DCD (Developmental Cognitive Disabilities)

According to Cannella-Malone, Konrad & Pennington (2015), reading and writing instruction should occur simultaneously, and that lessons should be broken down into manageable chunks, using graphic organizers, outlines and writing prompts.  Assistive technologies such as spell-check, and speech-to-text are also beneficial.

Hoagie’s Gifted Education presents several methods in teaching writing skills to students with disabilities.  They state, “Teachers in inclusive classrooms regularly face the difficult task of having to modify the curriculum to reach all of their students, many of whom have special needs. Students with disabilities, whether physical, emotional, or cognitive in nature, respond to the curriculum differently from other students. For example, depending on the disability itself and other factors affecting their ability to succeed academically, students may need modifications such as advance and graphic organizers, instructional scaffolding, additional practice and time to complete assignments, and/or alternative media (e.g., large-print materials, audiotapes, or electronic materials). Without specific modifications, the standard curricular materials can be inadequate for these students, and too frequently they can find themselves blocked from access to essential aspects of the curriculum. Teachers must adjust the materials or their presentation to break down the barriers and assist these students in learning.”

MentalHelp.net offers four suggestions for effective teaching methods for people with intellectual disabilities (ID):

  1. Breaking down learning tasks
  2. Modifying the teaching approach, such as supplying kinesthetic opportunities,
  3. Using visual aids
  4. Providing direct and immediate feedback.

Cannella-Malone, H. I., Konrad, M. & Pennington, R. C. (2015).  ACCESS! Teaching writing skills to students with intellectual disability. Council for Exceptional Children, May/June, 47(5), 272-280.

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