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Re: special needs student


From: Maggie White (mwhiteaz_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Fri Sep 28 2001 - 08:06:25 PDT wrote:
> Oh My! This sounds a lot like my situation with a special needs student <snip> He scribbles, cannot even > trace around large wooden objects or round circles. Can color in some stencil shapes and seems pleased with > that.


Hope I can word this right: Students with poor eye/hand coordination
often cannot trace around a cut-out shape; they do better when they can
trace the _outline_ of it. In other words, they can usually trace the
negative shape (the "hole" in the stencil) better than the positive
shape (the actual cut-out). Old file folders make good stencils and can
be reinforced with lamination or wide package tape.

If he's able to color in his shapes, he's doing well. Wonder if he
would accept overlapping simple shapes to create new shapes?

> I am all for inclusion as long as the child benefits and the other children
> do not lose anything from it - but we need to be realistic and not follow strict
> guidelines but bend them for what is best for the child and other children!!!!

I agree wholeheartedly here. I'm an advocate of mainstreaming when it's
done right; the SpEd teacher works with the other teachers to make sure
the students are placed in the right classes. I've been very fortunate
to work with good SpEd teachers here.

Try to get a copy of this book: Exceptional Children, Exceptional Art,
by David R. Henley. It is published by Davis. The author provides a
lot of insights into the emotional, behavioral, and physical needs of a
variety of disabilities. While he does give a few concrete ideas for
helping them in art, it is not a recipe book of lessons or activities.
I've found it very helpful over the years. Check online sources like
Alibris for a used copy (find out what it retails for first, though).