Date Approved

5-4-1998

Embargo Period

8-11-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in Learning Disabilities

Department

Interdisciplinary and Inclusive Education

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Urban, Stanley

Subject(s)

Children with mental disabilities--Education (Preschool)

Disciplines

Disability and Equity in Education

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to formulate a system whereby Individual Education Plan goals and objectives can be written, and curriculum adapted, to meet the unique needs of the preschool handicapped child.

Research of current literature on preschool IEP's and curriculum was conducted before surveying preschool handicapped programs in the Gloucester County New Jersey area. Thirty-two survey instruments were mailed to twenty-one school districts. The surveys included questions in two areas; first, respondents were asked to report on teacher and program information such as teacher certification, experience, number of children in the program, and hours spent in the program; second, information was gathered on teachers' methods and views on the relationship of the IEP goals and objectives to the preschool curriculum used in their program.

A fifty percent rate of return was obtained. Six of the ten respondents stated that IEP's have appropriate goals and objectives and are attainable. Also, sixty percent of respondents answered that they did not use the IEP to write lesson plans. Respondents claimed they write lesson plans based on curricular themes, and that teaching strategies, materials, and schedules are changed based on the teacher's experience. However, when asked if the IEP was used as a tool for teaching, sixty percent of the respondents claimed to do so. Therefore, conclusions on the relationship between IEP and curriculum vary depending on the setting and the child's needs. It is apparent that respondents to this survey used themes and past experiences to write lesson plans, but said they use the IEP as a tool for teaching. This information is conflicting, but when analyzing the respondents' comments, sixty percent reported using the goals and objectives from the IEP once or twice a year as a guideline when planning lessons to be sure the objectives are being met.

Sixty percent of respondents included samples of goals and objectives which can be found in Appendix B. No bank of goals and objectives is consistently used across the county as reported in this survey. There is no consistency in the evaluation process of students' mastery of goals and objectives throughout the districts surveyed.

Each district surveyed has developed a system whereby IEP goals and objectives are written, but curriculum is determined by the individual classroom teacher, who in most cases, reported adapting this curriculum according to their experience. The majority of classes focus on the High Scope Curriculum or some adapted version of the same.

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