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Treading Inclusive Spaces 3.0: pursuing inclusive education in Ivano-Frankivsk 14.03.20

  A two-day seminar was held at Ivano-Frankivsk College, Precarpathian national university.

Nolan Patrek, a special education teacher from Minnesota, USA along with Ukrainian colleagues conducted workshops on Inclusive Strategies and Practice and CO-Teaching Strategies for Inclusion.

The participants of the workshops received detailed instructions on the methods and strategies given the opportunity to model and practice them. US and Ukrainian co-teachers provided and secured the on-going support and 2-way feedback. Three stages of co-teaching, think-pair-share and gallery walk activities, station, alternative, parallel and supplementary techniques of teaching combined with defining and discussing philosophy of teaching – the participants received intensive training and immersion into meaningful activities. Being able to practice the strategies, ask questions, share and exchange ideas has been very resourceful for anyone who understands that inclusive education should be implemented taking into account the best international and domestic practices.

Co-teaching is an evidence-based teaching strategy practiced in the US when two adults (general education, special education teachers, teaching assistants or other educators) jointly co-plan, co-teach and co-evaluate the progress of students helping ALL to achieve and succeed. The method lets students and teachers interact effectively and foster the competencies required in adulthood.

Nolan Patrek and Sergiy Sydoriv also conducted a workshop for in-service teachers, specialists and parents on promising inclusive education practices as the part of development and implementation of an inclusive education teacher training curriculum.

The event featured the involvement of motivated college students, who presented their training sessions in modeling strategies of multi-sensory approach for teaching children with special educational needs: color-therapy techniques, mnemonics in speech development, kinesiology, bio-energoplasty, storytelling and art technologies. The next steps of the project trainees will be to conduct training sessions among their peers in schools and communities; and to present the results at Steps in Inclusive Spaces 4.0 conference.

Without Borders: Sustaining and Developing Inclusive Education Community project event was organized by USG Exchange Alumni small grants program members, Ivano-Frankivsk college, Institute on Community Integration, University of Minnesota, U.S. Embassy and Step into Life NGO.