Teaching Students With Mental Retardation Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Because of the lack of clarity and certainty regarding mental retardation or intellectual disability, the effect of having students with this issue in a classroom can be somewhat more chaotic than with other developmental disorders, where specific modes of instruction have been developed. It can be difficult to predict what a student with mental retardation might be stimulated by, and there are certain areas where individual students might simply have no interest. This can make it incredibly hard to involve them in classroom activities even when special accommodations and attempts are made. Students with mental retardation are not especially disruptive, and do not tend to make learning difficult for others, but this actually runs a greater risk of their going ignored as the classroom's education develops and progresses. For this reason, specific and repeated attempts to engage students with mental retardation in every aspect of the classroom and its activities is seen as the best -- and often the only -- method of encouraging development.

A conversation with a non-special needs instructor revealed the disparity in the knowledge of these topics and the assessment of difficulties and corrective methods for these difficulties. The lack of understanding regarding the mental retardation label is one of the reasons that the term is beginning to pass out of usage. There is a tendency to simply pass over individuals diagnosed with retardation as simply having n inability to learn, when this is not the case at all. Their unexplainable lack of learning ability is frustrating to many educators and researchers, and this has only contributed to the lack of understanding surrounding the issue.

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