Laura Vaughn

Spring into Science!

In less than a month, education professionals from all over the world will travel to Boston for CEC’s 2017 Convention and Expo. So this week’s FREE tool involves the story of a pair of mallards who raise their ducklings in the city of Boston! The story is part of a K–3 science lesson about life cycles and habitats that you ...

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You’re on the case

The Survival Guide for New Special Education Teachers

For special educators, case management takes top priority, but what does that mean? Case management responsibilities can vary among districts and among schools within those districts. That’s why this week’s FREE tool is a case manager’s checklist to help you establish your responsibilities from day one. Should you create IEP progress reports? Check! Monitor behavior plans? Check! With this list, ...

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Sounds like a plan

Imagine trying to distinguish between the sounds in a word when you’ve never heard some of the sounds before! English learners run into this difficulty while also working to master new content. That’s why this week’s FREE tool is a nifty chart listing the English sounds that students won’t have learned in their first language. Who knew that Spanish doesn’t ...

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TAAFT: There’s an Acronym for That!

Do you ever feel like you’re speaking a foreign language when talking about special education? We know how you feel! That’s why this week’s FREE tool is a handy list of special education acronyms and their meanings to help you keep your ducks (and your letters) in a row. Laminate it and post it on the wall so you’ll never ...

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Schedules you can sail through

Administrators, we have our eye on you with this week’s FREE tool—a table full of scheduling guidelines to help you keep your ship sailing smoothly! By following these tips, you’ll discover how small things like setting limits you can follow and seeking feedback from staff can help you create a schedule that works for everyone. The tool comes from CEC’s ...

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Word problems we can smile about

Students make no secret of the fact that word problems aren’t their fave. But how do teachers feel about writing them? This week’s FREE tool is a table with tips for writing or adapting word problems with reduced linguistic demands. Simplified and predictable language in word problems will make for happier teachers and students alike! The tool comes from CEC’s ...

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You heard, but did you listen?

We’ve all had that in-one-ear-out-the-other experience, including our students. The good news is that everyone can become a better listener with a little training and practice. This week’s FREE tool is a lesson plan for teaching the difference between hearing and listening to help students distinguish between different kinds of input and to learn to focus on the information that ...

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Play your way to better behavior

Challenging behavior can disrupt learning for all students in the classroom, so finding the right method to address this complex issue is of utmost importance. For this week’s FREE tool, we have a table with information on how teachers can address challenging behavior through play.  The tool comes from “Addressing Challenging Behavior and Mental Health Issues in Early Childhood,” a ...

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Fluency that flies

Have your students been working hard on their reading skills all year? This week’s FREE tool is a table with fluency activities you can use to further student practice. Try activities like echo reading and choral reading to help students improve reading rate, accuracy, and expression as they repeat the cadence and expression modeled by their teachers and peers. The ...

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Tips for transition

With a student-to-counselor ratio of 491 to 1, there’s little doubt that school counselors are some of the hardest working professionals in our schools. That’s why this week’s FREE tool is a set of tips to help school counselors (and anyone working with transitioning youth) support students who are transitioning out of middle or high school. From goal setting to ...

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