Moore College of Art and Design Seminar- Portal to reaching students with special needs

These are my notes and photos from an amazing seminar- I’ll try to flush them out eventually, but I’ve already waited to long to post this so here it is:

PETER GEISSER– artist and teacher of the deaf

Makes stained glass. With Mika Seeger makes murals- mosaic and stone. 
“Where have we come from? who are we? where are we going?” Mural made with kids…
“Real”- one word to describe teaching with the deaf. 
Stop doing harm!! Do No Harm! Be cautious. Don’t let the kids hate art because of you. 
Academic humility… You don’t necessarily need the money to get you the knowledge to teach your students.
Language is the challenge in deafness. Art is not a magically key. 
Connection in ability to see and connect in brain…houses in perspective example…
Nature of the learner (high variability) – individuality  based
Visual noise- hearing the art… 
image
Beverly Holden Johns 
Children with behavior problems are like a mystery and we have to become detectives…
Lessons:
-remaining calm in a crisis
-send a message that we are not afraid of them and that we are accepting of them so that we are not taken advantage of 
-clear expectations and structure- let them know exactly what is expected of them… Don’t change them!!! If you do explain why and how
-do what you say you will do and follow your expectations… Stick through it, stick with them and don’t lose their trust.
Strategy:
– never take good behavior for granted- reinforce it (Always!)
-monitor and actually reinforce it- have a system.
Art gives us the opportunity to reinforce them- 
Check yoself!
Resources utilized:
None of us ever have all the answers. Duh. 
We are all life long learners…
image
Julian Dorff
We are all special needs! 🙂
Universal design for learning… 
  Multiple means of reprsentation
  Multiple means of expression
  Multiple means of engagement 
The art room is designed for this!
Start by listening and watching- it takes time, which is a problem. We need to slow down and do some research first. 
We can’t base instruction on labels first- it needs to be on the student- we need to know The student. 
First strategy know the student.
Second root instruction in the lives of the students. Buy in to their lives
Third strong images- story telling. Pictures. Relatable and recognizable.
The strategies aren’t really unique just good teaching and designing a curriculum to meet the needs of students UDL
Resources:
Exemplar approaches phamplet… Making the art room an accessible place (liesle)
The Kennedy center- VSA international art program teacher resource guide
Documentary- including Samuel 
Low Expectations… From paraprofessionals… Etc. give them a list of what your expectations are for them… 
image
Panel Q&A
image
Peter-challenge- someone saying a child can’t draw
Julie- out of the box… Role play. Relevancy and content to the lesson with the play. 
Beverly- tools… 5 tops strategies…build on strengths, start everyday with what the child does well and build with momentum for success, build choice-empower and teach them that they are in control of their destiny, build relationships, and attribute success to their efforts- let them know they are doing well because they are trying.
(Lynne) bad school- bad kids… No one is saying that- breaks heart to hear it said- …
Julie- art Ed associations help us grow in this field… Reigned teachers help. Paras can be helpful.
Peter- the student can be the resources themself. Ask them! What can I do to make this work?? 
Beverly- resources- council for exceptional children and behavioral disorders… Brainstorming for the problems with colleagues… Being on list serves and discussing and sharing ideas. Legislative- communicate with state policy makers! How it is impacting children in the classroom. 
Advocating for children with special needs
Julie- a situation close to home made her realize that teachers need more support and students need advocating for
Peter- “you’re a real artist” … A personal story… He can do it…he can teach them. We can…
Beverly- “Sally can” was 10 yo when she first came to school. she kept being sent home from school until the ADA act said she had to be in school. 
Reflecting…
Richard- I gave him the space to succeed with the risk of failing. He was uncomfortable with his art even though his first few pieces were quite successful and I completely encouraged him along the way. After further encouragement from his classroom teacher he eventually came around. One day he came to me and apologized for being rude or something like that( I should have wrote it down then). The next day he came into my room and said to me that he would like me to know that I can hang up any of his art work now. Any of the projects. From here on out. 
It should be noted, that at the beginning of the school year his teacher thought that the class (all the students) were not capable of some of the higher level assignments I had. She told me their level was more on par with kindergarten even though their age is 8th grade. So not knowing the kids at all, I kept the first assignment simple but had high expectations. They all met them exceedingly. Every class I have raised the bar and they continue to meet my goals, sometimes through struggle but nonetheless we get there. The teacher is impressed. She says their art looks like work you would frame. I think her expectations were raised.
Making the art room meaningful and accessible for all learners
Round table discussion
Meaningful vs accessible 
Projects vs. creative activity
Elizabeth Gude 
Ways of seeing- John Berger

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