Boston University (Bachelor Social Work)
Hebrew College (Master's)
Wheelock College, Boston (Other)
I am a special educator with twenty-five years experience as a special needs teacher/tutor for children with moderate to severe learning disabilities. I have Certification in the Orton Gillingham method- Certificate in Therapeutic Techniques for the treatment of Dyslexia and Supervised Practice for Specific Reading Disabilities. I have a Certificate of Advanced graduate Study in Language and Literacy. I am presently working on my Doctorate in Education. I also have a Master's in Judaic studies with a Concentration in Special needs. I have taught students with special needs for their Bar/Bat- Mitzvah as well being the Special Educator for the other Hebrew school grades as well.
I have worked with many different kinds of special needs populations in my career thus far. I have been in the field of disabilities for over 30 years. How I view what I do is through the following quote: "Words are very powerful. They are like the paint an artist uses to express their impressions of the world around them. We use words in the same way. With words we paint the limits and possibilities of our reality. Perhaps the language we use is the most telling example of how we perceive the value of people with disabilities in our society." (Carl Astor, 2005, p. 20) But, to ensure every student has access to an effective general and Jewish education, the teachers or the tutor must be able to address multiple learning styles within a variety of educational contexts. I hope that I can continue to teach and help those with special needs reach to their highest potential and goals.
Astor, C. (2005). Who Makes people Different: Jewish Perspectives on People with Disabilities. International Youth Commission United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism:
New York, NY. I am a special educator with twenty-five years experience as a special needs teacher/tutor for children with moderate to severe learning disabilities. I have Certification in the Orton Gillingham method-
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I've had students with ADD/ADHD either in the classroom, or in tutoring situations for the past 25 years. They all have had some issues with language or reading. Therefore, because I have a certificate in advanced graduate study in language and literacy I was able to spot the issues of language and reading due to inattention that can come hand in hand with ADD/ADHD. Something I learned and experienced within my teaching of students with ADD/ADHD, that it often has other coexisting diagnoses with it. These students often have difficulties with focusing and sustaining attention. They also may exhibit impulsivity, and in some cases hyperactivity. One must have and understanding when planning for teaching that one size does not fit all. One must use modifications when necessary such as breaking the assignment down, reduce distraction, and incorporate the teaching of time management. One of the best ways that I have found is to use a multisensory approach, because the use of activity based learning often helps the student become engaged in learning.
I have taught Special needs Hebrew Sunday school classes with the population of children and preteens with Aspergers. I have taught them for their coming of age ceremony in the Jewish Faith which is called Bar/ Bat Mitzvah. I have done this kind of work for 25 years. I have also taught this population in general studies in language and literacy for 12 of those years. I have a Certificate in Advanced Graduate Study in Language and Literacy and within this I took courses in Language Acquisition and Assessment, as well as I have a Master's in Judaic Studies and Special Needs and use a multisensory approach to teach according to the students needs. I know from my teaching and observing experience there is marked impairment in social and communication skills. There is difficulty with social relationships, poor coordination, poor concentration, and a restricted range of interests. These students usually have normal intelligence and adequate language skills in the areas of vocabulary and grammar. Aspergers is usually later onset or is recognized later. Where the difficulty lies is, in the area of understanding subtleties used in conversation such as irony, and humor. Aspergers is sometimes referred to as "High Functioning Autism."
I first learned about Autism in my psychology books. Then I had the opportunity to teach a class of developmentally delayed children in a Hebrew Sunday school class. The population was mostly of Children on the Autism Spectrum one of who only responded to the Hebrew language, because it was his first language.
I am certified in the Orton Gillingham method which includes a certificate of Education in therapeutic techniques for the treatment of Dyslexia and Supervised practice for Specific Reading Disability. This is a structured multisensory approach to teaching language to these types of students. It uses the auditory, visual, and kinesthetic senses in order for language to be processed.
I just spent last school year assistant teaching in an ESL/ESOL class, and am now studying ESL/ESOL at the professional development level. I am also tutoring in another Language and Literacy, ESL/ESOL program as well as working with Disabilities (i.e. Language based Disabilities.). I am able to dectect if there are any underlying issues besides second language learning, because of my background in Disabilities. I will be covering for the instructor an ESL/ESOL conversation class in a few weeks at the Local Library.
I have taught Hebrew and Judaic studies for twenty-five years both as a tutor and classroom teacher. I have taught students with special needs all along the way for either learning the language or for their Bar/ Bat Mitzvah. I have even used something similar to the Orton Gillingham method to teach the mechanics and reading of the Hebrew language.
I am certified in the Orton-Gillingham Method as as well as have a certificate in advanced graduate study in language and literacy which incorporates the teaching of Phonics. It has to be taught in a structured multisensory way in order for the child to process it. It is also a part of the language decoding process. It is part of the foundation of Reading. One theory states that parts of words (phoneme/grapheme) relationship or explicit phonics should be taught first. But on the other hand there is teaching the whole word ("language") approach or implicit phonics that is inferential and taught through reading literature. According to a position paper written by the Orton Dyslexia Society in 1997, children benefit from instruction in explicit phonics method. Phonemes then graphemes leading to spelling patterns. Practice in this area is essential through using a multisensory approach meaning the use of the auditory, kinesthetic, and visual senses.
I have worked within the field of disabilities for 30 years or more. I have always believed in using a multisensory approach to teaching to the individual's level of capability. I must be able to help the student reach his/her highest potential.