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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Thank you for visiting the Isbell Academy's webpage!
We have quite a bit of info to share with you.

@1. Why should I consider the Isbell Academy for my child?
The Isbell Acadeemy assesses the student to determine where he or she is academically, sociallly, etc. We then build upon their knowledge through classroom andteaching styles modifications to meet the learning styles and multiple intelligences of the student. The goal of the academy is to ensure the students have all the basics skills needed to be successful in the classroom. A struggling student is usually an indication of a missing piece of information needed by the student to accomplish an assignmet. Our job is to help the student identify the missing pieces quickly to realize success.

JMIA offers a loving and non-threatening environment in which the student is encouraged to participate fully in the classroom without fear of someone laughing at a wrong answer. A wrong answer is an opportunity for growth. The student can explore his/her answer versus the rigth answer, thereby exercising analytical skills.

Some students do not perform well in a traditional classroom. JMIA has a unique learning envrionment. We adjust the teaching style to accommodate the student's learning style. The class size is small, affording more time to attend to the student's needs.

@2. What are Learning Styles?
The three main learning styles are:
visual
auditory
kinaesthetic/tactile
No-one uses one of the styles exclusively, and there is usually significant overlap in learning styles.

Visual Learners
Visual learners relate most effectively to written information, notes, diagrams and pictures. Typically they will be unhappy with a presentation where they are unable to take detailed notes - to an extent information does not exist for a visual learner unless it has been seen written down. This is why some visual learners will take notes even when they have printed course notes on the desk in front of them. Visual learners will tend to be most effective in written communication, symbol manipulation etc. Visual learners make up around 65% of the population.

Auditory Learners
Auditory learners relate most effectively to the spoken word. They will tend to listen to a lecture, and then take notes afterwards, or rely on printed notes. Often information written down will have little meaning until it has been heard - it may help auditory learners to read written information out loud. Auditory learners may be sophisticated speakers, and may specialise effectively in subjects like law or politics. Auditory learners make up about 30% of the population.

Kinaesthetic Learners
Kinaesthetic Learners learn effectively through touch and movement and space, and learn skills by imitation and practice. Predominantly kinaesthetic learners can appear slow, in that information is normally not presented in a style that suits their learning methods. Kinaesthetic learners make up around 5% of the population.

@3. What are Multiple Intelligences?
The theory of multiple intelligences was developed in 1983 by Dr. Howard Gardner, professor of education at Harvard University. It suggests that the traditional notion of intelligence, based on I.Q. testing, is far too limited. Instead, Dr. Gardner proposes eight different intelligences to account for a broader range of human potential in children and adults.

These intelligences are:
Linguistic intelligence ("word smart"):
Logical-mathematical intelligence ("number/reasoning smart")
Spatial intelligence ("picture smart")
Bodily-Kinesthetic intelligence ("body smart")
Musical intelligence ("music smart")
Interpersonal intelligence ("people smart")
Intrapersonal intelligence ("self smart")
Naturalist intelligence ("nature smart")

Dr. Gardner says that our schools and culture focus most of their attention on linguistic and logical-mathematical intelligence. We esteem the highly articulate or logical people of our culture. However, Dr. Gardner says that we should also place equal attention on individuals who show gifts in the other intelligences: the artists, architects, musicians, naturalists, designers, dancers, therapists, entrepreneurs, and others who enrich the world in which we live. Unfortunately, many children who have these gifts dont receive much reinforcement for them in school. Many of these kids, in fact, end up being labeled "learning disabled," "ADD (attention deficit disorder)," or simply underachievers, when their unique ways of thinking and learning arent addressed by a heavily linguistic or logical-mathematical classroom.
See the website for more info - http://www.thomasarmstrong.com/multiple_intelligences.htm.

@4. Where can I find the academic requirements for my child? I want to help my student succeed, but have no clue as to what he/she should know in each grade.
Visit the ALABAMA STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION website for the academic requirements, etc.: http://www.alsde.edu/html/home.asp
This website is a wealth of information.
Click on SECTIONS.
Click on CURRICULUM & INSTRUCTION
Click on PUBLICATIONS
Click on the individual subject COURSES OF STUDY

@5. What is an Individual Educational Plan?
The Individual Educational Plan
There are two federal laws that impact Special Education. The first is the Education for All Handicapped Children Act (EHCA), Public Law 94 142 (1975). The second is the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Public Law 101 476 (1992).

These two acts define what departments of special education must do to educate students in their programs. The program that must be created is referred to in the federal regulations as an Individual Educational Plan (I.E.P.).

All districts have different approaches when creating an I.E.P., and the paperwork that must be done to document the student's progress.
The I.E.P. must include:

a. A statement of the student's present levels of educational performance. A Special Education student must be objectively tested on a regular basis to ascertain what his current level of academic functioning is. This information is reviewed during the Individual Educational Plan meeting.

b. A statement of the annual goals, including short- term instructional objectives. When the Individual Educational Plan meeting is held specific, measurable instructional goals are set for each class the student is taking in Special Education.

c. A statement of the specific Special Education and related services to be provided to the child, and the extent to which the child will be able to participate in regular education programs. Some Special Education students need extra services from the school district such as: Speech Therapy, Physical Therapy, Counseling, or other specific services. The projected dates for the initiation and duration of services need to be discussed and documented. The student may be able to participate in regular education programs. If so, modifications to those programs need to be discussed and finalized if they are necessary.
Copyright 2000 Jay Leach; http://www.behaviordisorders.net