This week on prac I was involved with one on one work with a student with a cognitive disability in a hospitality class. While the majority of the class was working on an activity with the class teacher, I was asked to sit with the student and work through seperate worksheets. At first, this seemed like it would be beneficial for this student as she has trouble understanding content and, with personalised worksheets, would better be able to reach goals. When I was given th worksheets however, I was shocked to discover that she was to work through find a words related to the subject. I failed to understand how this helped her at all as all she was doing was looking for letters to make up a word she does not understand in relation to content she has not even learned. In my opinion, it seemed as though the class teacher had given up on the student and assumed that she would never understand content and therefore was given recreation mal activities rather than educational material.
I felt that the work was almost insulting to the intelligence of the student; just because she was at a lower level than the other students it did not in any way mean she was incapable of understanding information. She just needed a simpler explanation of the same content rather than pointless activities. While working with the student, I could tell that she did not find much benefit from the activity either as she could not concentrate on it as it was not stimulating. Even I struggled to concentrate on the find a word as I felt like my time and knowledge was being wasted when I could be teaching the student something useful rather than helping her look for words. Due to this experience, the importance of catering for students with different needs has become very clear to me. I will ensure I set doable yet challenging tasks for students so that they reach learning goals and learn new skills.