appropriate
behaviour and
coping skills, and
sometimes
medications.

Children and teens with


conduct disorder tend
to be impulsive and
behave in ways that are
socially unacceptable
and often dangerous.
Children with conduct
disorder have four main
types of chronic and
persistent behaviour:
aggressive conduct;
property damage or
theft; lying; and serious
violations of rules.
Conduct disorder may
occur with other
conditions such as
attention
deficit/hyperactivity
disorder or depression;
there are correlations
between conduct
disorder and
oppositional defiant
disorder. Students with
conduct disorder
generally exhibit more
severe forms of chronic
behaviour than
students with
oppositional defiant
disorder. Many young
children with
oppositional defiant
disorder may develop
conduct disorder as
they get older. Mild
forms of conduct
disorder tend to
improve as the child
grows older; however,
without intervention
conduct disorder can

Meet with the student and parents


early in the school year to discuss
how the school can support this
student's needs related to conduct
disorder. This could include finding
out about:
o the student's strengths,
interests and areas of need
o specific symptoms that may
affect the student at school
o any other associated
disorders that need to be
considered at school
o successful strategies used at
home or in the community
that also could be used at
school.
Use "start" requests rather than
"stop" requests. "Do" requests are
more desirable than "don't" requests.
Make one request at a time, using a
quiet voice and, when in close
proximity, using eye contact.
When appropriate, offer a choice
(e.g., "Do you want to work at your
desk or at the table?").
Describe the desired behaviour in
clear and specific terms to reduce
misunderstanding. Avoid entering into
a discussion or argument about the
behaviour.
Recognize that most behaviour has a
function. Use observation and data to
determine the function of the
behaviour as this will help in
determining appropriate strategies to
implement.

Alberta
Education. Supporting
Positive Behaviour in
Alberta
Schools. http://educati
on.alberta.ca/media/69
7934/behaviourcomplete%20for
%20posting.pdf

Minnesota Association
for Children's Mental
Health. "Fact Sheet for
the Classroom:
Conduct
Disorder."http://www.m
acmh.org/publications/
fact_sheets/Conduct.p
df

Center for Mental


Health in Schools at
UCLA. Conduct and
Behavior Problems:
Intervention and
Resources for School
Aged
Youth. http://smhp.psy
ch.ucla.edu/pdfdocs/co
nduct/conduct.pdf

http://www.sess.ie/cate
gories/emotionaldisturbance-andorbehaviouralproblems/conduct-

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

lead to school failure,


injuries, teenage
pregnancy, mental
health issues and
conflict with the law.

ADHD
Attention
Deficit/
Hyperactivi
ty Disorder

ADHD is considered
to be a
neurobiological
disability that
interferes with the
ability to sustain
attention or focus on
a task and control
impulsive behaviour.
We may all have the
same difficulties,
but for some people,
the problem is so
chronic and
persistent that it
gets in the way of
daily life at home,
school and work,

Inattention
-

Easily distracted from


the task at hand by
noises or the
environment

Looking around
frequently

Staying focused on one


activity

Develop a behaviour support plan in


which inappropriate behaviours are
replaced with appropriate ones. When
appropriate, involve the student in
the development of this plan.
Explicitly teach, reinforce and provide
opportunities to practise social and
life skills, including how to:
o understand one's own
feelings
o be friendly
o read social cues
o talk to peers
o manage anger
o make good decisions
o solve problems
o succeed in school.
Maintain predictable classroom
routines and rules for all students.
Provide encouragement and praise.
Reward appropriate classroom
behaviour.
Organize the physical environment to
reduce distractions.
o Seat student with AD/HD near
teachers desk or in the area
of the class where the teacher
spends most of the time.
o Surround the student with
other students who are good
role models.
o Avoid distracting stimuli.
Establish three to five basic classroom
rules. State rules in positive terms in
student-friendly language. Post them
and refer to them frequently.
o For example: In our

disorder/tips-learningand-teach

Canadian Centre for


ADD/ADHD Advocacy
Canada
(http://www.caddac.ca)

Alberta Education:
http://education.albert
a.ca/admin/supporting
student/diverselearnin
g/adhd.aspx

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

and in social
settings.
CODE 58
Current research
has shown that
ADHD is caused by a
deficiency of specific
neurotransmitters in
a specific set of
brain circuits.
Depending on which
areas of these
circuits are involved,
the person may be
distractive,
impulsive or
hyperactive.
We also know that

Daydreaming

Not focusing on speaker


when spoken to
-

verbal instructions
-

to run in families

through
generations.
-

Unable to pay attention


to details

Completing work
without being reminded

and seems to be
passed down

Misinterpreting
instructions

genetics may play a


part. ADHD is likely

Unable to remember

Losing things

Difficulty organizing

belongings and work


-

Difficulty starting things

Forgetting normal
routines

Hyperactivity
-

Fidgeting and squirming

Problems remaining
seated

classroom, all students will:


be ready to learn
treat others with kindness
keep hands and feet to
themselves
make safe choices.
Use monitoring strategies to minimize
opportunities for off-task or disruptive
behaviour.
o Establish eye contact with
students with AD/HD prior to
giving instructions to the
class.
o Remove nuisance items.
Certain objects (such as
rubber bands and noisy toys)
can divert the attention of
students with AD/HD in the
classroom.
Develop routines for transitions
between activities.
o Alert students to changes in
routines that will be coming
up.
o Review the expectations for
behaviour when there is a
special presentation or guest
speaker. Large gatherings and
performances can be difficult
for students with AD/HD.
Establish low-key cueing systems.
o Post reminders on students
desks.
Create opportunities for movement.
Structure activities and assignments
to engage students interest.
Give clear and concise directions.

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

Talking excessively and


at inappropriate times

Often running and


climbing

Stands instead of sitting


at the table

Unable to settle into a


quiet activity

Constantly on the go

Frequently handling or
touching objects

Impulsivity
-

Butting into
conversations

Blurting out answers in


the classroom

Beginning work before


instructions given

Disturbing others who


are playing

Grabbing belongings of
other people

Touching, grabbing and


hitting other people

Problems waiting for


turn or standing in line

Teach strategies for active listening:


o Eyes on the speaker
o Pencils down
o Hands on desk
o Think along!

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

LD
Learning
Disability

Students with
learning disabilities
have many patterns
of strengths and
weaknesses in
receiving,
processing and
expressing
information. These
individuals are of
average or above
average intelligence
but they experience
unexpected
academic difficulties
as a result of
processing
difficulties.
CODE 54

Making impulsive
decisions
Areas of processing that
may be affected include
phonological, language,
visual (visual spatial,
visual-motor), attention,
memory, speed of
processing and
executive functioning.
Learning disabilities are
more common in some
medical populations,
including individuals
born prematurely and
those with epilepsy.
These students may
experience a higher
incidence of ear
infections and allergies,
and hearing may be
affected intermittently.
Learning disabilities are
lifelong and can affect
individuals in
nonacademic ways in
their daily lives,
including their social
interactions, selfesteem and
employment.

Provide explicit instruction with clear,


detailed explanations and
demonstrations outlining concepts,
steps and rationales.
Use graphic organizers and visuals to
help the student organize and
remember information (e.g., semantic
map of a topic or concept, pictures of
steps for problem solving, a planning
board with the sequence of activities
for the day).
Provide multisensory presentations,
whenever possible. Pair written
instructions with oral instructions.
Provide visual or hands-on prompts, if
needed.
Provide "scaffolded" instruction (e.g.,
build on what the student knows by
providing assistance, modelling,
guidance and collaboration to move
the student toward working
independently.
Provide more intensive, direct and
ongoing instruction in reading and
writing, including:
o phonics and word decoding
o vocabulary
o reading comprehension
o written language, including
planning.
Break down tasks into steps and
provide step-by-step prompts. Provide
feedback for each step.
Provide extra time to complete
assignments or tests, or reduce the

http://www.learnalbert
a.ca/content/inmdict/ht
ml/learning_disabilities
.html

Alberta
Education. Unlocking
Potential: Key Components
of Programming for
Students with Learning
Disabilities.http://educatio
n.alberta.ca/media/511999
/unlocking.pdf
National Center for
Learning Disabilities.
"Especially for
Teachers." http://www.ncld.
org/at-school/especiallyfor-teachers
Learning Disabilities
Association of America.
"For
Teachers." http://www.ldan
atl.org/aboutld/teachers/in
dex.asp
-

http://canlearnsociety.c
a/how-we-help/
o Then go to the
top and click
on Learn With
Us then a
sidebar on the
right has Take

Personal Strategy Toolbox


Ed Psych

amount of work to complete.


Provide a range of opportunities for
the student to demonstrate learning.

Ten Spotlight
Series you
can download
ADHD and LD
resources like
tips for
working
memory. Go to
the PDF
download
rather than
watch the
video as that is
quicker.