Effective Pedagogical Practices in Inclusive Classrooms for Students With Disabilities

Effective Pedagogical Practices in Inclusive Classrooms for Students With Disabilities

Rashmi Khazanchi, Pankaj Khazanchi
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1431-3.ch003
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Abstract

Inclusive education means educating students with special needs in an age-appropriate general education setting where students receive high-quality, standard-based instructions, interventions, and support that enable them to experience success in the general education classroom. Effective pedagogical practices involve the collaboration of both special education teacher and general education teacher to identify and implement effective teaching practices which enhance student engagement and promote higher-order thinking skills. Special education teacher supports the general education teacher in adapting curriculum and teaching methods, modifying assessments, and providing accommodations to students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms. Effective pedagogical practices are affected by teacher's belief; students' disabilities; and their roles and responsibilities towards the students with disabilities. This chapter examines previous researches and studies that investigate effective pedagogical practices in inclusive classrooms for students with disabilities.
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Introduction

Today’s classrooms are becoming more diverse. Inclusive pedagogy incorporates dynamic teaching practices, varied means of assessment, multiformat means of content delivery, and the goal of promoting overall students’ success. Inclusive pedagogical practices promote the teaching of all students in classroom environments that foster a productive climate and encourage students’ growth. Inclusive teaching practices describes teaching strategies that consider needs of diverse learners with focus of learning of all students. Inclusive classroom settings have a diverse population of students including students with disabilities, which makes inclusive education as a complex teaching construct.

Teachers need to recognize and value differences between their students and must commit to engage students by creating a positive learning environment. Inclusive practices involve teaching students with disabilities with general education students, thus posing a challenge for both students and teachers. Including students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms benefits all the students when they are exposed to evidence-based effective pedagogical practices (Ainscow, Goldrick, & West, 2012). Students with disabilities show numerous benefits when included in the mainstream classroom as they display fewer behavior problems, decreased rate of inappropriate behavior, improved skill acquisition, generalization, enhanced social skills, a greater achievement on their IEP and transition goals, and positive academic learning outcome (Hochman, Carter, Bottema-Beutel, Harvey, & Gustafson, 2015; McMahon, Keys, Berardi, Crouch, & Coker, 2016).

Students without disabilities when educated with students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms learn to respect all, involve in meaningful friendship and social inclusion, learn mastery of concept by teaching their peers with disabilities which in turn improve their academic achievement. For inclusive education to be more effective, teachers need knowledge and training in pedagogical practices. Inclusive education is based on several practices including growth mindset, encouraging transparency, promoting flexibility, examining authority, and self-reflection. Flexible groupings such as whole grouping, paired grouping, station/ centers teaching, and small groupings helps teachers create classroom environment according to the learning needs of students with disabilities. In an inclusive classroom setting, all students need to be treated equally, have access to learning, and are welcomed and valued as a part of the learning community. Teachers lack training in inclusive practices and strategies. This chapter examines investigates effective pedagogical practices in inclusive classrooms for students with disabilities. The implications of these findings will provide effective pedagogical practices to use in contemporary inclusive classrooms by K-12 classroom teachers.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Effective Pedagogical Practices: Quality teaching methods that facilitate learning in the inclusive classroom for all students.

Standard Based Instructions: Refers to standardized learning targets and instructional systems related to assessment, curriculum, and instructions.

Higher Order Thinking Skills: Includes critical thinking skills, which go beyond basic observations, in the area of knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation.

Student with Disability: A student with: “mental retardation, hearing impairments (including deafness), speech or language impairments, visual impairments (including blindness), serious emotional disturbance, orthopedic impairments, autism, traumatic brain injury, other health impairments, or specific learning disabilities; and who need special education and related services (IDEA, 2004 AU18: The in-text citation "IDEA, 2004" is not in the reference list. Please correct the citation, add the reference to the list, or delete the citation. ).

Inclusive Education: Educating a child with special needs in the mainstream classroom by providing the required support to ensure effective education ( UNESCO, 2001 ).

Student Engagement: The degree of attention, interest, motivation that students show when they are participating in classroom activities.

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