Special needs is an umbrella term for a staggering array of diagnoses: physical (e.g. muscular dystrophy, chronic asthma, epilepsy), developmental (e.g. dyslexia, processing disorder, autism), behavioural/emotional (e.g. ADHD, oppositional defiance disorder, panic attacks), and sensory impaired (e.g. blind, visually impaired, limited hearing). Understanding the characteristics of special needs and their implications for behaviour, learning and the ability to process information is critical for anyone working or interacting with special needs students. This course will give participants a fundamental understanding of different special needs diagnosis, planning inclusive lessons, creating inclusive school environment, teacher’s emotions and attitudes working with special needs students and working with parents.
The main objective of the course is to prepare participants to work effectively with different special needs:
- While teaching other subjects
- For working with parents
- For creating inclusive school environment for all learners
By the end of the course participants will have a substantial understanding of different special needs characteristics and consequences for learning. They will also practice to use evidence-based practices to provide effective interventions and explore typical strengths and weaknesses of individuals with special needs. The course will address the specifics of working with parents of students with special needs and creating inclusive school environment.
The course is designed as an interactive process with emphasis on establishing a mentor relationship between participants and trainer. The format of the course is didactic, experiential, and interactive along with discussions, individual and team exercises. The focus is on experiential learning and workshop approach. The participants will also see examples of inclusive education for special needs students in Slovenian education system.
The course is aimed for school leaders, teachers, school counsellors and other professionals working with students with special needs that are interested in inclusive education.
Half day excursion.
We will try to benefit from peer exchange of experiences and effective strategies for working with special needs students and their parents.
Planning follow up activities, dissemination and implementation of learning outcomes.
Discussing possibilities for future cooperation among participants.
Download Europass template for this course
- 27. 01. – 01. 02.
(CONFIRMED – open for registration)
Pre-registration form for Special Needs
Useful information about Communication skills course
Special needs are commonly defined by what a child can’t do—milestones unmet, foods banned, activities avoided, or experiences denied. These hindrances can hit families hard and may make special needs seem like a tragic designation. This course will help you to develop the necessary self-confidence for working with special needs and facilitate competencies for accommodating your teaching strategies to students with special needs. By the end of the course you will be able to:
- Know when and how to differentiate appropriately, using approaches which enable students to be taught effectively
- Have a secure understanding of how a range of factors can inhibit students’ ability to learn, and how best to overcome these
- Examine the developmental and sensory-motor differences that may impact school, play, social and self-help skills
- Learn to use evidence-based practices to provide effective interventions and explore typical strengths and weaknesses of individuals with special needs
- Accommodate teaching materials and teaching strategies to students with special needs
- Develop behavioural intervention suitable for students with special needs
- Facilitate individual strengths, with high and appropriate expectations for each student
- Apply effective relationships with parents of students with special needs
- Encourage broader school environment for inclusive education
Inclusive education is about how we develop and design our schools, classrooms, programmes and activities so that all students learn and participate together. You can easily transfer the knowledge from this course to your work environment by:
- Using suggested teaching tools and strategies in planning your own lessons
- Developing learning material with “universal design”
- Implementing suggested behavioural strategies to your interactions with students
- Facilitating growth mindset to address the limiting beliefs of your students
- Organizing effective sessions with parents
- Promoting inclusive education ideas in your school
Meet the trainers
Mateja Štirn, M. Sc., is a psychologist and psychotherapist with many years of working experiences in fields of psychological counseling, trainings and psychoeducational work with groups and in the field of violence and child abuse prevention. She works in the Institute for psychological-counseling developmental projects (ISA Institute). Important part of her professional focus goes to the problem of psychological trauma, working with victims of traumatic events and to child abuse primary prevention. She has been the CAP (Child Abuse Prevention) project coordinator for Slovenia since 1998 and the head of the Strengthening Families Initiative for Slovenia since 2010. Important part of her professional and personal development are permanent trainings covering the basic areas of her professional interests. She finished the Integrative psychotherapy training and gained the integrative psychotherapist certificate.
Jasna Solarović is a psychologist and a psychotherapist in private practice in Ljubljana, offering individual psychotherapy for adults, and child psychotherapy, incl. working with parents and/or family. She is also running a psychodrama psychotherapy group for adults to work on relational issues, incl. relation to oneself.
She has worked in the NGO settings for 20 years, in projects run to the principles of therapeutic communities and milieu therapy in Slovenia, for children with emotional and behavioural problems. Starting as a programme facilitator at 17, she went on to head an NGO and between 2009 and 2014 designed and ran therapeutic summer programmes for children and families, a family weekend, many facilitator trainings, and a few programmes at schools. For 3 years (2004–2007) she was assistant lecturer at the Faculty of Social Work in Ljubljana. She has done training in brief systemic family therapy by Peter Nemetscheck for 2 years, and is now finishing a five-year training programme to a Diploma in Psychodrama Psychotherapy at The Birmingham Institute for Psychodrama in UK. The programme gives a strong focus on observing and working with group process, and incorporates attachment theory, body work and working with trauma.