I have worked in District 75, New York City’s district for students with extreme special needs, for over a decade. I have worked mostly with students with emotional disorders and autism spectrum disorders. I have been trained (and trained others in) a variety of behavior management techniques. These cover important issues like establishing relationships, encouraging student investment, character/values education, room layout, organization, discipline, reward systems, gaining attention, operant conditioning, and creating positive learning environments.
I have addressed all of these over the years, and, in the hopes of not sounding arrogant, I have become fairly adept at implementing effective behavior management techniques. I have become recognizably skilled enough that I am now in a position to train teachers throughout the city in these and other matters related to special education. I say this, so that you will understand the importance of what I will now express.
I only just discovered Classcraft at the beginning of last year, and I have never before encountered an all-in-one tool/platform that so effectively implements so many of those behavior management techniques and is so immediately impactful. It helps that it is integrated into an entire game-based classroom environment and not just some added-on abstract idea of points and rewards. Of course I had to use modifications and differentiate the way different students interacted with the content/site due to the nature of my student’s disabilities. I plan to post about how Classcraft can be used to impact each of these classroom management areas along with specific ways to modify content for students with special needs in future posts, but I hope this gives anyone who is interested an overview of how and why Classcraft can be a positive influence in a special education classroom.