The New Kid On the Block: Learning To Adapt Your Approach When New Students With Differing Needs Enter Your Classroom

By: Mary McLaughlin | Aug 22, 2019

You’ve attended all the staff meetings.  You’ve decorated your room. You’ve reorganized the classroom shelves, you’ve rearranged the furniture to a new configuration in an attempt to maximize space. Pencils are sharpened, name tags applied to the desks, cubbies and lockers are labeled. You’re ready to meet your new students and if ...
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False Assumptions About What Special Needs Students Can’t Do

By: Mary McLaughlin | Aug 5, 2019

People really just slay me. I was perusing a Special Education Teachers group page on social media today. A member posted that a parent questioned one of her research-based Teaching strategies (which we all use). Say What? A Teacher had been asked if students with special needs were “able” to do group work. Wait, what? Able?  ...
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Expand Your Tool Box: 5 Behavioral Strategies to Try Out Next Year

By: Jon Konen | Aug 1, 2019

Some of us have new tool boxes with just a few of the latest tools, some of us have large tool boxes that include everything we’ve collected over the years, but in either case, we should all be expanding our tool boxes with both new and old tools with proven ...
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How Much Progress Should Be Expected From a Student’s IEP

By: Mary McLaughlin | Jul 30, 2019

The Implications of  the Endrew F. Case As Decided By The United States Supreme Court Get Out Of the Way:  School’s Out! If you close your eyes and open your ears, listening for the sound of it, you just might hear it. Shhh… There it is. Low in the distance, you can hear the ...
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What Do You Do With a Degree In Special Education?

By: Mary McLaughlin | Jul 11, 2019

You’ve Graduated, Have Student Loans to Pay Off, But Just Don’t Want To Teach… You Still Have a Surprising Number of Options If I’ve seen it once, I’ve seen it a hundred times. Students graduate high school with not a single clue what they want to do with their future. Their parents practically ...
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Professional Learning Communities: Creating and Sustaining Bonds to Bring the Best Out of Every Teacher

By: Mary McLaughlin | Jul 10, 2019

My dryer died today. It was unceremonious, from what I was told. It just quit in all its fold and fluff glory. The very thought of this betrayal hurt. It is only three years old. It has no gadgets, no bells, no whistles. It’s plain stock white. I wipe her down weekly. We make ...
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10 Things You Should Not Do This Summer: Permission to Pause

By: Staff | Jun 7, 2019

Burn out can come at any time, but more so at the end of the school year. After 20 years in education, this year has been one of my most difficult and stressful. In years past, I usually start dreaming about the books, professional development, podcasts, and articles I want ...
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How One Special Education Teacher Found Respite Care for Her Own Special Needs Son During an Emergency

By: Mary McLaughlin | May 28, 2019

My husband and I are feeling pretty lucky right now. Last Friday, my husband, a 24-year paramedic, had a significant cardiac episode. Here’s where the luck comes in:  he had just finished transporting a patient to the emergency room at a hospital in the Mississippi River Delta region of Missouri. A long way ...
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Helpful, Watchful Eyes Keep Us All In Check

By: Mary McLaughlin | Apr 4, 2019

A Rose By Any Other Name “What's in a name? that which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet.” –William Shakespeare I got married a year ago. While it’s a big-deal event in one’s life, and it definitely was for Jack and me, we have each been married previously. We ...
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Don’t Leave, We Need You! 8 “Cries” and “Whys” For Not Leaving Teaching

By: Jon Konen | Mar 27, 2019

One random Wednesday in March our staff all wore red to school. It signified red for public education. We talked about “why” we should wear red all day! It made me proud to be part of this one day movement, and many have pledged to continue to promote this cause. With ...
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