“Special needs teaching” refers to the practice of educating students with learning difficulties, in a specialized manner which addresses their individual needs and differences. It involves a host of individually planned and systematically monitored arrangements of teaching procedures, equipment, materials and settings. Teaching children with special needs requires teachers who are specially trained to cater to problems faced by such children. The primary goal of any special education teacher is to ensure that he or she understands the exact learning difficulties faced by each child and make necessary arrangements for the child’s advancement.
The challenges faced by Special Needs Teachers
The nature of challenges faced by a special needs teacher on a regular basis differs greatly in comparison with those of a regular teacher. Even if he or she faces numerous challenges along the way, the primary task of a special needs teacher is to implement practices that work for such students, keeping in mind their unique abilities and challenges. Below is a list of challenges that a special needs teacher might face in the line of work.
- Non-instructional responsibilities: Being a special needs teacher requires work which often takes them out of the classroom and does not fall within the scope of regular teaching. This is because of the nature of children they are dealing with. As most children have special needs, it hampers their ability to interact normally. Hence, proper care should be taken to ensure that no child is left out.
- Handling an inclusive classroom: Inclusive classrooms contain both special needs children, as well as students without special needs. As a teacher, it is his or her job to ensure that all the students get along.
- The difficulty of teaching children with special needs: Many special needs students are plagued with restlessness or other behavioral issues that may affect the way they learn and perform in class. Other problems like short attention spans or an inability to grasp lessons easily can hinder their learning. With their specialized training and knowledge, special needs teachers can tactfully handle the situation and take the necessary steps to ease the process of learning for the child.
The Rewards of being a Special Needs Teacher
Many people regard special education and the role of Special Needs education teachers as a contribution to the society at large. Their job deals with helping students overcome their challenges. They ensure that not a single child is left out and that everybody receives an equal amount of attention.
Being a special needs teacher is one of the noblest things a person can do. In a normal setting, many children who have special educational needs and require specialized help, are often overlooked from an educational standpoint. By imparting the requisite knowledge and skills to children with special needs, a special needs teacher is effectively helping the individuals lead a better life and thus contributing to the society at large.