Kiwanis

 Fostering Empathy...helping children learn to care for others.  From KidsHealth.org

Can we teach kids to care? Well, it's a big job, but we can start by fostering empathy in our students. To develop empathy, students must be encouraged to become aware of others' feelings and to see situations from alternate points of view. The following discussion questions and activities will help your students explore how to reach out to others, in words and actions.  The link above provides you with a host of lessons on teaching empathy!

HELP CHILDREN TALK ABOUT THEIR FEELINGS.  Use the materials below with your child, students, or other youth you work with. For the entire lesson click here.

You can't tell your friends what's inside your backpack if you don't know what's in there, yourself. Feelings are the same way. Before you can share them with anyone, you have to figure out what feelings you have.

Making a list of your feelings can help. You can do this in your head or by writing it out on a piece of paper or even by drawing pictures. Is something bothering you? Does it make you sad or angry? Do you feel this emotion only once in a while or do you feel it a lot of the time?

When you're trying to figure out your feelings, it might help to remember something that happened and think about how it made you feel. Then you can say, "I feel sad when my friend doesn't play with me" or "I feel angry when my brother always wins at baseball." This can help you figure out your own feelings. It also gives the person you're talking with more information about what's bothering you.

For additional resources, links along the right side of this page are a good place to get started.  Or feel free to call the KidsPriorityOne office at 757-244-5373.

 

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 "Think--Pair--Share"  Learning Strategy For All Ages--Use this in your classroom, homeschool or  use as a study skill! It's fun & reinforces learning!

Think-Pair-Share is a cooperative discussion strategy developed by Frank Lyman and his colleagues in Maryland. It gets its name from the three stages of student action, with emphasis on what students are to be DOING at each of those stages.

 

How Does It Work?
1) Think. The teacher provokes students' thinking with a question or prompt or observation. The students should take a few moments (probably not minutes) just to THINK about the question.

2) Pair. Using designated partners (such as with Clock Buddies), nearby neighbors, or a deskmate, students PAIR up to talk about the answer each came up with. They compare their mental or written notes and identify the answers they think are best, most convincing, or most unique.

3) Share. After students talk in pairs for a few moments (again, usually not minutes), the teacher calls for pairs to SHARE their thinking with the rest of the class. She can do this by going around in round-robin fashion, calling on each pair; or she can take answers as they are called out (or as hands are raised). Often, the teacher or a designated helper will record these responses on the board or on the overhead.

Why Should I Use Think-Pair-Share?
We know that students learn, in part, by being able to talk about the content. But we do not want that to be a free-for-all. Think-Pair-Share is helpful because it structures the discussion. Students follow a prescribed process that limits off-task thinking and off-task behavior, and accountability is built in because each must report to a partner, and then partners must report to the class.

Because of the first stage, when students simply THINK, there is Wait Time: they actually have time to think about their answers. Because it is silent thinking time, you eliminate the problem of the eager and forward students who always shout out the answer, rendering unnecessary any thinking by other students. Also, the teacher has posed the question, and she has EVERYONE thinking about the answer, which is much different from asking a question and then calling on an individual student, which leads some students to gamble they won't be the one out of 30 who gets called on and therefore they don't think much about the question. Students get to try out their answers in the private sanctuary of the pair, before having to "go public" before the rest of their classmates. Kids who would never speak up in class are at least giving an answer to SOMEONE this way. Also, they often find out that their answer, which they assumed to be stupid, was actually not stupid at all...perhaps their partner thought of the same thing. Students also discover that they rethink their answer in order to express it to someone else, and they also often elaborate on their answer or think of new ideas as the partners share. These, it seems, are powerful reasons to employ Think-Pair-Share in order to structure students' thinking and their discussion.

 

From ReadingQuest.org - great tools for today's teachers!

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 MP900316785.JPGTHE ABC'S OF AN IEP 

Navigating the twists and turns of the school system while parenting a child with a disability can be extremely challenging. Having an IEP, or Individualized Educational Plan, can help ease the burden a little. Here are some quick tips to a creating a successful IEP process:

What's an IEP? Learn the ABC's
An Individualized Education Program (IEP) serves as a collaborative action plan for your child's educational success.  Developed during an IEP meeting that will include parents, teachers, and possibly learning specialists, this legally-binding documentation of IEP goals should include academic and behavior goals, progress notes from teachers, how much time will be spent in a regular classroom, and the most appropriate placement.If your child requires additional services, like therapies or an aide, that information will be detailed in the IEP plan. Needless to say, because the provisions of your child are educational future are decided upon during these meetings with teachers, therapists, and other experienced educators. Because of this, parents should always be present and actively participate in every Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting and clearly understand and approve of their child's IEP goals.

IEP Meeting: How to Prepare
Because the stakes-and often tensions-are high during an IEP meeting, it can be tempting to lose focus or fail to communicate what you know to be your child's most important needs.
As you prepare for an IEP meeting, the acronym ABC can be a useful tool to maximize the potential of this all-important gathering.

Become an Advocate. Approach the challenge of IEP deliberations from the stance of an Advocate. Replace emotional reasoning with well-researched justifications for what your child needs to succeed. Enlist other advocates for consultation and support before, during, and after these procedures. 

Build Relationships. It is rarely the school's intention to appear in opposition to the needs you identify for your child. Administrators and teachers are faced with limited resources and difficult determinations of prioritized need. Build relationships during this collaborative process with the professionals who will deliver services to your son or daughter with special needs.

Become Child-CenteredA recent survey of teachers conducted by Curtis Dudley-Marling found that teachers believe IEPs can be effective tools, but the documents don't provide information to guide day-to-day planning. Educators need the perspectives of both you and your child to make the most of the programs available. It's especially important that children understand the purpose of IEP meetings. The best way for this to be achieved is to invite students to their own meetings. 

Involving Special Needs Children in IEP Process
Self-advocacy is one of the most important skills a child with a disability can learn. It will be an essential source of light to guide your child through life. Involvement in the IEP meeting, and participating in developing IEP goals, is a remarkable opportunity for youngsters to learn about their disabilities, practice asking for what they need, and witness their ability to succeed when provided reasonable accommodations. A 2004 research study by Mason and colleagues showed that students who participated in their own IEP meetings knew more about their rights and enjoyed higher self-esteem than their peers who did not.

An IEP meeting can be a challenging experience for educators, parents, and students. Cherish your role as an advocate for the keys that will unlock your child's brightest future. Build relationships with the parties involved, and keep your child the focus of every step of the journey toward his or her tomorrow.

 KidsPriorityOne is always here to help!

  • Search the database,
  • Call us at 757- CHILDREN (244-5373)
  • or after hours 1-800-CHILDREN (800-244-5373)
  • Visit our Calendar and attend an event
  • Read, Read, Read!

 

 

 

 

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How Does It Work?
1) Think. The teacher provokes students' thinking with a question or prompt or observation. The students should take a few moments (probably not minutes) just to THINK about the question.

2) Pair. Using designated partners (such as with Clock Buddies), nearby neighbors, or a deskmate, students PAIR up to talk about the answer each came up with. They compare their mental or written notes and identify the answers they think are best, most convincing, or most unique.

3) Share. After students talk in pairs for a few moments (again, usually not minutes), the teacher calls for pairs to SHARE their thinking with the rest of the class. She can do this by going around in round-robin fashion, calling on each pair; or she can take answers as they are called out (or as hands are raised). Often, the teacher or a designated helper will record these responses on the board or on the overhead.

Why Should I Use Think-Pair-Share?
We know that students learn, in part, by being able to talk about the content. But we do not want that to be a free-for-all. Think-Pair-Share is helpful because it structures the discussion. Students follow a prescribed process that limits off-task thinking and off-task behavior, and accountability is built in because each must report to a partner, and then partners must report to the class.

Because of the first stage, when students simply THINK, there is Wait Time: they actually have time to think about their answers. Because it is silent thinking time, you eliminate the problem of the eager and forward students who always shout out the answer, rendering unnecessary any thinking by other students. Also, the teacher has posed the question, and she has EVERYONE thinking about the answer, which is much different from asking a question and then calling on an individual student, which leads some students to gamble they won't be the one out of 30 who gets called on and therefore they don't think much about the question. Students get to try out their answers in the private sanctuary of the pair, before having to "go public" before the rest of their classmates. Kids who would never speak up in class are at least giving an answer to SOMEONE this way. Also, they often find out that their answer, which they assumed to be stupid, was actually not stupid at all...perhaps their partner thought of the same thing. Students also discover that they rethink their answer in order to express it to someone else, and they also often elaborate on their answer or think of new ideas as the partners share. These, it seems, are powerful reasons to employ Think-Pair-Share in order to structure students' thinking and their discussion.

Disability Resources

Parents & Educators - Find resources and information on a wide range of disabilities. Also search the KPO Database. »Continue

Childhood Trauma Research

Follow-up to ODU Lecture Series by 3 national experts on the effects and treatment of childhood trauma. Dr. Judity Herman, Dr. John Brier and Dr. Bruce Perry. »Continue