What should be taught to students with significant disabilities (SwSD)? Should we lower the bar? Of course not! All students should have the right to the opportunity to learn to read and write, as well the life choices made available through reading and writing competency. We as educators have the responsibility to find ways to support these students so that they can become successful readers and writers. Students with Significant Disabilities require special considerations to ensure these students can achieve as much as possible. One issue is the tendency for these students to become “passive learners.” How can we engage these students? Stephanie reviews research demonstrating how to most effectively support these students in their language and literacy development, such as by targeting phonemic awareness.

Find resources used throughout this playlist here:

Reading Development Playlist

Find each of the modules from this playlist here:

Literacy Intervention for Children with Significant Disabilities: Teaching Considerations

Literacy Intervention for Children with Significant Disabilities: Bilingual Students

Literacy Intervention for Children with Significant Disabilities: Interventions

Please find links to research mentioned in this video series here:

August, Diane (Ed); Shanahan, Timothy (Ed), (2006). Developing literacy in second-language learners: Report on the National Literacy Panel on Language-Minority Children and Youth. (pp. 269-318). Mahwah, NJ, US: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers, xvi, 669 pp.

Erickson, K.A., Koppenhaver, D.A., Yoder, D. E., & Nance, J. (1997). Integrated communication and literacy instruction for a chid with multiple disabilities. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 12(3), 142-150.

Ericson, K. (2003, June 24). Reading Comprehension in AAC. The ASHA Leader.

Foley, B., & Pollatsek, A. (1999). Phonological processing and reading abilities in adolescents and adults with severe congenital speech impairments.Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 15(3), 156-173.

Goetz, K., Hulme, C., Brigstocke, S., Carroll, J. M., Nasir, L., & Snowling, M. (2008). Training reading and phoneme awareness skills in children with Down syndrome. Reading and Writing, 21(4), 395-412.

Kay-Raining Bird, E., Cleave, P.L., Trudeau, N., Thordardottir, El, Sutton, A., & Thorpe, A. (2005). The language abilities of bilingual children with Down Syndrome. American Journal of Speech-language Pathology, 14, 187 – 199.

Koppenhaver, D. A., & Yoder, D. E. (1993). Classroom literacy instruction for children with severe speech and physical impairments (SSPI): What is and what might be. Topics in Language Disorders, 13(2), 1-15.

Labov, W. (2003). When ordinary children fail to read. Reading Research Quarterly, 128-131.

National Early Literacy Panel. (2005). A synthesis of scientific research on young children’s early literacy development. Ohio Department of Education, Early Childhood Conference.

National Reading Panel (2000). Teaching children to read: An evidence-based assessment of the scientific research literature on reading and its implications for reading instruction [on-line]. http://www.nichd.nih.gov/publications/nrp/report.cfm

Neuman, S. B., & Celano, D. (2001). Access to print in low‐income and middle‐income communities: An ecological study of four neighborhoods. Reading Research Quarterly, 36(1), 8-26.

Orellana, M. F. (2003). Responsibilities of children in Latino immigrant homes.New Directions for Youth Development, 2003(100), 25-39.

Paradis, J., Crago, M., Genesee, F., & Rice, M. (2003). French-English Bilingual Children With SLI: How Do They Compare With Their Monolingual Peers?. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 46(1), 113-127.

Pebly, M., & Koppenhaver, D. A. (2001, August). Emergent and early literacy interventions for students with severe communication impairments. In Seminars in speech and language (Vol. 22, No. 3, pp. 221-30).

Pransky, K., & Bailey, F. (2002). To meet your students where they are, first you have to find them: Working with culturally and linguistically diverse at-risk students. The Reading Teacher, 370-383.

Vandervelden, M., & Siegel, L. (2001). Phonological processing in written word learning: Assessment for children who use augmentative and alternative communication. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 17(1), 37-51.

Smith, M. (2007, August 14). Literacy in Ireland. The ASHA Leader.