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Chapter 6

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Ernie Mac Kinnon

[ CHAPTER SIX ] SOCIAL, EMOTIONAL, AND BEHAVIOURAL CHALLENGES OVERVIEW OF SOCIAL, EMOTIONAL, AND BEHAVIOURAL CHALLENGES  Social challenges – difficulties in interrelating w/ others, in making and keeping friends, and in meeting soc demands of everyday life  Emotional challenges – feelings abt oneself tht may interfere w/ indvdl’s outlook on life and ability to learn  Behavioural challenges – problems manifested by aggressive, antisocial, and ~ beh’  Often inter(d), overlap w/ each other, or are interrelated problems  Investigations of rel’nshp btwn academic underachievement and externalizing beh’ show tht students may act out to avoid aversive academic tasks SOCIAL CHALLENGES  Social skills – skills necessary to meet basic soc demands of everyday life  Estimated tht 1/3 of students w/ LD also have problems w/ soc skills  Characteristic of students w/ autism, Asperger’s syndrome, and nonverbal disabilities  May lack sensitivity to others, have poor perception of soc situations, and suffer soc rejection  May exhibit wide range of poor soc traits (i.e. impulsiveness, low tolerance for frustration) EMOTIONAL CHALLENGES Relationship Between Learning Difficulties and Emotional Challenges  Instead of building SE, thwarted attempts produce attitude of self-derision and fail to stimulate parents’ normal responses of pride  (TF) parents may become anxious and disheartened, reac’ns tht can result in rejection/overprotection  Students may react by internalizing (i.e. conscious refusal to learn, resistance to pressure, quick discouragement) or externalizing (i.e. acting-out beh’s, fighting w/ others, defiance toward teachers) Characteristics of Emotional Challenges Depression  Signs: (1) loss of energy, (2) loss of interest in friends, (3) difficulty in concentration, (4) feelings of helplessness (occasional expressed t/ suicidal talk) Lack of Resiliency  Believe in competencies in areas other than academic work less likely to be devastated by school failure  To maintain sense of self-worth, students need support sys from teachers, parents, families, and peers - keeps failure to minimum, i↑’gs visibility of non-academic talents, skills, and competencies, and emphasizes learning goals over performance goals Anxiety  Feel events beyond their ctrl are happening to them  May cause students to miss class, to tune out, and to become disorganized BEHAVIOURAL CHALLENGES Suspension of Students  Engage in beh’s in attempt to be accepted by peers / impulsively engage in beh’ not realizing consequences  SWD have higher rate of suspension than youth w/o disabilities  If student suspended/expelled, IEP team must make manifestation determination—decide whether troublesome beh’ is part of student’s disability; if it is, services must cont’ for SWD  Aar, students fall further behind in academically, i↑’s likelihood tht they will drop out of school, and allows student to escape situation and does nothing to teach them appropriate beh’ skills Specific Functions of Behaviour  By recognizing f’n of student’s beh’, educator can change either antecedents or consequences in order to meet need of student  Purpose of beh’ #1: engage in specific beh’ to gain attention, pwr, and ctrl  Purpose of beh’ #2: engage in specific beh’ to avoid doing task b/c student fears embarrassment/failure  Purpose of beh’ #3: engage in specific beh’ for sensory reason STRATEGIES TO IMPROVE SOCIAL COMPETENCIES Improving the Student’s Self-Perception  Scrapbooks can help students put together info abt themselves Improving Nonverbal Communication 1. Pictures of faces: have students ascertain what emotions faces convey 2. Gestures: discuss meaning of various gestures 3. Videos, CDs, and story situations: help students to identify emo’al content of comm’n 4. What the voice tells: help students learn to recognize implications in human voice Social Maturity  Recognizing rights and responsibilities of self and others, making friends, cooperating w/ group, following procedures agreed on by others, making moral & ethical judgments, and gaining (i) in outside world  Strategies: 1.) anticipate consequences of soc acts—role playing, stories, discussions 2.) establish (i)—encourage students to go places alone 3.) making ethical judgments—discuss and analyze age-appropriate dilemmas 4.) solving the ―weekend problem‖ (when parents/families complain of child having nothing to do)—foster appropriate reciprocal friendships at school Cognitive Learning Strategies for Social Skills  Teach to stop and think before responding  To verbalize and rehearse soc responses  To visualize and imagine effect of their beh’  To pre-plan soc actions STRATEGIES FOR STUDENTS WITH EMOTIONAL CHALLENGES (IMPROVING SELF-ESTEEM)  Build rapport w/ student  Provide students w/ tasks at which students will be successful  Provide +ve feedback and rewards for successes  Find student’s area of interest/hobbies and try to build lessons on them  Show enthusiasm w/ student’s successes  Make learning fun and enjoyable  Encourage in circle-type activities to share feelings, learn to listen, and obsv’ others  Use creative media as therapy tm’s for promoting emotional involvement STRATEGIES FOR STUDENTS WITH BEHAVIOURAL CHALLENGES  Seating placement  Plan varied activities  Provide structure and routine  Req’ daily assignment notebook  Make sure you have student’s attention before you begin  Make directions clear and concise  Break assignments into workable chunks  Give extra time as needed  Provide feedback on completed work asap  Encourage parents and families to set up appropriate study space at home 
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