Skip to 0 minutes and 10 secondsHello, everyone. You are welcome to week five of this course. This week is about adapting the classroom to encourage full and equal opportunity for children to enhance learning. When children are supported by their families and their school and the school is supported by the community, then optimal learning can take place. If you have a child with a learning disability in your class, how do you adapt the learning environment to suit the child? Understanding diversity and how diverse needs impact learning will assist with this strategy. And if you're a parent, you have very good knowledge of your child, which is instrumental to the development of that child and help the teacher understand how that child adapts.

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 secondsIt is also about consistency, where there's a follow-through from school to the home and vice versa. If you're a teacher, you should find some helpful guidelines for developing activities in the classroom. Now, this week is about implementation. We look at strategies. How does it happen in the classroom? So we have talked about how the community, the school community and outside community, support inclusion in this process. And I will bring it down to the implementation in the classroom. This week will be facilitated by Emma and Tiny.

Changing classroom practice

Image of course layout with focus on the word classroomWelcome to week 5. This week we discuss the various ways of supporting active learning and engagement in the classroom.

When teachers work with the class to create a group bond to enable a conducive learning space, they have to pay particular attention that the children with special needs are fully included within the class. Inclusion may not happen without deliberate planning on the part of the class teacher as well as the wider school community.

Adopting this approach will mean changing existing practices, and that is the essence of inclusive practice: the removal of barriers that prevent children from learning rather than expecting the children to fit into practices that do not meet their needs.

Experienced teachers and lecturers Dr Emma McKinney and Dr Sindiswa (‘Tiny’) Stofile will be talking about what teachers can do in the classroom.

Please take note that we will be answering your questions in Week 6 again. You are welcome to post your questions in Step 5.12 by Thursday.

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This video is from the free online course:

Education for All: Disability, Diversity and Inclusion

University of Cape Town