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Significant Support Needs & COVID-19
The Significant Support Needs Network Team and the Significant Support Needs Task Force Members will be offering SSN Office Hours during the 2021 School Year. Office Hours will be offered on the following Wednesdays from 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM:
- August: 18, 25
- September: 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
- October: 6, 20
- November: 3, 17
- December: 1, 15
- January: 12, 26
- February: 2, 16
- March: 2, 16
- April: 6, 20
- May: 4
Registrations must be completed by 10:00 am the day before (Tuesday) for each Wednesday office hours session.
The Significant Support Needs Network (SSN Network) is committed to providing support to educators of students with the most significant needs throughout Colorado due to COVID-19. We understand that teaching remotely is a new experience for Colorado educators. Not only must you consider what content should be taught, educators must determine how students with Significant Support Needs will access instruction since many of these students need significant modifications and physical support. Our team is committed to provide support by connecting educators to methods to deliver instruction, materials, and resources.
Consistent with our mission, we are providing a variety of evidence-based practices and supports. These shared resources do not serve as CDE guidance for delivering services remotely, and we encourage all educators to seek guidance from your district or BOCES regarding specific practices, platforms, and resources.
Resources for Remote Learning
To assist educators, we are providing links to resources to consider during the time of remote instruction due to COVID-19. This list does not cover all possible resources but does include resources that educators have found to be helpful. The listed resources are provided for information only. The Colorado Department of Education does not endorse, represent, or warrant the accuracy or reliability of any of the information, content, services, or other materials provided by these educational service providers. Any reliance upon any information, content, materials, products, services, or vendors included on or found through this listing shall be at the discretion of the user.
Links to websites with evidence-based resources, including COVID-19 specific resources for families, educators, administrators, and community partners.
- The ARC - COVID-19 Resources for People With Disabilities, Families, and Service Providers. State and local links to resources in the community.
- Council for Exceptional Children: Free membership to teachers and Resources for teaching remotely.
- TASH (Advocacy Organization): TASH’s response to the COVID-19 crisis and supports for students with complex needs.
- Coronavirus PCS symbols-PCS update: Boardmaker symbols related to COVID-19 and impact on learning
- Covid-19 Social Story: Social Story to help students understand COVID-19, the need to wash hands, why schools are closed, learning online/remotely, the need to be flexible and learn at home, when loved ones are sick, and when the student may be sick.
- Educating All Learners During the Covid-19 Disaster: An alliance dedicated to equity for complex learners. This site is created by organizations committed to resource sharing and community-building that supports the efforts of the education community to meet the needs of students with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Learning Keeps Going: A site developed especially for teaching during the COVID-19 crisis. Supports for teachers and parents including learning and legal resources.
Links to specific tools for educators, families, and caregivers are below and sorted into specific categories to assist in selecting resources to meet your needs.
- How to Use Prompts Effectively and Efficiently: Article on prompt levels and how to use them.
- Interoception Daily Activity List ;Daily activities to improve interoception, to make it easier to understand body signals (e.g., hunger, thirst, anger, anxiety) from Kelly Mahler.
- AssistiveWare Core Word Classroom: Online resource for teaching communication and interaction across the day. Free account; check out the resources including the section on Core Words at Home. FREE
- Boardmaker activities to go: Free, thematic, leveled, printable. Sign up for a 30 day trial, by starting a free community account.
- Communication Matrix: Assessment and planning tools for students with complex communication needs functioning at the early stages of communication.
- Picture Dictionary: This dictionary contains more than 2500 illustrations with translations in more than 50 languages.
- Storyline Online: Storyline Online is a collection of interactive books.
- Wondering How to Coach Communication Partners?: from Rachel Madel - AAC Coaching Communication Partners
Resources Spanning Multiple Academic Topics
- Math and Reading Choice boards for activities at home shared by Kansas teachers (grade level contains one math and one reading each)
- ABCya: Provides free online activities and games (K-6) to help improve elementary students' reading and math skills. All of the content is accessible online and organized by grade level and topic area.
- BOOM Cards: Through June – free teacher accounts to all resources – parents/students are also free to play - creating online sorting and selection activities.
- Exemplar text supports: A library of companion texts that go with the exemplar texts called out in the Appendix of the Common Core State Standards. These books are accessible, open-source texts that you and your students can read online, on a reader that uses epub files, or offline as PowerPoint files or printed versions of the books. FREE
- Scholastic Learn at Home: This free resource provides 20 days of articles and stories (can be read using built-in speech synthesis), videos, and fun learning challenges. Children can complete them anytime, in any order. FREE
- Special Needs for Special Kids: Teacher made lessons – 10 days of lessons social studies and science – new lessons available every two weeks – FREE – specifically for students with complex needs
- Online Instruction- Remote learning- isolation ideas: Many resources especially for math but also includes many different topics including streaming sessions, special topics (e.g., zoos, museums), podcasts for kids, and art, music, and physical activities to do at home. MUCH MORE!
- Happy Numbers: Helps PK-8 teachers differentiate instruction and deepen students’ conceptual understanding of math. Uses visual modeling, virtual manipulatives and multiple representations of math concepts to give students the opportunity to explore the meaning behind the math.
- Life Skills Math Pack: Differentiated functional math (33 pages)
- DLM® At-Home Learning Resources for teachers: Suggestions are offered in to assure that students with significant cognitive disabilities are engaged, focused, and learning.
- DLM® At-Home Learning Resources for Parents: Resources and ideas on using offered for parents to assure that their students with significant cognitive disabilities are engaged, focused, and earning.
- Headsprout and Raz-kids: Headsprout -Online reading program that adapts to the needs of your students. Raz-kids- digital library of leveled books and quizzes for interactive reading practice. Both of these are FREE
- Readworks: Readworks.org - free reading texts - teachers can assign passages/articles and includes questions or parents can have access to select their own reading materials
- TarHeel Reader: Tar Heel Reader, a collection of free, easy-to-read, and accessible books on a wide range of topics. Each book can be speech enabled and accessed using multiple interfaces, including touch screens, the IntelliKeys with custom overlays, and 1 to 3 switches.
- Zoo Animals: Symbol Supported Reading Comprehension K-12 (30 pages)
- Zoo Animals (2): Easy reading comprehension activities K-12 (42 pages)
- Appy Therapy; Handwriting Heroes is a multisensory handwriting curriculum that teaches children how to form their letters through animations, stories and song. Ipad app is being offered free of charge FREE
- DLM Writing resources: Eye gaze frames and flip charts, alternate pencils FREE
- Quill: A free online resource which provides over 300 research-based writing, grammar, and proofreading activities for students. Teachers and students can sign up for a free account to access activities and receive immediate feedback on their work. Teachers can also remotely track student progress and growth.
Links to websites that offer tools for online/distance learning for educators, families, and caregivers.
- Anchor, Read, Apply: Three modules instruct how to use Anchor-Read-Apply to teach students to comprehend text through listening or reading.
- CEC Webinar: Teaching Special Education Online During COVID-19. Veteran online instructors help identify steps to move online and strategies for adapting the lessons already in motion to this new format.
- Center on Online Learning and Students with Disabilities.
- Christie Reeve Podcast - Making Distance Education Work in Special Education – podcast (Episode 31)
- Distance Learning for Special Educators: FAQ's, Tips for families, educators and online resources.
- Distance Learning: 8 Tips to Get Your Child Ready to Learn at Home : From Understood.org
- The Hexagon Tool: A tool to help better understand how a new or existing program or practice fits into an implementing site’s existing work and context.
- How to Create an Accessible Presentation: Webinar plus guidance documents on creating accessible presentation.
- PEAK Parent Center Webinars: Guidance to teachers and families
- Screencastify: Resource for making videos for families, premium free through end of April.
- School Virtually: Resource on teaching remotely and online
- Teaching Remotely in Times of Need: A presentation by Torrey Trust with links to videos and many online resources.
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