Region 13’s Communication / AAC Pathways!

ESC Region 13’s Communication/AAC Pathways:
Take your skills to the next level!

ESC Region 13 is thrilled to present two, tailored pathways to your Communication and AAC learning – PPCD Pathway and Life Skills Pathway! All of the workshops below are open to everyone, but be sure to look closely at the pathway and target audience to make sure you find just what you need.

Region 13 has options that are *just* right for you and your team!


Partner-Augmented Input:

Modeling AAC in the Classroom

Dr. Jill Senner, CCC/SLP & Matthew Baud, CCC/SLP

LEVEL: Intermediate

PATHWAY: PPCD and Life Skills

AUDIENCE: SLPs, Teachers, and any/all other team members who serve students with complex communication needs

DATE: November 30, 2018 (offered one time only)

DESCRIPTION: We’ve been told that we need to model AAC – come to learn how to model AAC! This program will take staff through portions of steps one through five of an evidence-­‐based, 8-­‐step instructional model for teaching partner-­‐augmented input. Staff will complete commitment to the instructional program, strategy description, videotaped strategy demonstration, verbal practice of the strategy steps, and controlled practice. Staff should have a communication board, app, device, or emulation software available for participation in the interactive portions of the program.

REGISTER TODAY! Course #FA1840279


Teaching Students Who Can’t Talk:

Supporting Significant Communication

Impairments in the Classroom

Katie Adams, CCC/SLP

LEVEL: Beginner

PATHWAY: PPCD and Life Skills

AUDIENCE: Teachers and ParaEducators

DATE: January 31, 2019 (offered multiple times per year)

DESCRIPTION: As educators, we strive to connect with our students. But, what do we do if our students are not able to speak? How do we connect with them and provide instruction that can help them understand and express themselves? This beginner level course for educators will cover the foundational elements needed to guide you in assessing the communication skills of your students and implementing class wide strategies to help complex communication needs.

REGISTRATION COMING SOON!


AAC Foundations Team Training

Nichole Kertis, OT & Lisa Rukovena, CCC/SLP

LEVEL: Intermediate

PATHWAY: PPCD and Life Skills

AUDIENCE: SLPs, Teachers, and any/all other team members who serve students with complex communication needs

DATE: Feb 20 & 21, 2019 (offered multiple times per year)

DESCRIPTION: This workshop series is designed for professionals (especially TEAMS!) working with students with complex communication needs (CCN) who need Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) systems.  We will demystify AAC and empower communication partners with a foundation so that no matter which specific app, device, training or technique presents itself, teams feel prepared. Teams will receive poster- and student-sized core communication boards for the classroom!

REGISTRATION COMING SOON!


TELL ME: AAC in the PreSchool Classroom

Dr. Carole Zangari, CCC/SLP & Lori Wise

LEVEL: Intermediate

PATHWAY: PPCD 

AUDIENCE: SLPs and Teachers

DATE: March 7 & 8, 2019 (offered one time only)

DESCRIPTION: This workshop provides an overview of an early childhood classroom designed to empower teachers, paraprofessionals, therapists, and families to support the use core vocabulary in AAC systems. Participants will learn about the key elements of the TELL ME program (Zangari & Wise, 2017) and see how core language is addressed in shared reading and writing lessons, classroom routines, and typical play/learning activities.

REGISTRATION COMING SOON!


Literacy for Students with

Significant Cognitive Disabilities

Jennifer Russel & Nichole Kertis, OT

LEVEL: Intermediate

PATHWAY: Life Skills 

AUDIENCE: SLPs and Teachers

DATE: TBD 2019 (offered multiple times per year)

DESCRIPTION: Learn how to support interaction and teach communication as students engage in academic instruction across the school day. Teams will receive materials and poster-sized core communication boards.

REGISTRATION COMING SOON!


Bonus!

Participants who have attended “AAC Foundations Team Training” in the past are eligible to attend AAC Pathway workshops at a reduced rate! Reach out to each workshop’s contact listed in E-Campus for more information!

 

 

Updates for 2018-2019 Accessibility Features

Where can you find the updated Accessibility Features for the upcoming STAAR?

To get the most up to date information concerning STAAR testing and the Accessibility features, visit the new District and Campus Coordinator Resource online at http://txetests.com/dccr.

What is accessibility?

Ensuring that each student can interact appropriately with the content, presentation, and response mode of the test.

Assessments should allow all test takers to demonstrate their knowledge of the content being tested without the format of the assessment, non-tested language, or the type of response needed to answer the questions being barriers.

In order to meet this goal, various features and supports are made available on paper and online tests to students who use the same or similar supports during classroom instruction.

Accessibility Features

The Accessibility features can be found in the District and Campus Coordinator Resources website.

  • Available to any student who regularly benefits from the use of these procedures or materials during instruction
  • No need to document use of Accessibility Features in student paperwork, the answer document, or in the Texas Assessment Management System.
  • A student may need to complete the test in a separate setting in order to eliminate distractions to other students and to ensure that the security and confidentiality of the test is maintained.
  • A student cannot be required to use them during testing.
  • Coordinators are responsible for ensuring that test administrators understand the proper implementation of these procedures and use of these materials.

Typing a student’s response to the writing prompt into the online test for any grade 4 student who is taking STAAR writing online and cannot type proficiently has been added as an Accessibility Feature.

Eligibility for Basic Transcribing does NOT need to be determined for 4th grade students taking the STAAR writing online test and using this feature; however, the procedures for Basic Transcribing MUST be adhered to.

Stay tuned to What’s So Special… for the following blog posts:

  • Updates for 2018-2019 Designated Supports
  • New Online Features for 2019 STAAR

Have a question? Contact the Special Education Instructional Support Team at hello@acentral.education.

Register today for To Drill or Not to Drill? Math Fact Strategy Instruction!

Do your students struggle to learn math facts? In this workshop you will learn effective and efficient strategies for students to use in order to build automaticity of the addition and subtraction and multiplication and division facts. Teaching of strategies to recall basic facts builds flexible thinking in a student. Students with flexible thinking are able to see a number in several forms and use the knowledge and skills they already possess to find a solution for an unknown fact. This workshop will also provide ideas for implementation of strategy instruction, progress monitoring tips, and engaging math practice ideas to build fluency.

All attendees will receive a set of the FACTastic Math Strategy System, a comprehensive program for teaching basic math facts through strategy-based instruction. Day 1 attendees will receive the FACTastic Math Strategy System for addition/subtraction and Day 2 attendees will receive the FACTastic Math Strategy System for multiplication/division. Check out this video to learn more about the FACTastic Math Strategy System.

FACTastic helps students build a solid mathematical foundation that is critical for their success. In this video, the teacher uses FACTastic cards to get students to think differently about multiplying and dividing with six. Check it out!

Register today!

Date: November 12 & 13, 2018

Time: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Price: $90.00/day

Go to Ecampus and search for the following course numbers.

  • Day 1, November 12, Addition and Subtraction, #FA1840432
  • Day 2, November 13, Multiplication and Division, #FA1840433

For more information contact Gretchen Kehrberg, gretchen.kehrberg@esc13.txed.net.

Attention Teachers of Students with Significant Disabilities! Register Today for These Great Workshops in October!

Are you a teacher of students with significant disabilities? Then you’ll want to check out these October workshops at Region 13!

October 10th

Teaching Students Who Can’t Talk: Supporting Significant Communication Impairments in the Classroom (FA1839892)

This workshop is designed to help teachers support the communication and instructional needs of students with severe communication impairments. Participants will learn about communication development and best practices for teaching students with complex communication needs.

October 16th and 17th

 Life Skills Fundamentals (FA1839396)

In this 2 day training, participants will learn the fundamental skills and strategies necessary to successfully instruct and engage students with significant cognitive disabilities. The training will cover classroom organization, routines, evidence-based practices, challenging behavior, data collection and planning, and much more.  Teachers will create materials that will be ready to use in their classrooms immediately!

October 23rd

Creating Successful Teams for Teachers and Paraeducators (FA1839992Participants will examine strategies and skills for promoting effective communication, collaboration, and team building. Workshop topics will include ways to improve teamwork, working relationships, communication, leadership, and role clarification. Participants will also learn strategies to support effective problem solving and decision making. Teachers and paraeducators are encouraged, but not required, to attend as a team.

Register today in ecampus! For questions, please contact:

jennifer.russell@esc13.txed.net

 

Register today for Power of Inclusion!

Including students with disabilities in the general education classroom is both a challenge and an opportunity. Educators need to collaborate to successfully meet the needs of diverse learners.

Power of Inclusion is a one-day workshop that offers general educators, special educators, and paraprofessionals an opportunity to develop relationships and expand their understanding of how to provide access to the general education curriculum for all students.

Topics covered include co-teaching approaches, paraprofessional support, specially designed instruction, Universal Design for Learning, roles and responsibilities, collaboration, and planning.

Date: October 23, 2018

Time: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Price: $45.00

Register for Power of Inclusion in Ecampus by using course number FA1839170.

For more information contact Gretchen Kehrberg, gretchen.kehrberg@esc13.txed.net.

Are you a special education instructional leader?

Join us for the Special Education Instructional Network – SPIN – to connect and learn with other special educators in Region 13.

SPIN meets four times during each school year. Our first 2018-2019 meeting is on Wednesday, September 12, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM.

SPIN meetings are designed for special education instructional leaders to receive updates and resources and to share ideas, district news, and questions with each other.  This year, our meetings will include a book study, UDL Now! A Teacher’s Guide to Applying Universal Design for Learning in Today’s Classrooms, by Dr. Katie Novak.  In addition, Region 13 Specialists will join us to provide behavior guidance and assistive technology information.

You can register for SPIN meetings for FREE in Ecampus by using course number FA1839043.

For more information, contact Kim West, kim.west@esc13.txed.net

TEA announces the 2018-2019 STAAR Interim Assessment Tool

On August 6, 2018 the Texas Education Agency (TEA) announced the availability of the STAAR Interim Assessments.

What are the STAAR Interim Assessments?

These are free, optional, online interim assessments that align to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). The interim assessments provide actionable data to help educators improve instruction as well as help predict student performance on the STAAR.

When will the STAAR Interim Assessments be available?

TEA is launching the full interim assessment tool during the 2018–2019 school year. The assessment tool will be available from the beginning of the school year through the spring.

How do I access the STAAR Interim Assessments?

No application or TEA confirmation is required to use the assessment tool; districts and charter schools just need to register students in the STAAR Assessment Management System. Registration opens August 13, 2018.

What are some key features of the STAAR Interim Assessments?

  • Two different assessment administration opportunities are available, and districts can choose when to schedule these administrations. The first assessment opportunity will be available August 31, 2018.
  • Interim assessments are available through the STAAR Online Testing Platform for:
    • grades 3–8 mathematics
    • grades 3–8 reading
    • Algebra I, English I, English II
    • Spanish grades 3–5 mathematics
    • Spanish grades 3–5 reading
  • Embedded supports have been expanded to include content and language supports, as well as text-to-speech.
  • Results from the interim assessments will be reported in the STAAR Assessment Management System and have been enhanced to include a new online reporting suite. The reporting suite contains district-level, campus-level, and student-level reports. Reports at the student level will include:
    • the student’s response to each test question
    • the TEKS student expectation for each test question
    • a pop-up window that shows the test question
    • data files and percentages representing the statistical probability of achieving “Approaches”, “Meets” and “Masters” grade level expectations on STAAR

Is there a particular value for special education teachers?

Yes! Not only do the interim assessments provide valuable data, they also help teachers determine what designated supports might be beneficial to students so they can integrate the supports into their classroom instruction. In addition, the interim assessments provide a meaningful way for students to practice with the STAAR Online features. Success on the interim assessments can help teachers and administrators make appropriate testing decisions for students.

How can I learn more about the STAAR Interim Assessments?

Over the next few weeks, ETS will be hosting a series of webinar training opportunities for the interim assessments. Recorded versions of the webinars will be posted for educators who are not able to participate. More information about the upcoming webinars and the STAAR Interim Assessments can be found on TEA’s website at Interim Assessments.

For answers to more questions read the Interim Assessment FAQ.

If you have questions about the interim assessments, contact the TEA Student Assessment Division at (512) 463-9536 or studentassessment@tea.texas.gov.

Attention Science Teachers!

 

 

 

 

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) released the revised test blueprints and assessed curriculum documents for science on May 22, 2018. They are posted to the TEA STAAR Science Resources webpage and include documents for Grade 5 science, Grade 5 Spanish science, Grade 8 science, and Biology.

STAAR Science Resources Webpage: https://tea.texas.gov/student.assessment/staar/science/

How can I use these documents?

Together the blueprints and assessed curriculum documents provide invaluable information for science teachers. Knowing the number of total test items, reporting category totals, and the percentage of readiness standard questions versus supporting standard questions can help focus planning so you make the most of your instructional time. The documents inform science teachers not only in the testing grades, but can guide vertical alignment planning efforts across grade levels.

TEST BLUEPRINTS

 

 

 

 

 

The blueprints contain information about the STAAR tests including:

  • Total number of questions on the test
  • Number of questions from each reporting category
  • Breakdown for each category of readiness and supporting standards
  • A reminder that at least 40% of the test questions are dual coded. A dual coded question incorporates scientific investigation and reasoning skills standards along with content standards. These scientific investigation and reasoning skills standards are the process standards that focus on conducting investigations, safe lab practices, critical thinking, and using scientific tools. An example of a scientific investigation and reasoning skills standard from biology is B.3 – the student uses critical thinking, scientific reasoning, and problem solving to make informed decisions within and outside the classroom.

ASSESSED CURRICULUM DOCUMENTS

The assessed curriculum documents list all tested TEKS eligible for testing. For the 5th and 8th grade tests the assessed curriculum documents also indicate which lower grade supporting standards are associated with the grade level standards. For example, in 5th grade Reporting Category 3 (Earth and Space) contains TEKS 5.7 and 5.8 as well as 4.7, 4.8, 3.7, and 3.8. The assessed curriculum documents also identify which of the TEKS are readiness standards and which are supporting standards.

What’s the difference between readiness and supporting standards?

Readiness Standards

(60-65% of questions)

Supporting Standards

(35-40% of questions)

• emphasize the integration and application of major scientific concepts

are essential for success in the current grade or course

• are important for preparedness for the next grade or course

• support college and career readiness

• necessitate in-depth instruction

• address significant content and concepts

• focus on content that supports fundamental scientific principles

• introduced in the current grade or course but may be emphasized in a subsequent year

• reinforced in the current grade or course but may be emphasized in a previous year

• play a role in preparing students for the next grade or course but not a central role

• address more narrowly defined content and concepts

 

Is there a particular value for special education teachers?

Yes! Not only can these resources guide planning for teaching and student support in any classroom setting, but they can also inform ARD committee members writing science goals. When analyzing the needs of the individual student in science, consider content standards AND process standards and remember the balance of readiness and supporting standards.

What should I do with this information now?

In addition to helping you plan for the 18-19 school year, these documents can help determine your summer professional development. Is there a specific reporting category you want to focus on? Do you need more training regarding the scientific investigation and reasoning skills standards?

For more information about Region 13 science resources and workshops, contact Amanda Betz, 512-919-5373, amanda.betz@esc13.txed.net.

If you have questions about the blueprints and assessed curriculum documents, contact the TEA Science Team, Curriculum Standards and Student Support Division, (512) 463-9581.

Hearing Loss, Hearing Aids, No Problem!

Help get your General Education teachers and staff ready to work with students who have a hearing loss.

Hearing Loss, Hearing Aids, No Problem will address the needs of children in the general education setting who have a hearing loss and utilize hearing aids, cochlear implants, or bone anchored hearing systems.

The goal of this workshop is to prepare general education teachers and staff to understand the impact of hearing loss on the acquisition of language and learning. We will discuss effective classroom strategies, accommodations, assistive technology and interpreter use.

June 15, 2018 Workshop SU1839296 Register now!

Hearing Loss, Hearing Aids, No Problem!

Announcing the Region 13 Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Professional Learning Community (PLC)!

 

Are you looking for a way to transform your teaching and your students’ learning?

Submit your application to join the Region 13 Universal Design for Learning Professional Learning Community!  This PLC is designed to provide cohort members with an understanding of the UDL framework, knowledge and resources to support UDL implementation, and individualized learning opportunities to address campus needs.

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework for creating an approach to your instruction based on principles that allow all students to have access to the general education curriculum. Using a proactive approach to remove learning barriers by considering the natural variability of how students learn, UDL provides a blueprint for creating instructional goals, methods, materials and assessments to help optimize learning.

In addition, knowledge and implementation of UDL supports ESSA’s endorsement of UDL, enhances our connections to the student-centered focus of our appraisal systems, and provides a way to plan for social and emotional variability.

The UDL PLC application process is simple!  Just complete pages 3 and 4 of the application and submit it electronically by 5:00 PM on June 15, 2018.  To submit the application or for more information contact Kim West at kim.west@esc13.txed.net or 512-919-5314.