Date
24 February 2019

Support participation and build confidence

Suggestion for implementing the strategy ‘Helpful classroom strategies years 9-13’

Give lots of positive feedback

Give lots of positive feedback

Social confidence and a positive sense of self are important aspects of adolescence.

Recognise and act on opportunties to provide positive feedback.

Encourage sustained participation

Encourage sustained participation

Discuss with students what will support their participation and motivation.

Build these suggestions into your teaching practice.

  • Establish clear classroom routines.
  • Teach strategies to help students them when they get stuck.
  • Break work into short manageable chunks.
  • Give positive, timely feedback.
  • Brief students about changes to routine.
  • When changing classroom layout, provide a plan of new layout and when it will happen.
  • Provide easy access to quiet spaces for working or winding down.
  • Schedule brain breaks.
  • Notice avoidance tactics or increasing anxiety, implement supports quickly.
  • Offer leadership opportunities based on knowledge of student's expertise and interests.
  • Connect learning to student's interests.
  • Foster tuakana-teina relationships where students support each other.

Survey students about preferences

Survey students about preferences

Ask students what supports their learning and what gets in the way.

I personally do a survey at the beginning of every class, every semester ... to get an idea of who is in the classroom to begin with and what they would benefit, or what they want to see in the class, what would work [and not work] for them.

Nancy Searcy

Support students to tell their story

Support students to tell their story

Support students with Down syndrome to tell their story to others. 

Be guided by the student and their whānau.

Impact of effective support

Impact of effective support

Katrina from Onslow College describes how her school has supported to achieve her goals.

Useful resources

Useful resources

Website

Positive steps for social inclusion

Read time: 8 min

Publisher: National Down Syndrome Society

Visit website

Website

Secondary education support pack

Publisher: Down's Syndrome Association

Visit website

Next steps

More suggestions for implementing the strategy “Helpful classroom strategies years 9-13”:

Return to the guide “Down syndrome and learning”

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