8/20/2019 7:24 PM
It might seem like a little thing, but the titles we use to refer to each other in educational settings set the tone. Paraeducators are one group that often have numerous names by which they are referred in educational settings and often support students with complex communication needs. Their titles include: educational assistants, paraprofessional, aide, one on one, para, teacher assistants, classroom aide, job coach, etc. Why so many names? And what do these titles tell us about their roles? Unfortunately, their titles often tells us very little or lead the paraeducators themselves or others form judgements about their role. Take the title one on one. While it may indicate that the paraeducator only has one student to support, it might also send the message that no one else really works with that child - "Billy has his one on one", that the paraeducator needs to be around the child throughout the school day, that the paraeducator cannot help any other children in the school setting, or that the child is incapable of being without a person by their side. All of these messages might unintentionally result in a child with complex communication needs who is isolated from other educators, other children, and can lead to student dependence on the one on one. While a title can't fix everything - let's start the change by referring to these important support personnel by a more descriptive title. Introducing paraeducators! They are there to support, guide, and educate students with guidance from other educators (teachers, therapists, etc). They work alongside the teacher and other educators and they make a difference! In my years as a teacher I relied on these wonderful partners to educate students with complex communication needs. They are an integral part of our educational system and they should be recognized for the educational services they provide. So what's in a name? Apparently a lot!
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The only way I know that he wants something is because he fusses or whines when he's unhappy or uncomfortable, and he smiles, makes noises or calms down when he's happy and comfortable. Does this statement describe your child?
She doesn't come to me to let me know what she wants, but it's easy for me to figure out, because she tries to do things for herself. She knows what she wants, and her behavior shows me what she wants. If she runs out of something to eat, she will just try to get more, rather than trying to get me to give her more.
Does this statement describe your child?
He knows how to get me to do something for him. He uses some of the kinds of behaviors below to communicate:
Does this statement describe your child?
Each question you will see is related to a certain message that your child might be able to express using a variety of behaviors. Read the question and decide whether your child is able to express the message described using any of the listed behaviors. If the answer is YES, then you must also decide whether your child has mastered the use of each behavior or whether it is still at an emerging stage. Check either the mastered or emerging box next to any behaviors your child uses to express the message. Use the following definitions to decide whether a behavior is mastered or emerging
– Does this independently most of the time when the opportunity arises
– Does this in a number of dierent contexts, and with dierent people
– Does this inconsistently
– Only does this when prompted or encouraged to do so. Only does this in one or two contexts or with one person.