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Optimal Education Environment

Describe the optimal educational environment in your current or future role as an education by addressing the following:

1. Create a list of best practices for ensuring the safety of students.
2. Discuss how the needs of students with disabilities would be met.
3. Outline a plan for protecting both teachers and the school district from liability issues.
4. Identify any anticipated challenges to your proposed plan and explain how you would address these.

Solution Preview

There are many factors which go into an effective educational program. The public is most aware of the importance of standardized testing as well as state guidelines. The curriculum is also determined by scope and sequence. This is outside of whatever methods or grouping plans the teacher will employ. However, there is another aspect to an educationally relevant curriculum, and that is safety. Especially as we discuss educational reforms, a feeling of safety is important to the transition into changes. The particular types of safety are physical and emotional/social. It would be difficult to teach anything without attention to safety concerns.

Best Practices for Safety of Children:

The classroom organization is an important factor in planning physical space. The National Association for the Education of Young Children (1998) suggests providing a minimum of 35 square feet of indoor space for each child in a preschool or primary classroom (Henniger, 2005). Additionally, the location of windows, heating and cooling vents, doors, floor coverings impact the placement of the physical environment as well.

Secondly, the availability of resources in the classroom are important. The tables, chairs, room dividers, and storage cabinets strongly influence room design. An early childhood class will have play and learning centres in the classroom that will have an impact on the space. The factors to bear in mind are the goals of the program, for this will determine what materials should be readily available or not (Henniger, 2005). Centres which differ according to noisy versus quieter areas should be separated. Having a noisy center like the block area near the library area creates unnecessary distractions for children. The banging of blocks and the creative discussion that often accompany the construction process may prevent a child who is concentrating on a book from becoming deeply involved in the story (Henniger, 2005).

Third, an important concern is planning for grouping patterns. There may be one section for whole class meeting, and smaller ones for cooperative learning ...

Solution Summary

There are many factors which go into an effective educational program. The public is most aware of the importance of standardized testing as well as state guidelines. The curriculum is also determined by scope and sequence. This is outside of whatever methods or grouping plans the teacher will employ. However, there is another aspect to an educationally relevant curriculum, and that is safety. Especially as we discuss educational reforms, a feeling of safety is important to the transition into changes. The particular types of safety are physical and emotional/social. It would be difficult to teach anything without attention to safety concerns.

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