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Teaching Self Advocacy in the Special Ed Classroom

Teaching Self Advocacy in the Special Ed Classroom

Pat Hensley |

I love the spring annual IEP meetings that we have because I have my high school students conduct the meetings. We start preparing for this about 2 months in advance and talk about each section of the IEP and what it means. Then I have the students come up with a script so they can talk about the sections that are most important to them such as present levels of performance, transition plan, goals and objectives and the behavior plan if there is one. Then we come up with a PowerPoint presentation to help them when they can’t remember what to say and they include pictures from some of the job sites that they were at. Since the students do this for every year they have me, after the first year of stage fright, they usually enjoy this time also. After they introduce all the members of the IEP team and begin the PowerPoint, they usually get over their fears because they know I’m right there to help them.

These lessons have been very successful and helped the students throughout the year. I can see a big difference in their confidence level and self esteem by the end of the year because they feel like they have some control over their lives.

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