Factors That Influence Learning

TASK 18 – Outline the factors that influence learning. Learning is influenced by many factors such as attention, motivation and emotions as well as by learner characteristics like prior knowledge, cognitive and learning styles and intellectual capabilities. The following list shows a number of other factors that may also have a bearing on a pupil’s capability to learn: * Family * Culture * Gender * Impact of peers * Subject content * Teaching style * Learning skills * Recognition of need to learn * Past experiences of learning * Personal learning styles * Range of opportunities Awareness of the learning process * Barriers to learning * Rewards and punishments All these factors have an impact on the quality and quantity of learning for the pupil. For example: * Where cultural background encourages the experience of different learning opportunities then the pupil will have more opportunities of developing effective learning skills. * Not all pupils acknowledge the value of learning. If a pupil has low-level skills, they may deny the importance of learning as a defence mechanism to prevent exposing themselves or the reason might be a lack of family or peer support for learning. Some pupils might be very much influenced by their peers, either having their own learning experiences enhanced or discouraged by peers. * If a pupil encounters a teaching approach that does not match their own learning style, they may be put at a disadvantage. * A productive and effective learning experience will encourage learning skills, which enables that pupil to successfully learn in other contexts. * Facilitators of learning might not provide effective rewards for learning, such as attention and praise.

If the young person relies on rewards such as money or gifts for motivation then they will have difficulty learning in a non-reinforcing environment. Factors that may hinder learning for pupils with special educational needs may be attitudinal, organisational or practical. Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 2 Outline the principles of educational inclusion. Schools and teachers are now required to provide equality of opportunity for all children: * Boys and girls * Children with SEN * Children with disabilities Children from different social and cultural backgrounds * Children from different ethnic groups (including traveller’s, refugees and asylum seekers) * Those from diverse linguistic backgrounds The Government is committed to promoting the inclusion of pupils with special educational needs (SEN) and disabilities into mainstream schools that recognise and celebrate human diversity. Under UK legislation, educational institutions are required to ensure that no learner is prevented from participating fully in education or disadvantage because of factors such as: * Physical, sensory or cognitive impairment Ethnic or social background * Gender Inclusion of children and young people with special educational needs is a key principle of current educational policy and practice. Inclusion is a process by which local education authorities, schools and others develop their cultures, policies and practices to include pupils in mainstream education. Principles of an inclusive education service: * With the right training, strategies and support nearly all children with special educational needs can be successfully included in mainstream education. Schools, LEAs and others should actively seek to remove barriers to learning and participation. * An inclusive education service offers excellence and choice and incorporates the views of parents and children. * The interests of all pupils must be safeguarded. * All children should have access to an appropriate education that gives them the opportunity to achieve their personal potential. * Mainstream education will not always be right for every child all of the time.

Equally just because mainstream education may not be right at a particular stage it does not prevent the child from being included successfully at a later stage. The National Curriculum Handbook for primary teachers and the Handbook for secondary teachers in England incorporates a statutory inclusion statement on providing effective learning opportunities for all pupils. It outlines how teachers can modify the National Curriculum programmes of study to provide all pupils with relevant and appropriately challenging work at each KS.

It sets out three principles that are essential to developing a more inclusive curriculum: * Setting suitable learning challenges * Responding to pupils diverse learning needs * Overcoming potential barriers to learning and assessment for individuals and groups of pupils. Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 3 Explain the importance of attitudes, skills and resources in the achievement of successful educational inclusion. Sometimes for children with special educational needs and disabilities, obstacles can stand in the way of them getting/achieving the right education and support.

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Factors that can affect success: * Special education professionals should work in partnership with parents and take into account views of parents in respect of their child’s particular needs * Special educational provision’s should take into account the wishes of the child concerned, taking into account their age and understanding * The culture, practice, management and deployment of resources in school should be designed to ensure all children’s needs are met * Interventions for each child should be reviewed regularly to assess their impact, the child’s progress and the views of the child, their teachers and their parents * LEAs, schools and settings should work together to ensure that any child’s special educational needs are identified early * LEAs, schools and settings should exploit good and best practice when devising interventions * There should be co-operation between all the agencies and a multi-disciplinary approach to the resolution of issues Depending on the school setting the teaching assistant may play a vital role in supporting the children with SEN. The tasks that a teaching assistant may help with might include helping pupils with reading difficulties, supporting speech therapy programmes and helping pupils to access the curriculum. Explain the importance of encouraging independent learning when promoting educational inclusion.

Independent learning concentrates on the creation of experiences and opportunities that help students to become self-reliant, self-motivated and lifelong learners. Independent learning focuses on the individuals need for independence and active participation in their own learning, both in school and in society. Independent learning is important because it is part of an ongoing, lifelong learning process that stimulates deeper thinking and reflection and promotes the continuing growth of students’ abilities and strengths. Independent learners develop the attitudes, knowledge and skills needed to make responsible decisions and take actions dealing with their own learning.

Teaching staff can help students take responsibility for their learning by providing opportunities and strategies for learning independently and by encouraging pupils to initiate and actively participate in their own learning. Learning is an interactive process among pupils and between teachers and pupils. Pupils engage in learning activities as individuals who are interdependent with other individuals in the classroom and wider society. Students will move towards independence in varying degrees, depending on factors such as age, skill level and ability in a particular subject. Natalie Levy Student no: SH 34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 4

What support can a teaching assistant provide to a pupil with special educational needs? As a teaching assistant there are three aspects in fostering Independent Learning. They are: * The learning environment created by the staff * The relationship established between teacher and learner * The teaching and modelling of skills needed for independent learning A teaching assistant can play an important role in providing a supportive environment that encourages pupil motivation, self-confidence, interest and desire to learn. It is important that the teaching assistant, in order to promote independent learning, knows their students well and should reflect upon their pupils learning processes.

In order to help the students succeed as independent learners, the teaching assistant needs to anticipate difficulties and offer support at crucial intervals. The teaching assistant must develop a good understanding of their students’ strengths and weaknesses (socially, emotionally, intellectually and physically) their exceptionalities, their health and their cultural backgrounds. The relationship between the teaching assistant and learner should foster increasing learner responsibility, meaning that as the student grows in maturity and understanding, they are able to take on greater responsibility for their own learning. An important aspect of the teaching assistant’s role is the teaching and modelling of skills needed for independent learning.

The attitudes, skills and knowledge of independent learning will be fostered in students through ways in which the teaching assistant organises the classroom and instructs the student. * Teachers should utilise instructional techniques, strategies and approaches based on collaboration between learner and teacher. This will encourage student participation, both in determining goals and in monitoring the learning process. * Teachers should use approaches that foster student self-confidence and empowers students to take responsibility for their own learning. * Students should be taught activities which facilitate the transition to independence through modelling, demonstration and direct instruction of learning skills.

These should then be followed by practice opportunities provided by the teaching assistant, who in turn monitors the students’ progress towards their goals of independent decision making. * The teaching assistant should share with students what is being done and why an activity is useful. The goal is that learners will eventually make their own decisions, connect what they already know with what they are learning, make judgements and inferences, apply new ideas and derive pleasure from learning. The teaching assistant’s role is to be a patient facilitator, showing students how to learn independently, encouraging them, providing feedback and supporting their efforts.

These are all crucial factors in providing a learning environment which fosters independent learning and which motivates students to pursue independent learning skills. Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 5 List the stages of the statementing process. Children with SEN who attend mainstream schools are placed on the SEN list in line with this guidance: * If they require provision which is different from, and additional to, that made for most pupils (“schools action”) * If the pupils fail to make adequate progress, further provision is to be made (“schools action plus”) The special educational needs of the majority of children should be met effectively through School Action and School Action Plus. In a small number of cases, where the child is still a ignificant cause for concern after intervention in School Action Plus, the school will ask the LEA for a Statutory Assessment. This involves the LEA, working co-operatively with parents, the child’s school and other agencies, where appropriate. The LEA will seek evidence from the school that strategies and programmes implemented over a period of time have been unsuccessful. The LEA will need information about the child’s progress over time and clear documentation on the child’s SEN and the action taken to deal with these needs. They will then decide whether a statutory statement of the child’s educational needs is necessary. Statutory assessment does not always lead to a Statement of Special Educational Needs.

The LEA then looks at the statement request. It may be that a certain child’s needs are very significant and complex, in which case the LEA will carry out a multi-agency assessment and then, if appropriate, provide a Statement of Special Educational Needs. A Statement of Special Educational Needs is a legal document that sums up all the advice gathered during the Statutory Assessment. It sets out what the child’s special educational needs are and the special educational provision required in order to meet them. It names the school where this provision is to be made and any other non-educational needs and provisions affecting arrangements at school.

This will be reviewed at least every year but can be more frequent if professionals working with the child or the parents identify further concerns. A Statement of Special Educational Needs is split into six parts: 1. Identifies the child or young person and those with parental responsibility. 2. Identifies the needs of the child or young person. 3. Identifies the provision required to meet the needs as described in Part 2. 4. Names the school where the child or young person will be placed. 5. Identifies health needs 6. Determines what provisions are needed to meet those health needs. The provision required will normally be quantified in terms of hours of provision and staffing arrangements in order to meet the changing needs of the child.

The school must provide: * Appropriate facilities and equipment, staffing arrangements and curriculum * Any modifications to the application of the National Curriculum * Appropriate exclusions from the application of the National Curriculum and changes needed to maintain a broad and balanced curriculum. Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 6 All children with a statement should have short-term targets, set out in an IEP, prepared by the SENCO with the support from the external agencies and the class teacher. Throughout the process, local authority officers work with parents to reach agreement about the content of the statement.

Where the LEA declines to provide a statement, the school may request a reassessment after six months. Parents also have the right to appeal against the decision to the SEN tribunal. List and explain the broad content of the SEN code of Practice. The SEN Code of Practice gives practical guidance on the fulfilment of functions under part 4 of the Education Act 1996 to local authorities, the governing bodies of maintained schools, settings in receipt of government funding to provide early education and to those who help them, including the health services and social services. It also provides general practical guidance to such settings about the provision of nursery education to children with special educational needs.

The Code of Practice provides a framework for developing strong partnerships between parents, schools, LEAs and health and social services. It promotes a consistent approach to meeting children’s special educational needs and places the rights of children at the heart of the process, allowing them to be heard and to take part in the decision making process wherever possible. The focus is on ensuring that SEN are identified as quickly as possible. The code sets out five principles: * That children with SEN should have their needs met * That their needs will normally be met in mainstream schools * That the views of children should be sought and taken into account * That arents have a vital role to play in supporting their children’s education * Those children with SEN should be offered full access to a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum in the foundation stage and later years. The Code sets out guidance on policies and procedures aimed at enabling pupils with SEN to reach their full potential, to be included fully in their school communities and make a successful transition to adulthood. It recommends that schools adopt a graduated approach to match provision to children’s SEN so that, where necessary, increasingly available specialist expertise can respond to a child’s individual needs if they do not make adequate progress.

The Code also provides advice on carrying out statutory assessment of a child’s SEN and of making and maintaining a statement of SEN for children with severe and complex needs, this would include carrying out annual reviews of statements and planning for young people with SEN when they make the transition to college, training and employment. The Code emphasises the importance of involving children and parents in decision-making and of effective multi-agency, to combine services around the needs of the children and their families. List and explain the broad content of the LEA and school SEN policies. The responsibility of the LEA in respect of SEN is to: Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6

Page no: 7 * Plan its overall special educational provision and review it periodically * Assess those pupils whose special needs may require a Statement of SEN * Ensure that the provision specified in the Statement of SEN has been made available * Initiate annual reviews of every Statement of SEN * Monitor the performance of its maintained schools and Support Services * Identify, assess and make provision for all pre-school children who may have special educational needs The LEA also has a duty to consult with schools, Health and Social Services and voluntary organisations over its SEN Policy, which it must publish and keep under review.

Regulations require that the LEA must publish information on the arrangements they make for children with SEN in general. The policy covers all pupils and young people between the ages of 0 – 19 who may/will experience some form of difficulty in their learning which may arise from a variety of factors, including those relating to the pupil or young person themselves, their learning environment and their social environment. The policy model has three key elements: * Philosophy – Relevant basic details. * Principles – Broad guidelines. General statements derived from the beliefs which can be interpreted by policy users to guide. * Procedures – Practical details.

Operating routines and actions derived from the principles which cover the most common areas of policy application or critical events. Updating of the policy and evaluation of its implementation will be undertaken through annual review by the LEA’s SEN Management group, with due reference to SEN initiatives contained within the Education Development Plan and associated planning documents. The school SEN policy is a document that gathers together, in one place, all LEA guidance and information on all aspects of special needs and inclusion. This includes Special Educational Needs and also many other issues to do with the management of inclusion in schools. It is intended as a management tool for senior managers in schools as well as SENCOs.

The framework for the Special Educational Needs policy is provided by: * The United Nations convention on the Rights of the Children (Salamanca Statement) * The Children Act 1989 * The 1994 Special Educational Needs Code of Practice (revised 2002) * The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 * The Education Act 1996 * Key DfEE regulations and circulars on the organisation of special educational needs * The Green Paper “Excellence for All” 1997 and the DfEE Programme of Action 1998 * The Schools Standards and Framework Act 1998 * The Human Rights Act 1998 * The SEN Code of Practice (Draft) 2000 * The “Quality Protects” Management Action Plan * The SEN and Disability Act 2001 Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC

Assignment no:6 Page no: 8 TASK 19 – Research the responsibilities of all teaching and support staff for learners with special educational needs in a local school to you. Responsibilities and roles of staff/agencies from the school in which I am based. Class teacher: * Should always be aware of any children who are already on the SEN register. * Make sure time is made available for Termly and Annual Reviews. * Attend INSERVICE training. * Attend regular meetings with the SENCO. * Take account of different needs when planning. * Take into account the feelings of, wishes and knowledge of parents. * Maintain a class SEN file which is to be stored securely. Maintains confidentiality at all times. * Seek advice from the SENCO on strategies which might be used to help the pupil. Teaching Assistants/Learning Support Assistants: * Work on a one-to-one basis where necessary. * Allocated time to work with children at School Action and School Action Plus. * Attend INSERVICE training. * Attend regular meetings with the SENCO. * Have a minimum of 20 hours per week to support children with SEN. SENCO: * Provide professional guidance to staff with the aim of providing high quality teaching. * Has an overview of provisions made for pupils with SEN. * Liaises with teachers, TA’s and multi-agencies when necessary. Ascertains which stage each child is operating at and reviews when appropriate. * Keeps an updated confidential register. * Arranges review meetings with parents/teachers. * Updates teachers on SEN children and explores/discusses current initiatives. * Responds to specific requests from teachers and other multi-agencies * Visit nursery, pre-schools and secondary schools to help with integration when moving in or on from our school. * Store SEN information securely and in an orderly fashion ensuring easy access. * Share information with the Head Teacher/teachers/TA’s where appropriate. Educational Psychologists: * Performs formal psychological testing. Assess results and determine whether a child has special educational needs. * Give advice to teachers/TA’s in relation to particular pupils (requested through the SENCO) * Runs INSERVICE training on particular needs. * Carries out intervention work such as counselling, behaviour management and student study skills. Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 9 Speech and Language Therapist: * Assesses the extent of the problem. * Makes a diagnosis of the problem. * Liaises with the SENCO/teacher/parent on the best programme of care for the child. School Nurse: * Carries out various hearing/sight tests. * Inform staff in the school setting of any particular health requirements. Trains staff if injections or other medical procedures are required. * Consult/refer to a doctor if they think other professional may be required in the care of the child. Peripatetic Teacher/Support Worker: * Assess and test the child. * Offer advice and guidance to teachers/TA’s. * Advises on specialist equipment when/if needed. In the school setting where I am the school will also contact other settings who offer OUTREACH services if there is a need. Outline the purpose and use of at least two different resources and two pieces of specialist equipment for learners with special educational needs that might be available in schools. Pupils with poor vision may have difficulty in using a normal computer.

However there are a number of techniques that can be applied to assist pupils. Touch typing skills often make it possible to use a computer more effectively. They are particularly valuable for partially sighted and blind computer users as they remove the need to constantly look between the keyboard and the screen. Drills are used to practice each key and sequence of keys until the whole alphabet is covered. Large print keyboard stickers will help a pupil identify where the keys are, they are a learning tool rather than something to be relied upon. These are available in different colours and styles. Many people with no usable vision, may find it useful to operate their computer by voice (known as voice in-voice out).

The users speak and the software recognises what was said and types it into the computer. This means that: * Words are correctly spelled. * The user’s flow is not interrupted by having to stop and worry about spelling. * The need to type or hand write is removed – this is also helpful if the user is also dyspraxic. Speech output is also used. This means the user does not need to be able to see the screen to use a computer. Software called a screen-reader can intelligently send all information to a voice synthesiser such as what is being typed, what has been typed and menu options. Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 10

Pupils with very poor motor skills will often struggle with normal computers as well. They may find it hard to relate the movement of their hand on the mouse to the movement of the cursor on screen. In these instances it may be that a trackball or joystick is easier to use. A normal keyboard has over 100 keys and can sometimes be very confusing to the user; again key stop stickers could be used. Lowercase keyboards can be used (a standard keyboard but in lower case only) and also overlay keyboards (touch sensitive membranes which slide over the top of a normal keyboard and determine the functions of the keyboard). All of the above are available in the setting where I am and make it easier for the user.

They feel confident using computers and can also join in mainstream ICT lessons. Explain the contents and purpose of an individual education plan and explain how a teaching assistant could contribute towards achieving its aim. The Individual Education Plan (IEP) is a planning, teaching and reviewing tool. It should support the process of planning intervention for an individual pupil with SEN. IEPs should be teaching and learning plans setting out “what, “how” and “how often” particular knowledge, understanding and skills should be taught through additional or different activities from those provided for all pupils through the differentiated curriculum.

Wherever possible pupils should be involved in setting their own targets for the IEP, in agreeing and implementing appropriate strategies and evaluating the outcomes. IEPs should: * Raise achievement for pupils with SEN * Be seen as working documents * Use a simple format * Detail provision additional to or different from those generally available for all pupils * Detail targets which are extra or different from those for most pupils * Be jargon free * Be comprehensible to all staff and parents * Be distributed to all staff as necessary * Promote effective planning * Help pupils monitor their own progress * Result in good planning and intervention by staff * Result in the achievement of specified learning goals for pupils with SEN IEPs should focus on: Up to three or four key individual targets set to help meet the individual pupil’s needs and particular priorities * Targets should relate to key areas in communication, literacy, mathematics and aspects of behaviour or physical skills * The pupil’s strengths and successes should underpin targets set and the strategies used Though not included in the IEP teachers should always refer back to the pupil’s Individual Pupil Record to get information on their baseline or entry level assessment as well as information about the pupil’s particular needs and current strengths. This profile should also include information regarding the pupils needs in relation to general strategies such as: Natalie Levy Student no: SH34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 11 * The short-term targets set for or by the pupil * The teaching strategies to be used * The provision to be put in place * When the plan is to be reviewed * Success and/or exit criteria * Outcomes (to be recorded when IEP is reviewed) Success criteria in an IEP means that targets have been achieved and new targets need to be set, whilst exit criteria means that not only have targets been achieved but that an IEP may no longer be required.

Teachers should always aim to talk to pupils about their IEPs in a quiet place away from the rest of the class. A teaching assistant can contribute towards achieving the IEP aims by: * Providing a positive caring and learning environment that promotes improved self esteem and confidence * Supporting the child on a one-to-one basis in the area of disability e. g. reading, writing * Providing a quiet place to work * Keeping instructions direct and simple, one at a time. Repeating and rephrasing instructions where necessary * Providing visual cues and peer mentoring * Providing consistent and ongoing clarification * Teaching the child “strategies” not just facts Reducing working time and expectations initially to ensure the child is successful * Trying to ensure that there is a good partnership between home and the school setting and keeping parents informed as to how they can support their child at home. Describe how you might carry out a case study for a learner with special educational needs and what information it should contain. To carry out a case study for a learner with special educational needs the objective is to portray: * How the learner’s needs are identified * The learning experiences and provisions in place for them * The levels of satisfaction, appropriateness and challenge for the learner * The learning impacts and outcomes for them

In a case study I would need to conduct a range of interviews with: * The individual learner (except in the case of a very young person) * Relatives or friends who might have a perspective on the learners experience and development * Those directly providing the learning opportunities at an operational level (tutors, teachers etc) this would usually include local authority representatives. Questions I may need to ask are: * How are the learner’s needs identified and what learning experiences are in place for them? * Are the learner’s satisfied and challenged? * What are the learning impacts and outcomes for them? Natalie Levy Student no: SH 34604/DLC Assignment no: 6 Page no: 12

Where a pupils’ learning has been supported, helped or promoted by local authorities already, my report should identify the nature of the learning experiences, the outcome derived by the individual learner, the factors contributing to the effectiveness of the learning opportunity and key factors that contributed to the success. Alternatively, where a pupil has not been supported, helped or promoted I should include in the report the key factors and barriers affecting achievement. My report should draw out key messages for local authority staff, schools and other organisations and individuals concerned with successful learning. In short a case study should include: * The relevant characteristics of the learner * How his/her learning needs were identified, or the learning opportunities were accessed * Standard of achievement * Quality of access to curriculum * Support available Quality and effectiveness of support * How well providers work in partnership * Barriers that prevent the learner accessing appropriate curriculum and support * Key factors and barriers affecting the achievement in these outcomes * Progress made * Examine and illustrate the distinct role and contribution of the local authority leadership in promoting and ensuring learning * Key issues for action * The next steps or future developments both for the learner and local authority and other providers who may be involved. Design a brief that could be used to advise school staff of the guidelines in confidentiality in an imaginary school. See attached document.

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