EXCEPTIONAL PARENT (EP) MAGAZINE HONORS SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS
“AN ABILITY TO CONNECT ”
LAURA WISINSKI is one of the most adaptable, fun-loving, hard-working teachers around. She teaches a Life Skills Support room for high school students at Elizabeth Lee Black School in Erie, PA. She is wonderful, kind and supportive, and makes the lessons exciting, accessible and engaging. Laura uses total technology like touch screen computers, iPads and the TAPit as tools for interactive learning and a station for daily greetings, exercises and the like. She addresses basic core subjects by generating her own lessons and hands-on-materials in science, civics, daily living and the like, to use on these devices. Her lessons are customized to be multi-modal and enhance the students’ tactile, auditory and visuals systems.
Laura works to increase time on task, cause and effect awareness and basic social skills with her students. She runs a program addressing vocational skills and can be seen most afternoons outside her room modeling and training how to wash windows, shelf and clean books, run a vacuum, load a washer or dryer and much more.
Laura took on a two-year professional development plan to work with all our teachers to address linking the standards to our programming and for writing IEP objectives/goals. She sets effective instructional goals, uses community resources wisely, and is a peer mentor to new staff. This year she has taken on team teaching with a MDS classroom teacher and is working to incorporate age appropriate lessons on the five senses into their weekly assignments. She is a take- charge type of person and will continue to support her students and staff in all she does.
– Submitted by Cynthia Ann Priester OTR/L MS, Educational Program Coordinator, Barber National Institute, Erie, PA