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Course Descriptions 

Course Title: Learning Strategies 6th and 7th grade-Intervention

Instructor: JoAnn Furnish

Course Description:

This class will be based on individual skill development needs as determined through collaborative curriculum planning, throughout the Individual Education Plan (I.E.P.) process. This process will determine the most appropriate curriculum options for your student in keeping with their needs, strengths, goals, and prior learning.  This course is geared for skill development in a range of areas including, reading, math, writing, behavior, and social skills.


Some students may require additional support, including adjustments to teaching, learning and assessment activities


Scope & Sequence By Term:


Syllabus – Ms. Furnish


Course Title: Learning Strategies     


Course Description:  Special Education Resource Room





Text/Course Materials:                                                            Technology                                         

AIMS Web: Reading, Math, Writing                                        Moby Reading:

6 Minute Fluency Reading Intervention Program                                 Moby Math:

Dolch Site Words                                                                     Moby Language:

Rewards Reading Program                                                       Moby Test Prep:

Phonics Intervention Program                                                  Reader’s Trainer

Reader’s Journey                                                           

Ekwall Shankwall Reading Comprehension Program               Jamestown Reading Comprehension Program                                                                         Model Me Kids

Step Up to Writing                                                                   Me Moves

High Performance Writing                                                       Bucket Fillers

Step Up to Spelling                                                                  Love and Logic

All About Spelling

Curriculum Based Reading Comprehension and Math                  

Oregon Focus Math/Glencoe Math

Lexile Framework for Reading

Adjusting the Image

5 Is Against The Law

Alert Program


Common Core Curriculum Standards Learned in this Course:

            This course is designed to better equip students access to the general education curriculum/core standards, in their areas of disability to make measurable annual academic progress, by utilizing instructional strategies, explicit direct instruction, assistive technology, and/or augmentative devices for each individual students skill area (s). 



            Explicit, direct instruction, strategies, and differentiation, are designed and implemented for students with Individual Education Plans (IEP).  Data is used to form fluid instructional groupings.  Instruction is focused on the essential elements of needed intervention areas as outlined in each student’s:  Eligibility, Annual IEP Goals, Service Summary, and Placement Determination.

             Research-based strategies, programs, and materials are used.  Instruction is differentiated and designed based upon the foundational academic needs as outlined in each students IEP.


Subject Standards Learned in this Course (if applicable):

            See Individual Education Plans. Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) services may include, but are not limited to and are based upon individual academic student needs.  Broad Areas Include:


Reading Skills:              

            Within a small group setting, one on one, and in varying reading ability groups, students receive specially designed instruction in reading as outlined in their annual IEP goals.  Phonemic awareness, phonics, letter-sound associations, decoding and encoding words, multisyllabic words, high-frequency words, spelling, fluency, and comprehension are systematically taught at each students reading level, as outlined in their IEP goals.  Phonemic awareness training is explicitly and intensely taught with fidelity to special education students with annual reading goals.

            The reading programs used within the resource setting, provide explicit modeling of blending and segmented reading tasks and daily practice.  A main emphasis in developing reading comprehension is using a research based, explicit instruction approach which models and teaches metacognitive and cognitive reading strategies at individual reading levels.  Students develop the skills they need to make critical academic gains to access the general education curriculum.  Simultaneously, students are making progress toward the state reading standards as they become more proficient readers.  Consultation and collaboration is done with the content area teacher to foster application of new skills to their content area assignments.


Written Language:

            Specially designed instruction in writing is taught at each student’s writing level, in a small group setting, one on one, and mixed ability levels, with an emphasis on their annual IEP goals.   One of the writing programs used within this class is The High-Performance Writing Program: A Structured Approach.  This is a three step instructional model based on educational research that supports the belief that all children can become writers (Jensen, 1993).  Students are explicitly taught the basic framework of planning, writing, and revision. In addition, students are taught explicitly the critical steps in the writing process, and are provided feedback.  Students learn to generate text and expand on a topic.  Specific instruction and practice to develop the skills each student needs to be clear and effective communicators is taught, while at the same time, they are making progress toward the writing skills of the state writing standards.  Collaborative teaming is done with each student’s language arts teacher to apply learned skills to curriculum based work samples and assessments.



            Students are explicitly taught in a small group setting, one on one, and in mixed ability groups, needed math calculations and problem solving skills, with specially designed instruction, as outlined in their IEP goals.  Students develop their ability to recognize patterns in their problem solving (comparison to similar problems and solutions) and are given opportunities to test these patterns at varying ability levels.  Skills are taught explicitly through modeling, practice, application, immediate feedback, and re-teaching.  Collaborative teaming is done with each students general education math teacher, aligning needed skills to practical application of content area standards for their grade level on curriculum based assessments and work samples. 


Behavior/Social Skills:

            Systematic behavior plans are designed and implemented for each student.  Specially designed instruction is taught to students needing behavior and social skills, in small groups and individually on an as needed basis as outlined in their IEP.  Depending on each student’s needs, one of the research based programs used in this class time is Adjusting the Image, with an emphasis on appropriate behavior skills with the learning environment and perspective taking.  Another research based program for behavior intervention is 5 Is Against the Law.  Other effective programs are Love and Logic, Bucket Filler’s, and media modeling of social skills.


Study Skills:

            An organizational system for work completion is designed around each student’s needs as outlined by their IEP.


 Grading Policies: Contingent on Individual Education Plan.



Ms. Furnish


Classroom Routines


Expected Student Behaviors

Be Respectful

Be Responsible

Be Safe




·         Respect Yourself-Come to school regularly, prepared to learn; manage your behavior, and do your best. Be proud of who you are.


·         Respect Others-Be an active learner and listener; use kind words and actions follow adult directions and clean up after yourself.  Respect others’ personal space.


·         Respect Learning-Make sure your behavior in the classroom helps support your learning and doesn’t keep others from learning.


Respect for Property –Use materials appropriately and do your best to keep materials and property in good condition.


·         You are responsible for you!


·         Follow school rules and expectations.


·         Be here! Be Ready!


·         Complete work on time, meeting the directions or expectations,  and to the best of your ability.


·         When you know you are going to be absent, please request work prior to being gone; if miss class, please talk to me at the appropriate time when you return to get information you’ve missed.


·         Ask questions, for help, or come in for extra study time when needed.



Physical Safety


·         Walk in the classroom.

·         Keep arms, legs, feet, and belongings to self.

·         Use materials appropriately.

·         Keep belongings out of aisle.

·         When seated—remember, FOUR on the FLOOR (chair legs!)


Emotional Safety


·         Be kind in words and actions.

·         We are all unique and special—everyone has the right to feel safe, comfortable, and respected in my class.


Classroom Routines

Entering the Classroom



ü  Be on time

ü  Walk

ü  Come prepared everyday with required materials: pen/pencil, planner, Homework Folder, Planner/Tracking Sheet, and SSR book—no backpacks, please.

ü  Enter quietly—use ‘inside’ voice

ü  Keep hands, objects, feet to self.


Starting The Day



ü  Put personal belongings at assigned seat

ü  Gather materials and sharpen pencil promptly.

ü  Pull out homework folder/tracking sheet

ü  Check table or board/overhead for starter activity and be ready to begin.

ü  Be seated and ready to start class with Ms. Furnish (look for cue)



Instructional Time



ü  Show good listening—facing instruction, eye contact, quiet, without distraction.

ü  When you’d like to participate in discussion—raise hand and wait to be called on.

ü  Think about your comment/question before you ask it---Is it on topic? Is it appropriate? Is it a personal/whole group point?

ü  Limit ‘distracting’ behaviors and side comments.



Independent Work Time



ü  Have materials ready.

ü  In general, work without visiting or talking.

ü  If needed, movement around the room should be quiet and not a distraction.

ü  Put away materials when finished, and move onto next activity.

ü  Work until the bell



Asking for help



ü  Raise hand-or approach help desk—while still scanning for more information to help you get started.

ü  Wait patiently and quietly—keep working if possible.

ü  Make your question specific—try to explain what has you stuck, instead of “I don’t get it.”



Taking Care of Personal Needs



ü  Try to take care of needs during passing time.

ü  Please try to wait until the end of instruction time to use your hall pass.

ü  Fill out your planner completely (date/time/destination) and raise hand, or bring it to teacher for signature.

ü  Take care of your business promptly and don’t abuse the pass opportunity.





 Returning Assignments


ü  Make sure your paper always has your first and last name on it, and period information.

ü  At the end of class, make a list of any work that needs to still be completed in your planner.

ü  At the end of the day check your planner/tracking sheet to see what you need to complete. Gather needed materials before you leave in your homework folder.

ü  Complete work and/or get parent signature by due date.

ü  Turn in completed work to basket/drawer for your class.














When to the library as a class or individually:


ü  Go directly to/from library.

ü  Keep your body/voice quiet in the hallway---classes are trying to learn!

ü  Check door for sign---if locked, knock ONCE.  If library is unavailable come directly back to class and visit again later.

ü  Enter quietly.

ü  Make sure you have spit out gum and left water in your locker.

ü  Return book to drop box and immediately begin looking for new one.

ü  Use time wisely and effectively to find a book/use computer.

ü  Do not spend more than 1-2 minutes on the search computers. 

ü  Politely ask questions if you cannot find what you are looking for.

ü  Check out books quietly and go directly to class.

ü  If no one is available to help you---leave the book on the counter with a note with your name and grade to hold it until later in the day.

ü  Exit quietly.








ü  Come prepared with YOUR personal reading selection.

ü  Reading selection should be a book you are continuously reading (should be the same each day until done) and should be a novel—not a collection of stories, reference book, drawing book, magazine, etc.  Graphic novels are acceptable.

ü  Have your reading material at your desk before class begins.

ü  Begin reading upon the bell.

ü  Read silently until signaled to stop.

ü  Limit movement/activity during SSR as to not distract others from their books.

ü  If for some reason you’ve forgotten your book (on occasion—NOT REGULARLY), quickly find a book to read off of the shelf before the bell.














Key Concepts/Standards