Author Topic: SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS  (Read 3391 times)

Offline Brandi Ross

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SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« on: December 21, 2003, 03:09:08 AM »
As I was writing on another thread, I thought about special needs students.  I have several questions for this one...

1.  Do you teach a special need student differently? for example, downs syndrome or autism, etc.

2.  Would you have different requirements for belt promotion and how would you explain to other students your reasoning?

3.  Are they included as part of the regular class or are they given special considerations and times?

4.  Do you teach only basics?  Or is each case different based on the handicap of the student.  

5.  Do hearing impaired individuals have an interpretor or would you be willing to learn to sign to them?

6.  Do you prepare a new curriculum or do you present things in seminar format?  Are classes the same length are regular?

Right now, I cannot think of anymore questions, but I think you can see what I am getting at.  My friend is the area director for special olympics and has several athletes that would like to get involved with martial arts.  I would love to help them learn and sigung is interest, but I don't know which way to go with this.  Basically, this would end up being my program when I obtain my black belt.  Sigung will supervise, but I would be doing the instructing.  He would help with promotions and all other details as well.  Any thoughts on this would be great.

Aloha,
brandi 8) ??? ::)
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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2003, 10:54:45 AM »
I have a daughter who has mosiac turners along with triple X.  She is on growth hormones and is doing well in that area.  Mentally she is behind my 3 year old and she is now 6.  She can not follow the simplest instructions now.  If it doesnt get better I could not imagine teaching her martial arts of any kind.  Another area is her temper.  What she would pick up could become dangerous for herself and others.  I have seen her body slam my 8 year old boy when she was 5.  I use her as an example because I've seen adults act as she does.  I would look into why they are special very closely before accepting as a student.
« Last Edit: December 21, 2003, 11:04:28 AM by Todd »

Offline guarded

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2003, 04:00:06 PM »
At our school we have several handicapped people of different levels.  Every saturday morning after the noon class there is a special class just for the handicapped and mentally disabled.  They learn anything from a simple block to a reverse punch.  Lots of group stuff though.  Put them in a tight circle and keep em busy.  A few of the more capable and "nondisruptive" students come to normal classes even.  A male with downs got his brown belt along with me.  I could demonstrate far more technique and many more tricks and forms but that wasn't what he was being judged on.  He had put in the time and deserved that belt as much as I did.  It can be a lot of work but these people love to learn.  Good luck.
Jerry Guard
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Offline sifu_adam

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2003, 12:26:30 AM »
I have just enrolled a student in my program that has downs. I met with the parents prior and discussed the goals and what I could offer. She is very athletic depsite her condition. She plays Ice Hockey and Basketball already. She is currently only going to attend my Saturday morning class for beginner kids.

I got another bonus with my new student. I recently started to learn to speak and write Mandarin in my desire to learn new languages. My new student uses some sign language with her family due to hearing problems. She can hear ok but speaking is sometimes a problem so she and her family learned sign to help with the situation. The bonus I get is the "hands" on training I will get each class with this student learning to use sign to help communicate.

I would like to hear how others especially those with lots of experience in this area handle classes, promotions, and more. I am fortunate that the student I have is already very athletic and has an awesome attitude for being in martial arts classes.


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Offline D-Man

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2003, 05:42:56 AM »
At the moment we have one 21 year old with downs syndrome, one 19 year old in a wheel chair, one blind and mostly deaf 14 year old, and sense last week, an adult with no use of his right arm (he did one handed push ups first class!) enrolled at my school.  I honestly don't know what the best way to teach them is, but I can tell you what we've done.

Answers to your questions:

1) Yes, we teach them differently.  They all require more attention from the advanced students.  With slow students, we take it slow.  With physically handicap students, we change drills and sets and forms to accomidate their physical differences.

2) Yes, we have different belt requirements fro these students.  I don't think that there has ever been a need to explain to other students, they are very understanding.

3) All of the students I just mentioned are now included in the regular class.  The blind and deaf student started out in private classes, but is doing just fine with the rest of us now and has improved tremendously with the intergration.  We assign one or a few advanced students to guide him and work with him each class.

4) We teach them as much as they can handle, which is obviously less then the other students.

5) Hmmm.  That's a tough question.  The deaf student has cocliar (sp?) ear implants and has whoever is assisting him repeat instructions into his right ear.  I think it would be great for someone to learn sign for a student, but I think it would be easiest to show without sign, or assign a private class to the individual.  For that much extra work though, there would probably be some sort of compensation from the student which is hard for a lot of people to come by.

6) Basically the same curriculim with accomidations and modifications where need be is used.

I would recomend considering a few things for the benifit of these students, and the ones helping them.  Do not make them feel like a burden or chore.  They know that they are different, and it is something that they can automatically be very self-conscious about (even though it is not reality).  Make sure that every advanced student knows that these students are picked FIRST in drills and sparring, that is a huge responcibility.  Also, it is not just self deffense they are working on in class, it goes much deeper.  

I personally have a tremendous amount of respect for these individuals, especially the ones with physical disabillities.  It takes an incredible amount of humility and drive to participate and overcome tough situations.  They are extremely inspirational.  I look at them and then take a look at my life, and thank God for all he has blessed me with.  I don't know if I could do what they do if I was in the same situations.  

Bryce, Sam, Von, Jason, if you're out there you are an inspiration to us all, and you are stronger people than I.  Thanks for giving me the oppertunity to work out with you.


Offline Mike Nagano

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2003, 12:15:56 AM »
Great question, Brandi.  I have taught special education for many years (learning handicap, not physical), but I have taken many classes in Adapted Physical Education.  Just to answer your quesion (#1) in a slightly different way, I'd suggest asking a specialist in the field of Adapted Physical Education, Occupational Theraphy, or Physical Therapy.  Without going into specifics (since I really don't have the answers), there are some modifications that would have to be made due to each individual's particular condition.  For example, I seem to remember a caution one of my professors made about having children with Down's Syndrome doing rolls (of course, I could be way off, since my memory stinks).  But it's an angle worth pursuing just to be safe.

Mike Nagano
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Offline Serene

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2003, 10:19:55 PM »
I tip my hat to all of you that teach those w/special needs.  You and your students are a great inspiration.

I commend all of you.  ;D Great work! :D

Soifua,
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Offline Jess

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #7 on: December 24, 2003, 03:28:30 PM »
One of the best schools that I've seen with a program for special needs students is Sifu Steve Larson's school in Longview, WA.

If anyone is looking to start a program or just looking for ideas I'd recommend giving him a call
Sifu Lauren Jessup,

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Offline guarded

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2003, 12:56:50 AM »
One of the best schools that I've seen with a program for special needs students is Sifu Steve Larson's school in Longview, WA.

If anyone is looking to start a program or just looking for ideas I'd recommend giving him a call
The post I made earlier in this thread was in regards to Sifu Larson's school.  That is where I train and think he does a great job in that field.  We have several  that train in the "normal' classes and luckily we have some great volunteers that teach the sat. class.  He can be e-mailed at www.longviewkungfu.com.
Jerry Guard
Kajukenbo Tum Pai Brown/Black Sash under Prof. Steve Larson          My everyday stance is my fighting stance.  My fighting stance is my everyday stance.

Offline Mell

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Re:SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENTS
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2003, 07:55:22 PM »
We have several students in our school with sever ADHD problems.  They are included in regular classes and have the same requirements as our other students.  We do give them special attention when needed.  This is especially critical if they are going through medication changes.  I have seen some of these kids really progress and do well with training.  

Our other special needs students fall in the line of limb/joint problems.  We also keep them in regular classes and modify things as necessary.  Everyone understands.  

If you are taking any student with special needs, ask a lot of questions to ensure their safety and ensure a long training career for them.  
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