Hacks for the Special Ed Classroom

I am so excited to share some of the best hacks and advice with you for your special education classroom from our very own SSE Blogger Team!


IEP Goal Bins are a life saver in self-contained since our students have several goals and objectives on their IEP! Go through each student’s IEP and gather all materials needed to monitor each of their IEP goals and objectives. Organize the materials into baggies and label with the objective it is for and instructions on how to collect the data. Label the materials in the bin the same way on your data sheets. You will save so much time and energy collecting data each week with your students!” – Whitney

Learn how to setup IEP Goal Bins here.

2. Collaborate Whenever Possible

When I work with students who are part of self-contained classrooms, I prefer to use a “push in” model of service where I treat the student in their classroom setting.  This not only allows me to see how the student functions in their natural environment, but it also provides an opportunity for the classroom staff to see what each student is working on in OT!  It really helps promote carryover!  Almost all of my students in the self-contained classrooms who have OT as a related service also have speech services.  My hack is simple: collaborate whenever possible!  As an IEP team, we are working together to support the educational needs of the child.  I have found that running full [or half] class groups with the speech therapist in the classroom setting has been the most beneficial way to make generalizable progress with my students.  This school year, my speech therapist and I made a Simply Special Ed sensory visual recipe each week with a variety of our students in our special program classrooms!  Not only were we able to target sensory regulation and functional fine motor skills, but students developed daily living skills as well as comprehension and communication skills!  The kids [and staff!] had a blast! – Allison

Read about sensory bins on a budget here.

3. Utilize a data wall!

“Special education teacher hack: data wall: keep many copies of all my frequently used data sheets in dry erase sleeves on the front bulletin board. This makes it very easy to access, but also to be able to direct my staff to. Also, if your data sheets are out and available, you are much more likely to take the data! ” – Arielle

Learn more about data here!

These hacks will make a huge difference in your special education career!

What’s your favorite hack you use in your classroom?

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