Ryan entered first grade with boundless hope and a keen desire to read. Unfortunately, an undiagnosed vision problem interfered with his reading, and fine motor deficits made writing difficult. In most ways, Ryan was at least equal to his peers: physically active, imaginative, and highly intelligent. Socially, however, Ryan was hampered by spending time in the special education classroom. Because he had been signaled out and because he could not do some of the things his classmates could do, he was ignored, even bullied, by some of them.
When he finally got the right treatment, though, most of his problems vanished. His physically and social skills advanced to meet his cognitive abilities. He became more engaged in his schoolwork and more open to friendships. Ryan’s story had a happy ending. Please discuss how you, as an educator, would have dealt with Ryan’s difficulty in reading and writing. What would you do to help integrate him into class and help him make friends with classmates?
In this situation, it is very important to know that as Ryan’s educator, it is my job as an advocate, to make sure Ryan has every opportunity to achieve his goals and without offering proper assistance, education could be a difficult process for him.
Even though Ryan’s visual impairment is not necessarily considered as a learning disability because as the textbook stated: “to be classified as a learning disability, the learning problem is not primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities” (Santrock, 2011), it is still as important for him to receive support in school for him to become a responsible and independent adult.
As an educator, it is important to construct an individualized education plan (IEP) for Ryan, which is a plan that will be tailored specifically to Ryan’s needs only, and should be placed in a least restrictive environment.
It is important for me, as an educator, to place Ryan in a position in the classroom where he has as much access to the blackboard as possible, considering his vision problem. It would also be beneficial for me to make the tasks as concrete as possible because it would probably be difficult for him to visualize.