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Daliza Cabrera SPEDE 777 Fall 2013 Journal #1 Coming in to the Early Childhood Special Education program, I have

learned so much and I feel that there is so much more than I have to learn. Prior to entering graduate school, my only knowledge of early childhood special education was things that I heard from things that other people have heard. After about a year and a half, I have learned so much as an educator and look forward to receiving more hands on experience on the field. For this student teaching experience, I have placed a couple of goals for myself. This is the first time that I am in a special education setting outside of the preschool setting. Since one of my long-term goals consist of eventually working in the public school system, I am trying to be as hands on and as receptive as I possibly can to the ways of teaching in the classroom. Things that I hope to gain through this experience are better classroom management techniques. I also want to learn better ways to communicate to children with a broad spectrum of special needs, creating the appropriate modifications and learning the time management skills for myself to be able to come up with these plans and modifications to better the classroom environment.

Along with learning great techniques to apply to the flow of my future classroom, I also hope to learn of different curriculum and assessment techniques that could be applied in the classroom for children in an early childhood special education setting. Something that I love about the classroom that Im in now is that the transitions and the routine appear to be so clear and the children so easily adjust to whats happening in the classroom throughout the day, despite it being the first weeks of school. It would be great to see and learn from the day to day and have an idea of applications that could be throughout the school year. Characteristics that I feel I bring into the classroom to name a few are ones that are nurturing, enthusiastic, motivated, energetic, and open-mindedness. My strengths are displayed in my delivery of what Im teaching and trying to make it as interesting to the students as I possibly can, trying to make each teaching experience as fun as I can, while trying to reach the educational needs of the children. My long-term goals for the next couple of years consist of working in an inclusion setting for grade 2 or lower. I would like to continue to work and develop on my classroom management techniques overall, along with the delivery of my lessons, creating a balance between child engagement and the information being received by the child. Characteristics that I believe are important to effective teaching are ones that consist of patience, nurture, enthusiasm, knowledge of the classroom culture, flexibility, motivation, care, consistency, encouragement, management skills, and much more. Ill never forget the teachers in my life that demonstrated genuine care

towards me and showed me to love to learn through their very own desire to increase their knowledge of the world and their education. Along with that, Ill also never forget the teachers, who fortunately were few, that treated me negatively and disrespected me because they assumed they had the authority and could speak to me as they liked. Ill never forget the teacher who was the first to ever tell me I was beautiful, just like Ill never forget the teacher that told me sarcastically that she thought my mother said that I was smart. Overall, I would like to create a classroom community where the children in my classroom are not afraid to learn, despite of whom they are or whatever their special needs may be. I want to have a classroom where learning is fun and there is a sense of community, not only with the teachers and students, but with their parents as well.