Helping Students Who Have Special Needs or are At-Risk in Kindergarten: A Teacher's Toolkit

You can consult and use the ideas found in this toolkit even if you are just looking for some new ideas and practices to deal with what children typically need to learn in kindergarten, for example, sitting without slouching, managing transitions, persevering, or sharing ideas in a group. But you would use it more specifically when you want to help a child who faces a particular challenge or who cannot deal with the distress he or she is experiencing. 

Veuillez noter que les contenus sur cette page sont exclusivement en anglais.

The toolkit

1- Intervention planner

Print and use it to guide the process, to record your observations and to keep notes of the intervention strategies you have found and tried.

Download

 

 

 

 

2- Quick Behaviour Locator

The toolkit isn’t likely to have concerns stated exactly as you would. So, find observations or concerns that best match yours by scanning through the lists of behaviours in the Quick Behaviour Locators. There is one for each competency. They help direct you to the appropriate pages in the 3rd set of documents: Intervention Strategy Suggestions where you will find practical suggestions for your problem situation. 

Download

 

 

 

 

 

3- Intervention Strategy Suggestions

Get the competency-related documents suggested by the Quick Behaviour Locator and go to the suggested pages to find strategies to implement.

  1. To perform sensorimotor actions effectively in different contexts
    Download
  2. To affirm his/her personality  Download
  3. To interact harmoniously with others   Download
  4. To communicate using the resources of language
    Download
  5. To construct his/her understanding of the world
    Download
  6. To complete an activity or project
    Download

 

How to use the toolkit

This video illustrates how this set of three documents work together to help you find practical suggestions AND keep a record of your process at the same time. 

 

 

Resources related to the situations and strategies suggested

For each set of suggestions in the Strategy Suggestions documents, there is a list of targeted related resources for you to consult. It offers sites, documents, videos or books meant to illustrate practices or broaden your understanding.

 

Other resources

  • A Teacher's Short Legal Reference to Rights, Obligations, Policies and Procedures   Download
    Practical information, presented in the form of 13 frequently asked questions, designed to help Québec teachers navigate the legal and procedural information related to special-needs and at-risk students, particularly in Kindergarten.
  • Outcomes at the End of Preschool Education: Quick View   Download
  • Pistes d'intervention pour les enfants présentant un retard de développement   Go to site
  • Four Voices of Inclusion   Go to page
  • Insight: Inclusive Education Resources   Go to page

Technical support: viewing pages side by side on screen

How to read the INTERVENTION STRATEGY SUGGESTIONS directly on your screen

The INTERVENTION STRATEGY SUGGESTIONS, whether printed or on screen, require you to read pages horizontally side by side. This video explains what you need to do in order to view two pages side by side in a PDF reader on-screen.

Make sure you have Adobe Acrobat Reader available on your computer. Some other PDF viewers such as Foxit Reader or MAC's Preview also provide the 2-page view feature.
 

What you need to know to begin with

When Adobe Reader opens a file through your browser it doesn't have the 2-page view option.
Therefore, download and save the document to your desktop (or any other file location)
Then, open Adobe (or other) Reader as a stand alone (not through your internet browser).  Browse your computer to open the file.

Now, do the following ...

About the toolkit


This teacher toolkit was created by a group of kindergarten teachers who have a vast experience working with students who are at-risk or have special needs in their classes. The “package” they created will take you through the same problem-solving process that they use every time they are faced with children who experience difficulties, special challenges, or have particular needs. It will help you find ideas and strategies to work with and help a child.


When to consult the toolkit

You could consult and use the ideas found in this toolkit even if you are just looking for some new ideas and practices to deal with what children typically need to learn in kindergarten, for example, sitting without slouching, managing transitions, persevering, or sharing ideas in a group.
But you would use it more specifically when you want to help a child who faces a particular challenge or a child who is in distress and cannot deal with that distress. It can help you better understand the nature of his/her distress, help you offer a warm and secure environment, and help you deal with creating solid, predictable and stable, albeit not perfect, management strategies in the classroom and school.


Why use the toolkit

The toolkit looks at situations and offers suggestions through an educational lens rather than through a diagnostic medical approach which does not actually help in your practice. A diagnosis does not equip you to intervene adequately with children who experience great difficulties. You need to be able to help a child even as you await additional support.
 
Moreover, when you use the toolkit with its Intervention Planner, you will be guided through a series of steps that, in the end, provide you with well-documented data on the student, including observations, interventions and the outcomes of those interventions, that you can then bring to specialists, to parents or to your principal in order to begin the process of requesting support for the child. 


Credits 

Project coordinators: 
Kim McGrath, preschool education consultant, MELS 
Christiane Dufour, educational consultant, LEARN  
  
Project team:
Nancy Burt, teacher, Riverside School Board 
Christiane Dufour, educational consultant, LEARN 
Sheryl Hayes, teacher, Eastern Shores School Board 
Kim McGrath, preschool education consultant, MELS

Editing and linguistic revision 
Christiane Dufour, educational consultant, LEARN

Design 
Christiane Dufour, educational consultant, LEARN 
iEdit

Publisher 
LEARN, 2015

This project was made possible thanks to the support of:
Direction des programmes, DGFJ, Christiane Bourdages-Simpson, Responsable du programme d'éducation préscolaire 
Leading English Education Resource Network (LEARN)

Copyright:
Helping Special Needs and At0risk Students in Kindergarten by LEARN is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License