6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (2023)

"If a child cannot learn as we teach it, perhaps we should teach it as it learns." ~ Ignatius Estrada

Every student deserves a chance to learn, and one of the most important things that has happened in education is the recognition by school leaders, teachers and parents that not all students learn the same way. When a student has challenges that stand in the way of learning, it is the job of school districts to remove the obstacles and give that student what he or she needs.

At Alludo, we understand that exceptional students need exceptional education. With that in mind, here's what you need to know about special and inclusive education and six steps to help you develop one.Special Education Curriculumplano.


  1. What is special education?
  2. Special Education vs. Inclusive Education
  3. What is Special Education Curriculum Adaptation?
  4. What challenges do teachers face when adapting special education curricula?
    1. Creating activities that engage all students
    2. Balancing different IEPs
    3. Integrate special education sessions with daily activities
    4. lack of resources
  5. 6 steps to developing a special education plan
  6. take from allud

What is special education?

Before we detail the steps required to create a special education curriculum, let's define what special education is. AccordinglyUnited States Department of Education, Special education is defined like this”

Special education means specially designed classes, free to parents, to meet the special needs of a child with a disability, including:

(i) teaching in the classroom, at home, in hospitals and institutions and in other settings; It is

(Video) Small Group Rotations with Moderate/Severe Special Education Students

(ii) Physical Education.

The definition goes on to say that special education includes speech therapy services or other related services when they qualify as special education by state standards, including travel training and vocational training.

It is important to note that while special education can cover a wide range of classes and services, there is no one-size-fits-all definition because every child is unique.

Any special education curriculum must be tailored to the needs of each student and use information about their abilities. The US Department of Education says children should learn in the least restrictive environment, or LRE. In most cases, this means that children who need special education need to be placed in the same classrooms as their peers, but some children may need a different approach.

Students who qualify for special education must have an Individualized Education Program, or IEP. The IEP provides individualized instruction and the resources a student needs to learn and is made available to families at no cost. Children with IEPs work with experts to help them overcome their challenges and tap into their strengths, and family members play a key role in deciding what each child needs to be successful in the classroom.

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (1)

Special Education vs. Inclusive Education

Another term you may have heard when it comes to students with disabilities is inclusive education, so let's define it.

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (2)

Inclusive education is education that emphasizes universal education for all students. It places students with disabilities (SWDs) in age-appropriate classrooms with their peers (non-SWDs) and takes the approach that students with disabilities are just as capable as other students and learn best in a classroom setting.

(Video) Special Education: Everything You Need to Know

There wasNumerous studiesdemonstrating the pedagogical benefits for SWDs and non-SWDs of learning in an inclusive classroom. SWDs made progress in literacy, math, and social studies. Non-SWDs also saw gains in reading and math. One theory is that inclusive learning inspires teachers to experiment with new teaching techniques and strategies, including peer review and support for non-SWDs.

The main difference between special education and inclusive education is that inclusive education places all students in the same classroom, with exceptions only for occupational or speech therapy. Both are to be distinguished from integrated teaching, which takes place in the same classroom and can employ both general and special education teachers.

In addition to test scores, learning in an inclusive classroom can increase SWDs' self-esteem, give them more confidence that they can learn, and provide social opportunities they may not have if they were studying in a classroom separate from special education . While special education takes a student-centred approach, inclusive education takes an “education for all” approach.

What is Special Education Curriculum Adaptation?

Special education curriculum adaptation involves changing a general education curriculum to make it suitable for students with disabilities. In other words, the same material can be studied, but curriculum adaptation does not expect students with disabilities to achieve the same learning outcomes as other students. Any adjustments to the curriculum must be noted in the student's IEP.

before eightWays teachers can adapt curriculaServe students with disabilities:

  1. Customize the environment.Teachers can use cooperative groupings or place students in different areas of the classroom to make teaching the customized curriculum easier.
  2. Customize the presentation.Teachers can demonstrate or use different models to illustrate concepts to students with IEPs. Alternatively, they can provide students with resources that describe key concepts.
  3. Change the tempo.Students with IEPs sometimes take more time than other students to complete assignments. There are two ways to shorten assignments or give students more time to complete them.
  4. Alternate mode for materials.Some students with IEPs may need adjustments in the way they create materials. Some examples might be allowing students to dictate answers, using a computer, or cutting and pasting pictures.
  5. Adjust the materials.Teachers may also need to adjust the materials they use in class to accommodate students with IEPs. Some examples could be large printable worksheets, overlays, or worksheets with more white space for student answers.
  6. adjust rating.Student evaluations must also consider students with IEP. Teachers may allow students to demonstrate their understanding of a concept through an oral or open-book test, or by using computer programs that students can use to practice and record their results.
  7. replacement resume.Some students may not be able to follow the same general curriculum as the rest of the class. In this case, teachers cansubstitute an alternate resumematch the student's abilities.
  8. Communicate with students.Any adjustment to the curriculum must involve careful and specific communication with students. Teachers should be clear and concise when explaining each lesson and what is expected of students, remembering that SWDs may require more time to respond and simplified explanations of the lessons.

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (3)

Note that not all of these customizations are required for all students.

What challenges do teachers face when adapting special education curricula?

Every educator teaching students with disabilities faces challenges. Here are four of the most common.

(Video) 7 Steps In An IEP Process | Special Education Decoded

Creating activities that engage all students

Activities in any inclusive classroom must be designed to involve all students. Teachers should therefore be careful to address issues that may prevent students from participating or communicating. At the same time, they should look for and integrate adaptive devices and communication tools for students with IEPs.

Balancing different IEPs

As the name suggests, IEPs are individualized. Because each IEP is unique, teachers in inclusive classrooms must learn to balance multiple IEPs for the students they have with the needs of the class as a whole.

Integrate special education sessions with daily activities

Planning daily activities in an inclusive classroom can be challenging when students with disabilities need to leave the classroom to attend therapy sessions. As sessions can take place at different times of the day, planning activities requires attention to detail and flexibility.

lack of resources

One of the biggest challenges teachers face in inclusive classrooms is the lack of resources, particularly the lack of special education teachers and teacher assistants. Any district wishing to adapt curricula for students with special needs must be careful to provide teachers with the necessary resources and support to accommodate all students in the classroom.

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (4)

6 steps to developing a special education plan

Now let's look at the six steps required to develop aSpecial Education Plan.

  1. Consult IEPs and other data to determine students' academic level.The first step in creating a special education plan is to review teacher ratings, student test scores, IEPs, and other data to ensure you understand where students are learning and what they need to be successful.
  2. Keep county and state standards in mind.Next, you must determine whether you want to use class standards or academic standards when designing your plan. For example, a student might be in 6th grade (grade level) while pursuing 2nd grade (academic level) skills.
  3. Identify skills to develop with students.After reviewing the IEPs and district and state standards, the next step is to determine what skills are appropriate for students. Specific skills and topics can be referenced in the standards and you can use these as a guide to extracting skills to include in your curriculum.
  4. Integrate supplementary materials to enhance your existing resume.Sometimes a packaged curriculum contains all the necessary materials, but this is not always the case for teachers in an inclusive classroom. Once you have determined what skills you want to teach, look for supplemental materials to help students learn. You can ask other teachers what materials they have found helpful. You may also want to explore online markets such asTeachers pay teachers.
  5. Adapt the lesson plan to the needs of the students on an ongoing basis.Any educator who teaches students with disabilities learns over time. In fact, they can learn as much from their students as the students learn from them! Because of this, it is important to be flexible and adjust lesson plans as you learn.
  6. Integrate your own teaching experiences.Finally, don't be afraid to incorporate your own teaching experiences into developing and adapting your curriculum. Even teachers who are relatively new to the profession can have real-world experiences that can guide them in designing lessons and activities to suit their students.

Because a special education curriculum must address each student's IEPs and needs, the most important thing you can do is remain open and flexible, and understand that your plans may need to adjust over time.

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (5)

(Video) The IEP Process Made Simple

take from allud

Alludo specializes in providing teachers with dynamic professional learning that helps them better connect with their students. This includes special education, which is why we include many special education topics and activities in theI refer to the catalog of contents. The lessons we select can help teachers understand the purpose of special education, different learning abilities, and how to integrate adaptive tools and technology into the classroom.

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (6)6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (7)6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (8)

We are here to support school districts, administrators and educators. We believe that any district that wants to do a good job of housing students with disabilities can benefit from equipping their teachers to create effective special education curricula. It's an opportunity to encourage teachers to use their professional experience to meet students' needs and save time and stress in the classroom.

We also believe that any educator who has students with IEPs in the classroom can benefit from open communication and collaboration with other teachers. OurAlludo-Message-Boardsare designed to encourage collaboration and can be beneficial for both teachers and students

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (9)

Empower teachers in your district to develop special education curriculum plans

School districts can provide the best and most inclusive education for students with disabilities by allowing teachers to bring their expertise and passion to the development of special education curriculum plans. To do this, it is important to equip educators with the knowledge and resources needed to serve students wherever they are.

Experience personalized learning for educators of all levels with a free trial of Alludo's professional development platform. You will like:

  • Hundreds of main topics
  • Asynchronous microlearning activities
  • Timely and concrete feedback
  • Analyzes showing the impact of learning
  • Access anytime, anywhere

6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum (10)

(Video) How I Started My Own School | Story Time | Special Education Teacher


6 Steps to Developing a Special Education Curriculum? ›

Rather than a linear list of steps, our approach is a six-step cycle: analyze, research, design, curate, build, and launch. We use these steps to build affordable, dynamic, and engaging learning materials that meet the needs of both students and professors.

What are the 6 steps of curriculum development? ›

Rather than a linear list of steps, our approach is a six-step cycle: analyze, research, design, curate, build, and launch. We use these steps to build affordable, dynamic, and engaging learning materials that meet the needs of both students and professors.

What are the steps for developing a curriculum? ›

The curriculum development process can be categorized into five basic steps: 1) needs assessment, 2) the planning session, 3) content development, 4) pilot delivery and revision, and 5) the completed curriculum package. The ideal situation is to have, at a minimum, 12 - 18 months to design and develop a curriculum.

What are the 7 steps in curriculum planning? ›

7 steps to make the curriculum planning process easier
  • Determine your goals and expectations. ...
  • Choose one content area to focus on each year. ...
  • Research the content and use premade lesson plans. ...
  • Make a list of 3-5 resources for each concept. ...
  • Get to know your students. ...
  • Start with a few reusable activities.
Dec 19, 2019

What are the three curriculum design models 6 discuss? ›

What are the three models of curriculum design? There are three models of curriculum design: subject-centered, learner-centered, and problem-centered design.

What are the six domains of curriculum? ›

The framework elaborated by Bloom and his collaborators consisted of six major categories: Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation.

What are the 5 components of the cycle of curriculum planning? ›

5.6: A Closer Look at the Curriculum Planning Cycle
  • Step 1: Observation – Looking and Listening.
  • Step 2: Documentation – Recording Evidence and Gathering Artifacts.
  • Step 3: Interpretation – Analyzing Observation Data. Step 4 Reflection: Planning for the Next Step.
  • Step 5: Implementation.
Jan 4, 2021

What are the steps in curriculum development PDF? ›

The six steps are:
  • Performing a needs assessment and writing a rationale. statement.
  • Determining and prioritising content.
  • Writing goals and objectives.
  • Selecting teaching/educational strategies.
  • Implementation of the curriculum.
  • Evaluation and application of lessons learnt.

What are the components of curriculum? ›

From a UDL perspective, we think of four components to a curriculum: the goals, the methods, the materials, and the assessment. They are very closely interrelated in that the goal is the primary thing with which a lesson begins and the others line up to achieve that goal.

What are the elements of curriculum? ›

Any curriculum consists of several components: objectives, attitudes, time, students and teachers, needs analysis, classroom activities, materials, study skills, language skills, vocabulary, grammar and assessment.

What are the five 5 basic components of a curriculum? ›

The Five Elements of the Curriculum That Matters Framework
  • Practices. Practices are used by students to apply an idea, a belief, or a method to construct understanding. ...
  • Deep Thinking. ...
  • Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) ...
  • Civic Engagement. ...
  • Equity.
Jul 27, 2022

What are the four C's of curriculum planning? ›

The 4Cs: Creativity, Critical Thinking, Communication and Collaboration in Schools.

What are the 5 curriculum guidelines? ›

QR Code
  • Guideline 1: Teach to the Next Text. ...
  • Guideline 2: Provide for Broad Extensive Reading. ...
  • Guideline 3: Support Narrow Reading of Academic Texts. ...
  • Guideline 4: Focus on Academic Vocabulary. ...
  • Guideline 5: Use and Produce Both Expository and Narrative Texts. ...
  • Conclusion.

What are the three C's of curriculum design? ›

The three major concepts of this model -- Context, Content, and Conduct -- relate to one or more of the accreditation standards.

What are the 7 stages of curriculum development PDF? ›

Stages of curriculum development
  • Diagnosing needs.
  • Formulating specific objectives.
  • Selecting content.
  • Organising content.
  • Selecting learning experience.
  • Organising learning experience.
  • Evaluating.
  • Checking for balance and sequence.
Oct 16, 2016

What is the best model of curriculum development? ›

The Tyler Model is the definitive prototype of curriculum development in the scientific approach, developed by Ralph Tyler in the 1940s.

What are the 7 domains of curriculum? ›

The student is viewed Holistically through Seven Domains: spiritual, mental, social, emotional, creative, natural, and physical.

What are the 6 domains of the framework for effective teaching? ›

Stronge identifies six qualities of effective teaching: professional knowledge, instructional planning, instructional delivery, assessment, learning environment, and professionalism.

What are the five 5 teaching domains? ›

Design, development, utilization, management and evaluation are the five basic domains of the field. These terms refer to both areas of the knowledge base and to functions performed by professionals in the field. Each domain of Instructional Technology includes a body of knowledge based on both research and experience.

What are the 4 A's in curriculum planning? ›

The 4As of adult learning: Activity, Analysis, Abstraction, and Application is illustrated in Figure 6-1. The constructivist approach to teaching asserts that a Learner gains and builds knowledge through experience. It recognizes that life experiences are rich resources for continued learning.

When planning a curriculum What should a teacher consider first? ›

Effective teachers carefully consider what content and skills they will teach, how the material will be organized, how students will learn, and what will constitute evidence of student learning.

What is curriculum development model? ›

Refers to process of utilizing sets of concepts to achieve both quantity and quality education through a guided learning experiences. Published in Chapter: Curriculum Development Models for Quality Educational System.

What is a curriculum model? ›

Curriculum model is a broad term referring to the guide used to write curriculum guides, or the documents used in education to determine specific aspects of teaching, such as subject, time frame, and manner of instruction. There are two long-standing models of curriculum: the process model and the product model.

What are the five major factors that influence curriculum development and planning? ›

There are five (5) factors that affect curriculum design. These are (1) political, (2)social, (3) economic, (4) environmental and (5) technological.

What is the curriculum planning? ›

The process concerned with making decisions about what to learn, why, and how to organize the teaching and learning process taking into account existing curriculum requirements and the resources available.

Which components of the curriculum is most important? ›

Learning objectives are a critical element of the curriculum. Learning objectives guide instructors to formulate assessment procedures, learning activities, and teaching strategies.

What are the features of a good curriculum? ›

Some useful indicators of a quality curriculum include:
  • Relevance.
  • Consistency.
  • Practicality.
  • Effectiveness.
  • Sustainability.
Nov 16, 2022

What are the three important elements of curriculum implementation? ›

Regardless of the definition or approach, curriculum can be organized into three major components: objectives, content or subject matter, and learning experiences.

What is the primary basis in developing a curriculum? ›

Philosophical Basis

At the foundation of every curriculum, there is the educational philosophy of people directly involved in the process of curriculum development. Philosophy determines the goal of life and education tries to achieve that goal.

What is an example of a curriculum plan? ›

Here are some examples of curriculum planning:

# Yearly planning – a scheme of work # Daily planning – a teacher's planner # Individual lesson planning – an individual lesson plan.

What are four basic factors of an effective curriculum? ›

An effective and student-driven curriculum has the following characteristics:
  • Adapts to an Evolving World. A successful curriculum is never a one-time project. ...
  • Contains Research-based Teaching Techniques. ...
  • Encourages Collaboration. ...
  • Meets the Needs of the Students. ...
  • Establishes Quantifiable Objectives.
May 26, 2022

What are 4 types of curriculum approach? ›

Approaches to Curriculum Development
  • Subject-centred approach.
  • Broadfields approach.
  • Social Problems approach.
  • Learner-centred approach.

What is Tyler model of curriculum? ›

The Tyler curriculum model is a curriculum design approach focusing on four core principles: Determining objectives, identifying experiences, organizing experiences, and evaluating effectiveness. To begin the process, school officials need to determine the specific learning objectives that they want students to meet.

What is the 3 main characteristics of a good curriculum? ›

It should provide sufficient scope for the cultivation of unique skills, interest, attitudes and appreciations. It should be psychologically sound. It should take into account the theories of learning relevant to the fields of study. As such, a broad range of possible learning styles must also be considered.

What are the two main curriculum development models? ›

Two major curriculum models are the Taba and Tyler methods. Each emphasizes teacher planning and assessment. The Tyler model focuses on four questions to shape curriculum, and the Taba model is more focused on teacher input. Both models are reflected in most classrooms today.

What are the 5 elements of the curriculum? ›

The Five Elements of the Curriculum That Matters Framework
  • Practices. Practices are used by students to apply an idea, a belief, or a method to construct understanding. ...
  • Deep Thinking. ...
  • Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) ...
  • Civic Engagement. ...
  • Equity.
Jul 27, 2022

What are the 4 elements of curriculum? ›

Curriculum is made up of elements which their appropriate coordination would guarantee the success of a curriculum. There is no consensus between the experts on elements of curriculum, but the most four common points of view concerning this issue are: objective, content, method and evaluation.

What are the five approaches to curriculum design and development? ›

Next, five unique approaches to lesson planning are explored: behaviorist, constructivist, aesthetic, ecological, and integrated social–emotional learning. Each chapter provides the rationale for the approach, its theoretical background, practical applications, and critiques and considerations.

What are the 7 common elements of an integrated curriculum? ›

The areas of integration included: 1) art, mathematics, and reading; 2) writing across the curriculum; 3) history, science, and mathematics; 4) history and literature; 5) integrated humanities; 6) health and reading; 7) areas of mathematics; 8) social studies, health, and the arts; 9) physical education, the arts, ...

What are the 3 important components of a successful curriculum? ›

There are five key elements to successful curriculum design:
  • Clear Purpose.
  • Strong Beliefs.
  • Big Ideas.
  • Common, Timely, and Purposeful Assessments.
  • Collaborative Design, Review, and Annual Revisions.
May 10, 2022

What are the four models of curriculum development? ›

There are at least 4 curriculum development models that have been recognized and often used; the Tyler model, Taba model, Oliva model, and Beaucham model. The model names are based on the names of curriculum developers.


1. Examples of Differentiated Strategies used in Teaching
(Guro Ako Channel)
2. Special Education research-based curriculum... it's not optional!
(Special Education Inner Circle)
3. Lesson Planning: Development 101
(Teachings in Education)
4. Number Concept Activities for Children | Special Education (@Help4Special )
(Help 4 Special)
5. Making Curriculum Modifications in Minutes
6. Praxis Special Education Practice 5354, 5543, 5545 | 6 Principles of IDEA | Kathleen Jasper
(Kathleen Jasper)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Rueben Jacobs

Last Updated: 05/25/2023

Views: 6487

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (77 voted)

Reviews: 84% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Rueben Jacobs

Birthday: 1999-03-14

Address: 951 Caterina Walk, Schambergerside, CA 67667-0896

Phone: +6881806848632

Job: Internal Education Planner

Hobby: Candle making, Cabaret, Poi, Gambling, Rock climbing, Wood carving, Computer programming

Introduction: My name is Rueben Jacobs, I am a cooperative, beautiful, kind, comfortable, glamorous, open, magnificent person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.