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The students are both regular and special ed, but our regular ed would
never be so classified "in the free". All of the students have severe
emotional and or behavioral problems and learning disabilities. All have
been abused. Most are gang members or wannabe's. I have been reading the
discussions concerning discipline and classroom management and have to
laugh. Folks, you ain't seen discipline problems!!
I would be very interested in hearing from other teachers who have dealt
with this type of student. Needless to say, art projects are a challenge
.... forget X-acto knives! Their education, although they are supposedly
high school, is extremely weak. Many have not attended school in three or
more years, yet they are placed in the 9th grade or higher. Reading levels
vary from 2nd grade up to grade level. In an attempt to incorporate art
history into a maskmaking project I used a video on African Art and the
European reaction to it in the early 1900s. After 2 days of watching the
video and discussions, I found that not one student ( out of 50) could name
a single country in Europe or identify where it was on a map. Talk about
back up and re-teach!
I would love to know what kinds of research has been done on educating this
kind of student and hearing about other's experiences with them. I have
noticed so many differences in abilities and learning styles that I would
love to compare with other teachers. I just don't know of any other art
teachers working in similar circumstances.
By the way, I'm not new to teaching deviant learners in fact you could say
that I am a "well-seasoned" teacher (as opposed to old!).