Staff in SSPs have a broad range of knowledge and expertise in the area of adapting the curriculum to suit a wide range of student learning needs.

With a greater number of students with disabilities enrolled in the regular class, former Sydney Region schools were surveyed to ascertain the areas of need in terms of professional learning and support.

Those identified areas of need include:
  • Differentiating the curriculum
  • Making learning adjustments
  • Modifying work so that students can access the curriculum
  • Access to resources
  • Sample proformas for planning and programming
Student placing a variety of coloured beads into pattern formations

Staff in SSPs perform these specialised tasks on a daily basis and are a very useful source of guidance, information and support for their mainstream colleagues.

Areas of the Curriculum

The areas of the Mathematics curriculum which are the focus of our project consist of:

Number and Algebra

Measurement and Geometry

Statistics and Probability

Lesson Plans

We have developed a selection of lesson plans which demonstrate differentiation of the NSW Mathematics Syllabus for the Australian Curriculum (Stages 1, 3 and 5), including Life Skills, with the purpose of providing support for teachers in mainstream schools to develop learning experiences that are rigorous, meaningful and dignified.

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Lesson Plan Structure

Resources

We have included a range of related resources both physical (including staff developed notebook programs) and online, which can be utilised and modified to best suit the needs of the students in the mainstream class.

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BOSTES NSW K-10 Mathematics Syllabus

The rationale, aim, objectives, outcomes and content of the Mathematics K–10 Syllabus have been designed to accommodate teaching approaches that support the learning needs of all students. The stage statements and the continuum of learning can help teachers identify the starting point for instruction for every student, including those with special education needs.

Collaborative curriculum planning will determine the most appropriate curriculum options for students with special education needs in keeping with their learning needs, strengths, goals and interests.

Most students with special education needs will participate fully in learning experiences based on the regular syllabus outcomes and content. Students may require additional support or adjustments to teaching, learning and assessment activities.

In Kindergarten to Year 6, it is important for all students to have the opportunity to participate fully in and progress through the curriculum. As they move through the developmental stages of learning, students demonstrate individual strengths and establish preferred ways of learning.

There are several curriculum options for students with special education needs in K–6. Students may:

  • engage with selected outcomes and content appropriate to their learning needs
  • engage with syllabus outcomes and content with adjustments
  • engage with outcomes from an earlier stage, using age-appropriate content.

All decisions regarding curriculum options for students with special education needs should be made through the collaborative curriculum planning process to ensure that syllabus outcomes and content reflect the learning needs and priorities of individual students.

In addition, the NSW K–6 curriculum provides for students with special education needs through:

  • inclusive syllabus outcomes and content accessible by the full range of students
  • additional advice and programming support for teachers on how to assist students to access the outcomes of the syllabus
  • specific support documents for students with special education needs as part of the overall syllabus package.
Students build on their achievement in Kindergarten to Year 6 as they undertake courses to meet requirements of the Years 7–10 curriculum.

Students with special education needs can access the Years 7–10 syllabus outcomes and content in a range of ways, including:

  • under regular course arrangements
  • with adjustments to teaching, learning and/or assessment experiences
  • through Years 7–10 Life Skills outcomes and content.

For some students with special education needs, particularly those students with an intellectual disability, it may be determined that adjustments to teaching, learning and assessment are not sufficient to access some or all of the Stage 4 and Stage 5 outcomes.

For these students, the Years 7–10 Life Skills outcomes and content can provide the basis for developing a rigorous, relevant, accessible and meaningful age-appropriate program. A range of adjustments should be explored before a decision is made to access Years 7–10 Life Skills outcomes and content

Prompts

Prompts are cues that provide levels of support for a student to participate and complete a task or activity.

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Phases of Learning

Planning for learning is a cyclical process which incorporates learning outcomes along the way. Phases of Learning are strategies for teaching assessment, reporting and evaluating the effectiveness of units of work.

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