[LD 4832] Re: Lerning Disabilities in GED classes

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Tanya Brinck tbrinck at student.gsu.edu
Thu Feb 18 23:21:49 EST 2010

Hi Nancy,

I am a Special Education Teacher of high school students in Atlanta, and a Graduate Student at Georgia State University. I have worked with adults for a few years, before I began working in the high school.

When you say learning disabilities, are you referring to students having difficulty reading? If you are, you might stress to the instructors not to overload the students with print while delivering instruction. For example, do not rely on just power point presentations for students to take notes. Many of my students benefit from being exposed to information for longer periods of time. You might achieve this by suggesting the learners bring tape recorders to the class, so that they might review the tape later at home and avoid missing information. Likewise, if your instructors do use power points or overheads, please provide the learners with a copy, so if they miss something they can catch up later.

I also strongly suggest avoiding teaching that is all lecture, or all seat work - it might be hard for some to focus (it is for me!). Try to include discussions and activities to keep everyone engaged with the content you are teaching. This would probably help all the students in the class become more comfortable with each other, comfortable enough to be able to demonstrate work on the board in front of the class, or to read sections of text aloud in class. I think building a community within the classroom could be very encouraging for these learners.

Do the students need to primarily study out of a GED preparation type book, in order to pass the test? From what I have seen in the past, sometimes the reading level of these passages are too high for some adult learners. In this case, they may be placed in the wrong level class, and may benefit from a pre-GED prep class that focuses on bolstering basic reading and math skills. In other words, you can adjust the instruction, but in the end, the students are going to need to be able to read those passages and answer questions within a specified time frame to pass the tests. They need strong reading skills AND content knowledge to be able to do that.

I'd love to hear more about how the classes are set up.

Good luck,
From: learningdisabilities-bounces at nifl.gov [learningdisabilities-bounces at nifl.gov] on behalf of Reeder, Nancy [nreeder at pima.edu]
Sent: Thursday, February 11, 2010 12:35 PM
To: learningdisabilities at nifl.gov
Subject: [LD 4793] Lerning Disabilities in GED classes

Hi everyone,
I’m Nancy Reeder from Pima Community College Adult Education. We have some students who may appear to have a learning disability but who have not been diagnosed. We have done some workshops on how Instructors might recognize in-class learning disabilities, but would like to do more workshops on how Instructors might adjust their teaching to be more sensitive to student needs. Any thoughts?

Nancy Reeder
Advanced Program Manager
Pima Community College Adult Education
Eastside Learning Center
1630 S. Alvernon
Tucson, AZ 85711

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