Survive and Thrive in a Self Contained Classroom
When I walked into my first LIFE Skills classroom I was teaching so many different leveled students so many subjects (seemingly at the same time) I really didn’t know where to start. Like a lot of new teachers, I thought I could teach in self contained like I taught before- whole groups where I “performed” and called students to perform back on cue. Problem is self contained does NOT work that way. When you ask for a performance, you’ll likely get something you did not anticipate. I was in the classroom with non-responsive students, high functioning Autistic students, emotionally disabled students with a bevy of behavior problems, and students with Down Syndrome and varying levels of functioning depending on the task. I had a hard time planning lessons. After much trial and error, I found that the following things were absolutely necessary to survive and thrive in a self contained classroom.