Instructional Practices for Students with Behavioral Disorders: Strategies for Reading, Writing, and Math

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Presenting a broad range of instructional programs and practices that are proven effective for students with behavioral disorders, this is the first resource of its kind for K–3 teachers and special educators. Described are clear-cut strategies for promoting mastery and fluency in early reading, writing, and math, while tailoring instruction to each student's needs. Grounded in a three-tiered response-to-intervention framework that facilitates data-based assessment, decision making, and progress monitoring, the book includes helpful examples and reproducibles. A special chapter outlines instructional management procedures for enhancing student engagement and promoting positive behavior.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Paula McMillen
This entry in the "What Works for Special-Needs Learners" series is written by three practitioner-researchers in the field who have had front-line experience in special education in addition to their extensive research work. One of the seven "core principles" upon which they base their work is that "students with BD [behavioral disorders] can learn" (p.ix); this belief requires educators to look to the instructional systems to find the problems when learning fails, not the students. The initial chapter looks at the background characteristics, demographics, and risk factors pertinent to understanding students with BD in the school setting. The second chapter details the Response to Intervention (RTI) approach upon which they base their instructional recommendations. Continual assessment—progress monitoring—is the subject of the third chapter. A detailed review of instructional programs targeted to special-needs students follows. Chapters five through seven outline the relevant theories, research, and practical approaches for teaching basic skills, mastery, and fluency in reading, math and writing. The final chapter focuses on classroom management concepts, and practices shown to be effective for students with BD. Although the emphasis is on this particular group of special-needs children, especially in the primary years, teachers in training and current practitioners will find a wealth of up-to-date research and concrete examples for interventions that will help them teach students at all ages and across a variety of learning challenges. The authors have done an outstanding job of creating a well-organized and clearly written work that will be accessible to anyone working withspecial-needs students. Each chapter is consistently organized with an overview, specific content around concepts, research and practice, followed by a cogent conclusion. This is an essential work for academic libraries supporting teacher prep programs, and would also enhance any individual or school-based professional development collections. Reviewer: Paula McMillen, Ph.D.
From the Publisher

"Nelson et al. provide a practical, concise summary of research-validated practices that teachers can use to select curriculum materials and deliver instruction. The authors focus on the needs of students with behavioral disorders, but the principles in this book apply to all students. The major feature that distinguishes this book is the response-to-intervention (RTI) framework; the authors describe how RTI can improve schools and how it can be applied to specific reading, math, writing, and classroom management practices. The main ideas in this text are well defined with clear and descriptive examples, and teachers (or teachers in training) will find suggestions they can implement directly and immediately. This easy-to-read text will help to make schools more effective learning environments. It is an important and useful contribution to the field."--Robert H. Horner, PhD, Department of Special Education, University of Oregon

"During my five years of teaching special education, working with children with behavioral disorders has involved tremendous instructional challenges (and a few too many sleepless nights). This volume provides important knowledge about how to meet these students' academic needs, along with some effective techniques to add to my teaching tool kit. I'm confident that this book is helping me build my professional competence, and I would recommend it to practicing and preservice teachers alike."--Jessica Swaye, special education teacher, G. W. Carver Primary School, Ascension Parish school district, Gonzales, Louisiana

"This is an outstanding resource for school practitioners. It is one of the few books available on responding to the academic performance and instructional needs of students with behavior problems that disrupt their learning. Nelson and his colleagues have conducted some of the very best work in our field on this topic, and this research experience certainly informs the content of the book in a most beneficial fashion. I recommend this volume to all school personnel who work with this student population."--Hill M. Walker, PhD, Professor and Director, Center on Human Development, College of Education, University of Oregon

"As a teacher educator and researcher interested in teaching my students how to put research into practice, I found this book to be extremely well organized and practical. The book helps present and future teachers understand how educational theory relates directly to what we know about teaching students with behavioral disorders. This impressive collection of hands-on teaching techniques will be useful to teachers working in a variety of instructional settings. It is exciting to see a book that truly connects research and practice!"--Jill H. Allor, EdD, Department of Literacy, Language, and Learning, Southern Methodist University

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Product Details

Meet the Author

J. Ron Nelson, PhD, is Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Center for At-Risk Children's Services at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Dr. Nelson has over 20 years' experience in the field of special education as a teacher, technical assistance provider, and professor. He has a national reputation as an effective researcher and received the 2000 Distinguished Initial Career Research Award from the Council for Exceptional Children. Dr. Nelson's research career includes over 18 million dollars in external funding and the publication of more than 100 articles, book chapters, and books that focus on research issues and on serving children at risk of school failure. He has developed a number of behavior and literacy interventions that have been recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Gregory J. Benner, PhD, is Associate Professor in the Education Program at the University of Washington-Tacoma. Dr. Benner specializes in preventive and systematic approaches to building the academic skills of students, particularly those with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD). As a secondary special education teacher, he was awarded the Apple Excellence in Education Award for improving the academic outcomes of students with EBD. As Reading Assessment Coordinator at the University of Nebraska Center for At-Risk Children's Services, Dr. Benner implemented effective systems for improving the responsiveness of students with EBD to scientifically based instruction. In 2002, he was awarded the Wesley Becker Award for Outstanding Research from the Association for Direct Instruction. Dr. Benner has worked on over 90 presentations and publications that reflect his ability to disseminate research findings and best practices to the field.

Paul Mooney, PhD, is Assistant Professor in the Special Education Programs at Louisiana State University. Dr. Mooney's teaching and research interests are presently directed at assessment- and intervention-related issues for children and youth at risk for or verified with academic and behavioral disabilities. Recent publications have been aimed at increasing the relationship between general outcomes assessment and progress monitoring in reading intervention at the elementary and secondary school levels. With his special education colleagues, Dr. Mooney has also devoted time to increasing both the number and quality of special education practitioners. Prior to completing his doctoral study at the University of Nebraska, Dr. Mooney worked as a school psychologist and newspaper reporter.

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Table of Contents

Behavioral, Demographic, and Functional Characteristics of Students with Behavioral Disorders     1
Behavioral Characteristics     2
Demographic Characteristics     6
Functional Characteristics     7
Conclusions     10
Response to Intervention and Fundamental Instructional Practices     12
Response to Intervention     13
Fundamental Instructional Principles     21
Conclusions     25
Assessment for Effective Instruction     28
Assessment for Eligibility Determination and Continuation     29
Rationale for Progress Monitoring     30
Progress Monitoring of Academic Skills     33
Example of Progress Monitoring     50
Other Considerations in Data Collection for Students with BD     52
Conclusions     53
Design and Delivery Features of Commercially Available Early Reading, Written Language, and Mathematics Direct Instruction Programs     54
Design Steps and Key Features of Direct Instruction Programs     57
Delivery Features of Direct Instruction Programs     64
Commercially Available Direct Instruction Programs     66
Conclusions     71
Early Reading Instruction     73
Reading Research forStudents with BD     74
Early Reading Theory and Practice     75
Mastery Instruction     77
Fluency Instruction     88
Other Considerations in Planning and Delivering Reading Instruction for Students with BD     97
Conclusions     99
Early Math Instruction     100
Math Research for Students with BD     101
Early Math Theory and Practice     102
Mastery Instruction     110
Fluency Instruction     118
Other Considerations in Planning and Delivering Mathematics Instruction for Students with BD     125
Conclusions     125
Early Writing Instruction     127
Writing Research for Students with BD     129
Effective Writing Models and Practice     129
Mastery Instruction     131
Fluency Instruction     140
Other Considerations in Planning and Delivering Writing Instruction for Students with BD     141
Conclusions     143
Management of Instructional Situations     145
Placement of Students with BD during Instructional Situations     146
Teacher Awareness Skills     146
Interpersonal Interaction Skills     150
Teacher Self-Control Skills      153
Self-Management Procedures     154
Teacher-Student Learning Game     159
Conclusions     168
References     171
Index     183
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