A Case Study of Reverse Inclusion in an Early Childhood Classroom

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A CASE STUDY OF REVERSE INCLUSION IN AN EARLY CHILDHOOD CLASSROOM

Michele Hanlon
Texas State University
CI 5390 Spring 2007
Dr. Nancy Langerock

Abstract
This is a case study of a preschool reverse inclusion program implemented at an elementary school in central Texas. This preschool class consists of 11 children with special needs ranging in severity. There are 4 typically developing students enrolled full-time in the class for a class total of 15 students. They are between the ages of three and five years old. There are two full-time lead teachers, two assistants, and one extended day teacher. This study consisted of parent surveys, teacher interviews, and student observations. The observations were done during non-structured times during the school day such as recess and centers, and were conducted three days per week for one month. The results were typically positive in that parents and teachers saw improvement in social behavior and language development of the students with special needs. The only negative result was that some of the typically developing children picked up some undesirable behavior by mimicking the behavior of the children with special needs. However, this only occurred with the younger students. Both the parents of the typically developing students and the students with special needs reported a high satisfaction of all aspects of the program. The teachers also reported high satisfaction with the program, and saw improvement in the social behavior of the students with special needs.

Table of Contents
I. Title Page
II, Abstract…………………………………………………………………………..…..1 III. Table of Contents.........................................................................................................2 IV. Introduction and Literature Review………………………………………..………..3 V. Methodology……………………………………………………………………..….6 a. Research Questions………………………………………………………..…..6 b. Operational Definitions…………………………………………….…………6 c. Population………………………………………………………………….….7 d. Procedures…………………………………………………………..…………7 e. Instrumentation…………………………………………………….………….8 VI. Display of Data………………………………………………………………..…....9 VII. Conclusion and Implications………………………………………………………13 VIII. References…………………………………………………………………………16 IX. Addendum1………………………………………………………………………..18 .X. Addendum2………………………………………………………………….........19 XI. Addendum2a………………………………………………………………...…….20 XII. Addendum3……………………………………………………………………….21

Introduction and Literature Review
As dictated by IDEA students identified as having disabilities must be educated in the least restrictive environment. However, according to Smith & Rapport (1999), only about half of preschoolers with disabilities are being educated in inclusive settings. Studies recognize that preschool years are an ideal time for children to begin to learn to respect differences between people, and appreciate the contributions each individual makes (Brown, 2001). Reverse inclusion has been proposed as a viable option to achieve this appreciation. Reverse inclusion consists of integrating several students without disabilities into a class that has several or all students with disabilities (Hardin & Hardin, 2002). These students then work alongside each other with the typically developing students serving as role models. Research on the attitudes and beliefs of inclusion practices from parents of both disabled and non-disabled preschool children indicate both parents and preschool providers are in favor of an inclusive preschool program and the benefits it could provide their children (Rafferty & Boettcher, 2000). However, the parents and providers thought this might not be beneficial for severely disabled or emotionally disturbed children. Raffetty, Piscitelli, and Boettcher (2003) conducted research, which examined the development language ability and social competence of...
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