Everything I Learned...

...As a First Year Special Education Teacher, I Learned Through Acronyms.

With foundations in FAPE and IDEA, I am able to work with students with special needs in classrooms that I do. Everything I learned as a first year teacher in special education, I learned through acronyms.

In my first 10 days I had my first IEP, working with the SLP and OT to ensure the student was in their LRE and can learn utilizing accommodations and modifications. We discussed if a BIP would be needed or if ESY, PT or AT would help. This was all decided after looking at the PLOP and baseline data.

As the year went on, I worked with students with ADHD, AU, DD, SLI and SLD. I learned  how to administer the WJ-R, BASC, KM, WISC and various RS. Presenting this data to SIT team meetings, IEP meetings, and adjusting goals based upon findings.

Almost everything I learned in my first year can be summed up in acronyms. Almost everything, but not all. I learned that I work with a wonderful, supportive staff who cares about students and believe all can succeed. A level of care that cannot be summed up in just a few short letters.

I gave this little speech of sorts at my last mentoring meeting a couple of weeks back. I joked that after my first 10 days I couldn't have said the alphabet correctly after being tongue tied with all of the acronyms. It's hard to think that this school year is almost over. This next week of blogging will probably be pretty reflective. I'm excited for all the things to come, but I'm also excited to have "survived" this first year as well. I hope you all are enjoying your end of the year festivities as well.

In case you were wondering and wanted a key to decipher parts of that spiel.. here is a key:
FAPE- Free and Appropriate Public Education
IDEA- Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
IEP-Individual Education Plan
SLP-Speech Language Pathologist
OT-Occupational Therapist
BIP-Behavior Intervention Plan
ESY-Extended School Year
PT- Physical Therapy
AT- Assistive Technology
PLOP- Present Levels of Performance
AHDH-Attention Deficit Hyperactity Disorder
DD-Developmentally Delayed
SLI-Speech Language Impariement
SLD-Specific Learning Disability
WJ-R- Woodcock Johnson-Revised
BASC- Behavior Assessment System for Children
KM- Key Math
WISC-Weshler Intelligence Scale for Children
RS-Rating Scales
SIT- Student Improvement Team 


  1. Sounds like a regular alphabet soup! Congratulations on making it through your first year and hope your summer is great!


  2. Oh my....you do have a lot of acronyms!!! Congrats on making it through year 1....it is a gooooooood feeling, isn't it!

    Mind Sparks

  3. Congratulations on your 1st year! After teaching for 20 years, I can only tell you that that occasionally they like to change the recipe for alphabet soup. This year, we added PLC to the recipe.

    Thank you for sending the Multiplication Madness!
    Enjoy your summer!

  4. Congrats on getting that first year under your belt! That's quite an accomplishment! I am proud that I knew all but 3 of the acronyms!


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