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Collaboration between a Special Education Teacher and a PE Teacher at Teaching Special Needs Students and Their Professional Development

Maja Zelič (2019) Collaboration between a Special Education Teacher and a PE Teacher at Teaching Special Needs Students and Their Professional Development. MSc thesis.

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    In primary schools, an increasing number of schoolchildren who are identified as students with special needs are educated according to the regular school programme. These students show deficits in the areas of education, mobility, organisation and social skills, which entitles them to adjustments and additional professional assistance. For comprehensive treatment of these students and their optimal progress in the learning process, team collaboration of teachers is important, especially the collaboration between special education and rehabilitation teachers, who contribute specific knowledge about strategies and the nature of special needs, and teachers who teach these students in class. This master's thesis examined how well special education and rehabilitation teachers collaborate with physical education (PE) teachers when teaching special-needs students. As more prominence is given to academic subjects often little attention is paid to educational subjects, including PE, which are treated as less important. Nevertheless, PE is the only subject, which focuses on the body and enables consistent biological, psychological and social development of students. Many exercises, which students perform during PE affect the development of skills which are significant for their progress in other subjects. Special-needs students, therefore, should not be overlooked in PE despite the deficits they show in their motoric development, state of sensory faculties, perception, sensory integration, orientation, psychological processes as well as speech and language. Our research included 35 special education and rehabilitation teachers and 34 PE teachers, and an interview with a PE teacher was conducted, which provided an insight into the experience of actual collaboration. The research showed that the majority of special education and rehabilitation teachers and PE teachers have already collaborated with each other. The thesis also examined to what extent the PE teachers acknowledge the special needs of students in their classes, how they assess their competency to teach specific groups of special-needs students, and which adjustments they most often use during lessons. The results were studied in the context of professional development and comparison was made as regards possible differences concerning the length of service, professional title and sources of gained knowledge. Several starting points were formed, i.e. for teaching different groups of special-needs students, possible behavioural special needs and skills necessary for teachers to be able to adjust lessons, as well as areas and activities which can be developed by a special education and rehabilitation teacher in the framework of individual professional assistance. Recommendations for promoting social integration of students during PE lessons were also formed. This master's thesis aims to highlight the significance of PE as a school subject which enables special-needs students to relax and overcome deficits, and to emphasise the importance of collaboration between special education and rehabilitation teachers and PE teachers.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: special education and rehabilitation teacher, physical education (PE) teacher, students with special needs, PE lessons, professional development
    Number of Pages: 118
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Milena Košak BabuderMentor
    prof. dr. Milena Valenčič ZuljanComentor
    Link to COBISS: https://plus.si.cobiss.net/opac7/bib/peflj/12629577
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 6037
    Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2019 08:17
    Last Modified: 14 Oct 2019 08:17
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/6037

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