What You Should Know About Inclusive Classrooms

Schools for children with learning disabilities

When asked about schools for children with learning disabilities, many parents still picture separate special needs schools, where children learn away from their neurotypical peers. While this situation may help children with special needs learn at their own pace, they are often left out from educational opportunities. More recently, educators with experience working with special needs children have been advocating for inclusive classrooms, where children with and without learning disabilities study together. The best schools for children with learning disabilities utilize an inclusive classroom model.

Making a classroom inclusive is more involved than simply putting all the students together and teaching. It is important to make the classroom a safe, comfortable space for all students. This may involve the use of seat cushions and sensory toys for children who are sensitive to touch, special seating arrangements, or providing a quiet space where students who feel overwhelmed can unwind.

Organization is key to helping integrate students, and schools for children with learning disabilities often maintain a strict schedule throughout the day. This allows children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other learning disabilities to know what to expect and to feel comfortable in a secure environment. Organizing the classroom so that areas of high energy activities and areas where children are expected to focus and listen are separate and distinct will also make a difference in the students’ levels of participation.

The most important part of any inclusive classroom is the students, and teachers and students can work together to help children with learning disabilities in school succeed. Neurotypical students can work with other students to help them learn subjects that they are struggling to grasp. Friendships between students can help children with special needs learn what to expect in daily life, as well as helping their neurotypical peers become more tolerant and compassionate.

When looking for a school for children with special needs, parents should consider looking into inclusive classrooms to see if the arrangement is right for their family.