Has anyone else had an aide in their classroom involving just helping one individual student. This year I am getting a wheelchair bound student. She is suppose to have an aide with her all day. While I am working up a plan to make the room more accessible for the child, what should I expect out of the aide. I want to make sure that I have certain expectations in place. While I work in a Title 1 school and we have people coming in and out all the time, I am a little nervous having someone there all day each day. I also heard that this particular aide is very verbal and not always nice. I am trying to give her a clean slate before she comes to me, but I have some concerns which I hope do not come into play. Can anyone give me some advice as to how to make this new situation feel doable? Maybe I am just overly nervous about this.
It's a good idea that you are trying to start on a clean slate with the aide. Her responsibility will be first for the one on one that she will be with. She can help some of the other students if you want her too, but she has to make sure that her student comes first in her work.
Our school has several aides for special needs kids and they are mainstreamed into our classes, so over the last three years I have had 2 students who came in with an aide. It is an interesting situation and I was nervous too, but it does work out. First have a place for the student and the aide to sit next to her. In our school, we have a few experienced aides who often will modify the classroom work on the spot depending on the student's ability. Otherwise you may need to have that chat with the aide and find out what your student's abilities are, and if work needs to be adapted. Some of the aides love to help you out in the classroom with other students etc. ,if they are trying to let their student have more independence in their work,etc.--other aides focus just on their student. My autistic student could do our math, but not much in the way of language arts and so the aide had supplemental work from our special day teacher to fill in with. The other student had severe behavior issues and so his aide had to remove him from class many times to settle him down, and she just handled it, and I supported her any way I could. So each situation is very different. I talked to the class about both situations when the student was out of the room so we could discuss how to be supportive and that we don't tease about it, etc. Just be proactive with your new aide and share what you're about, I let mine know that if they had any questions to please ask-- If this aide has been with this child last year you can check with the teacher who had the student what worked and didn't, etc. Hope that's helpful !
This year I had a student who had a private nurse but not an aid. Actually, he had several nurses over the course of the year. Most were very helpful to all the students as well as me. They became an intregal part of the class. I provided a comfortable place to sit, made them feel welcome and hopefully, made them feel as though they were part of the staff rather than an outsider.
Good luck, I hope it works out well for you and your student.
I've had aides throughout this past school year, also. However, I teach middle school so the aides weren't with me the entire day, they moved with their student when the bell rang.
I agree with the PP in providing a comfortable place to sit, a few kind, passing comments....and then just get on with what you would normally do!
I, also, was somewhat nervous when I realized there would be "adults" in my classroom most of the day, but I came to really like it!
I have had aides a number of times in my classroom. It has worked out pretty much like all the other posters have said. I always have a place for the aide to sit by the child they are assigned. Depending on the situation, I place the child first. Sometimes that means they sit at the table with the other children, sometimes they have a desk apart. It's funny, the other children always accept the aide as part of the class, and will tell others things like, "you can't sit there, that's Mrs. Donna's seat" like she's one of them. Our aides are wonderful (right now), but I have had the occasional "contrary" one. Since our aides are for special ed. kids, the special ed. teacher is who the aides "answer to". So if I have a problem, I talk to the sped. teacher first to try and work it out.
I know it can be intimidating to have other adults in your classroom, at first. But we are so used to it in my school, that I would feel odd if someone wasn't coming in and out all day.
I had an Aide one year but she did not stay the entire time. The child was pulled out for some math and language arts, and then teh Aide came in for the remainder of LA time and SS time so he could be included. She was great, though. She would help him with whatever he needed, and during Social Studies time, she would pull a small group of other Sped kids (I was the designated Sped room that year, so if they had an IEP, they were in my room) and read the textbook with them. They loved it. She would always make sure to pull one or two of the other students in too so no one felt left out.
I would give her a comfortable place to sit, and if she is there before school starts, invite her to eat lunch with you so that you two can get to know each other. This way you can find out exactly what she will be doing for this child, and what her expectation are of being in your class.
I agree with others that what may seem intimidating at first, may turn out to be a welcome routine once procedures are established. One problem sometimes is finding time to communicate with one another during your busy day. You may want to try a communication journal of some kind (composition book?) where you can jot notes back and forth to one another. You can note observations, ask questions, give compliments, address problems, if time does not permit you to deal with them during classtime.