The following testimonials are a selection of comments provided when participants complete their post-course evaluation, and evaluate the success of their goals 90 days after passing their course.
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“From implemented strategies, progress has already been seen to happen - demonstrating the usefulness of this training and the theory behind learning and classroom assessments and interventions.
“This course has prepared me to take into account further considerations relating to the successful inclusion of children with VI. In particular, the strategies can be organised into a sort of checklist to be used when children with VI attend High School.
“I have also learnt how to break down tasks so it’s easier for the children to understand and easier to teach each stage at a time. I have been shown lots of activity ideas. I have learnt lots more that we will be using all the time and sharing with other staff.
Motor Coordination Difficulties
“It really was fascinating thinking about how our senses help us learn, how we would feel if we didn't have those senses and how we would have to adapt. I feel it would greatly benefit the staff involved in the next academic year to do this course too.
“I strongly believe in the value of attachment theory and think it has significant application for us as educators. It has the capacity to help teachers better understand their students, be more attuned to their needs, respond to them more appropriately, be more empathic, interpret their behaviour with more accuracy and plan and develop better supports for them. If teachers can better understand their students and meet their needs, they will be supporting the student in their social, emotional, behavioural and cognitive growth and facilitating greater access to the curriculum. Forming positive, supportive relationships can assist students to develop the capacity for establishing secure attachments and have significant lasting impacts in their lives.
Attachment and Trauma
“My classroom practice, and that of my TA has become more effective. I have found the professional support and advice from the team, the forums and the group discussions with colleagues, useful and informative and will definitely be revisiting the course materials to support my practice.
“After doing this course I now evaluate all the lessons I am involved in, especially the literacy lesson I teach. I have now changed the way I work with the less able children of the group, instead of them all doing the same I have given them slightly different ways to learn the sounds and words we work on. I have already seen an improvement in all of them. Working at their pace has definitely helped their learning.
“I have learnt to always approach each lesson as if it is the first with your student. Always have a fresh start. I have learnt to control low level disruption immediately to avoid confrontation and escalating behaviour.
Understanding and Supporting Behaviour
“It has been a considerable time since I completed this course and have been able to use what I have learned supporting Child B with a number of other children with varying degrees of need since. My practice is now more informed and I am much more confident in my own ability to support the children.
“The setting of these goals enabled me to focus on the areas in which the child needed support and to set aside time to work individually with him. I have used this in my practice with other children, identifying areas which need support and providing short one to one small group sessions to address these.
Speech, Language and Communication Needs
“The training has made me review interventions in conjunction with learning theory. This is a much more focused approach and I will be able to use it again in the future. I like to work with SMART target setting, as it helps me stay driven, so every opportunity to practise this is valuable.
“Learning about the triad of impairment and the sensory issues has made me even more aware of what steps can be taken to make the classroom environment inclusive, and what part we as teaching assistants play in ensuring that kids who have SEN are engaged and motivated in the learning environment and social environment.
Autism Spectrum Disorder