Devang ties his shoelaces, looks for last time in the mirror, takes his school bag and walks down the stairs. His mom watches him from her balcony and waves good bye as she watches him disappear into the crowd. He walks down the narrow lane that is populated. There are shops on either side of the street. He stops at sweets shop and smiles at the shop keeper. He does not speak but the shop keeper understands his gestures and has known him for many years. He hands him one sweet without charging him for the same. Nibbling on the sweet he reaches the school bus stop and waits for the bus.
But he is five minutes too late. Not finding Devang at the bus stop, the bus driver had assumed that he won’t be coming to school.
Devang does not know that he has missed his school bus. He has no concept of time and he waits at the bus stop for five hours till the bus comes back after school hours and bus driver spot him at the bus stop and asks him to go back home. He is a special child. He suffers from Microcephaly, which is a medical condition in which the circumference of the head is smaller than normal because the brain has not developed properly or has stopped growing.
Both teacher and the mother did not worry about Devang because they were not aware that he was at the bus stop for five hours. Both did not know that he had missed his school bus.
This problem can be avoided if there is proper interaction between the parents and the class teacher. The teacher of a special child should be aware of the child’s problem and should find out why the child is absent from school before the school prayer assembly, preferably by making a phone call to the parents to ask the reason of his absence on that particular day.
Keeping and maintaining parent-teacher relationship is the first step towards progress of the child. Parents of the special child should be involved in child’s activities. All the activities that are carried out in school should be continued at home. A proper record of the child’s activities could be maintained by both, parents and the teacher, so that there is a follow-up. If the child is doing certain activity at school but is sitting idle at home, then the progress is slow. Most of the confrontations between parents and teachers result from lack of communication from school to home.
The parents can be informed about the classroom expectations for student’s behavior and work product. They can be informed about the daily schedules at school, what the management and discipline strategies used on each child and what progress has been shown by the child. It is important to keep the parent informed about the upcoming events, units and due dates. They can also be informed about the skills taught and the learning strategies used in the classrooms. This kind of information involves parents and keeps them updated about the child’s activities at school. If the parents have an email, teachers could regularly post information and keep them updated. If the child shows some unusual behavior at school, parents should be informed immediately so that problem can be detected and immediate attention could be given to child.
Interaction is very important between parents and teachers. Sometimes parents have one point of view while teacher have a different approach but to maintain a common harmony is what that determines the progress of the interaction. To create a positive interaction with the parents, it is important that teacher does not wait for the call but makes call regularly to build up the relationship. Talking in positive way, they can get the information from parents about the behavior of the child at home and his relationship with other family members, his likes and dislike, his preferences in his food habits, his relations with neighbors and all other details. The parents should also be given the liberty of communicating with the teacher when the need arises. When the parents know that the teacher has interest in their child she is likely to be more co-operative in positive discussions.
Knowing the child closely helps the teacher understand him better and this in the long run helps her in organizing the lesson plan for teaching him in the creative manner.