The goal of academic support at Schechter Westchester is to enable students to fulfill their potential. Learning specialists, trained in special education, work closely with:
- Students who can benefit from support outside of the classroom
- Students who need increasingly challenging material
- Teachers who embrace strategies of differentiation to meet the needs of their students
- Parents who want to better understand the learning needs of their children
CAS works with students to develop the eight general components of executive functions that impact school performance. These components are:
- Working memory and recall (holding facts in mind while manipulating information; accessing facts stored in long-term memory)
- Activation, arousal, and effort (getting started; paying attention; finishing work)
- Controlling emotions (ability to tolerate frustration; thinking and planning before acting or speaking)
- Internalizing language (using "self-talk" to control one's behavior and direct future actions)
- Complex problem-solving (taking an issue apart, analyzing the pieces, reconstituting and organizing it into new ideas)
- Shifting, inhibiting (changing activities, stopping existing activity, stopping and thinking before acting or speaking)
- Organizing/planning ahead (organizing time, assignments, materials, and possessions)
- Monitoring (self-monitoring and prompting)
CAS models, teaches, and practices strategies that best exploit the three types of memory (working memory, long-term memory, short-term memory). Our goal is to improve students’ skills in acquiring information and being able to demonstrate knowledge.
Reading development continues throughout secondary education and beyond. For many students, the fact that reading is a compilation of many skills and a necessary part of all classes makes classroom engagement a particular challenge. CAS teaches strategies for actively engaging in the text and developing skills to become a critical reader.
Writing requires a student to have well-developed reading skills and to be linguistically and cognitively organized. Writing well also demands an understanding of text structure and the ability to combine content and structure. Students in CAS have the opportunity to engage with the writing process in a more detailed way than they might in the classroom and to have more guided practice and greater individualized support with the organization and articulation of ideas.
Often students learn a strategy or skill in one course and there it stays. We emphasize the ability to generalize (applying a rule or pattern to a new context or setting) as well as overlearning, (learning to the point of automaticity), Students are guided by learning specialists as they learn these crucial skills.
There are instances in which students in a rigorous, dual-curriculum school need more time on task, as in pre-teaching and/or re-teaching, in order to be most successful. At times learning specialists pre-teach material prior to it being addressed in the classroom or extend instruction so that students are able to be successful with challenging tasks.
Meet the Team
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