Teachers employ new perspectives

Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Melton, from the English department, explore education from the perspective of students with learning disabilities so they can better teach students of all learning types.

   The staff members at Heritage High School attended a seminar during the recent teacher in-service day, putting the challenges of having dyslexia and other learning disabilities into perspective. 

   At this seminar, the staff members participated in eight different stations with tasks including; reading independently, reading aloud, writing and auditory simulation stations. Although the tasks seem simple, there were alterations making them harder to understand and complete, such as hearing multiple sounds overlapped. The simulations were designed to portray what it is like to be in class as someone with a learning disability.

   “It really forced you to think and slow down and I think it’s very eye-opening for a lot of the staff,” says Mrs. Markus, a language arts teacher at HHS. 

   Many of the staff members said they came away from the seminar having a new view on dyslexia. The teachers realized that a student may be struggling in class not just because they weren’t trying or not paying attention, but because they have a different way of processing the information.

   “It just showed that we all have different strengths and weaknesses,” says Mrs. Cantwell, the Math Department Co-Chair at Heritage.

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