Today I am linking up with Kyle at Kinder Sped Adventures for week 1 of a 5 week blog hop devoted to special ed. This week is all about scheduling.
Scheduling in any classroom is a big deal, but in the sped room it is HUGE!! Here are a few things I try to think about before I even work on my first draft of a schedule (yes, there are many drafts!!).
1.) My students need movement, so I try to alternate an activity that has students sitting with one that has them moving. For example, we do direct teaching for an hour (sitting) and then we have snack & math centers (moving).
2.) Are there students on a sensory diet? If so, I need to build in time for students to complete the sensory activities.
3.) Are there times I want therapists to push in or pull certain students out of. There are times I have students with many complex allergies, so I plan to have those students in a therapy while the rest of the class does a cooking activity.
Next, I start filling in my blank schedule. First, I add the activities I have no control over such as lunch, music, P.E., etc. Then I start adding in subjects or activities I have to provide (i.e. direct instruction for math, reading, etc.). I finish by filling in the activities that I feel my students need, but aren't necessarily required (i.e. structured play, language based groups, etc.).
Scheduling with Therapists:
While I love my therapists DEARLY, scheduling all of the therapy my students get can be a nightmare. Not all hope is lost, though! Here is the system that works for ME.
I use the same scheduling grid as I do for classroom activities. Then as students are scheduled I write their initials in that block along with the type of therapy. For example, if Jane Doe is going to be at physical therapy I write "JD-PT". If I have 2 therapists for one domain I add their first initial after their title. For example, if PT Julianne was taking Jane Doe instead of PT Michelle, I would write "JD-PTJ"
This system makes it so easy when you are scheduling multiple therapies for students. With this system you never have to look up if a student is available at that time or not. It also eliminates double booking a student.
Do you have any scheduling secrets that work well??? We would love to hear them. Please leave a comment on this post, so we can all learn from each other!
Check out The Bender Bunch's post on scheduling for more great tips!