Special Needs Essay

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Part A: Analysis and Evaluation of Student Profile – ‘Matthew’

MATTHEW
Matthew is a 9-year-old boy who has recently finished grade 3. He was diagnosed as having intellectual impairment when he was grade 1. Matthew’s school has a special education unit which consists of special education trained teachers and teacher aides. They offer him one-on-one support within the classroom as well the opportunity to work with other children who are at the same level of ability as him in small group activities. These activities are the same or similar to the classroom activities and when in the classroom he receives one-on-one support from the classroom teacher where necessary.

INTELLECTUAL IMPAIRMENT
Intellectual impairment is a disability that causes restrictions on intellectual abilities and adaptive behaviours (conceptual, social and practical skills people use to function in everyday lives). This may cause delayed language development and slow motor development. (National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, 2007). Intellectual impairment has been defined by the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (2002) and they state that:

"Intellectual disability is characterised by significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behaviour as expressed in conceptual, social, and practical adaptive skills. This disability originates before the age of 18."

There are many types and levels of intellectual impairment. Some individuals may require support in most aspects of life, while others need help in only a few specific areas (Orelove and Sobsey, 1996).

EVALUATION

Matthew exhibits many of the characteristics associated with intellectual impairment. From observing Matthew throughout the year he has displayed speech and language barriers, impaired ability to register, make sense of and integrate information, difficulties in interacting with other students and weak fine motor skills. These disabilities...

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