Course dates will be listed for this term as soon as they are available.
Fall 2021 VESi Course Offerings
Advanced Classroom Management: Children as Change Agents
Focuses on cognitive and cognitive-behavioral interventions with an emphasis on teaching students how to change and manage their own behavior. Since previous knowledge and understanding of traditional behavioral concepts and strategies is required, it is strongly recommended that you take an introductory behavior management course to learn the basic terms and concepts of behavior management. Primary audience is professionals (educators, instructional assistants, school psychologists, and counselors) serving children and youth.
Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Information and Interventions
Develop better understanding and intervention strategies to facilitate positive change, history, accepted assessment methods to identify students with the disorder, and various methods, medications, and strategies currently used. For situations where a student needs services beyond what you can provide, learn referral process for getting help. Reference materials include list of resources for both teachers and parents who would like more help or information.
Autism & Asperger’s Disorders: Information & Effective Interventions
Describes autism and Asperger’s Disorder, including characteristics, associated learning styles, communication weaknesses, and various intervention strategies. Helps you make sense out of why individuals with autism spectrum disorders act the way they do, and what you can do to enhance more appropriate behavior. Also lists resources for educators, related service personnel, and parents who want more help or information.
Behavior is Language: Strategies for Managing Disruptive Behavior
Gain new perspective on student behavior and effective tools to facilitate positive change. Provides developmental framework to understand what students are trying to tell you through the “language” of their behavior. Learn behavioral techniques and intervention strategies that remediate disruptive behaviors, reduce power struggles while increasing classroom control, reduce your workload, and help prevent burn out.
Child Abuse: Working with Abused & Neglected Children
Designed to help you identify and effectively teach students affected by child abuse and/or neglect. Teaches you to recognize the signs of physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, physical neglect, and emotional neglect in students. Discusses specific factors that exist in families who abuse or neglect their children with an emphasis on understanding the special learning needs of the abused or neglected child and how to meet those needs in the regular classroom. Working with parents and community agencies is also emphasized.
Drugs & Alcohol in Schools: Understanding Substance Use & Abuse
Gain more comprehensive understanding of alcohol, drugs, and influences in classroom. Provides contextual framework for understanding what students may be experiencing either through their own substance use or from the substance use of persons close to them and basic historical perspective of substance use along with the biological, psychological, and social factors that comprise the disease of addiction.
Educational Assessment: Assessing Student Learning
This course is designed to further develop the conceptual and technical skills required by teachers to help them identify their educational goals, and implement meaningful instructional strategies for effective learning by students with special needs. The focus of this course will therefore be on assessment for instructional programming. The course will outline procedures for designing or selecting, administering and interpreting, a variety of informal assessment measures typically used in schools. The presentation of assessment information in an acceptable format to parents and teachers will also be addressed.
English Language Learner: Evaluation & Assessment
English Language Learner: Evaluation & Assessment was written to help teachers understand concepts and terms related to evaluating and assessing students whose first language is not English. This course discusses high-quality assessment and the scope of assessments, including initial placement, annual assessments, and exit assessments. This course ends with a discussion of classroom assessments, including accommodations for those who need language assistance.
English Language Learner: Language Acquisition
Language Acquisition was written to help teachers understand concepts and terms related to educating students whose first language is not English. This course discusses developmental theories and how they apply to English language learners. The focus of this course is on the process of second language acquisition and the role of the classroom teacher. Included in this course is information about the legal obligations of schools and teachers to provide services and about the types of programs schools might provide. Included is information on communicating with parents/guardians.
English Language Learner: Linguistics
English Language Learner: Linguistics was written to help teachers understand concepts and terms related to educating students whose first language is not English. This course discusses how to understand theoretical foundations of linguistics and how to apply the knowledge and skills in linguistics in ELL classrooms and content classrooms.
English Language Learners: Methods & Materials
Information provided in this course has been divided into four chapters, which should be completed in the order in which they are presented in the program. Once you have completed these four chapters, you should have a better understanding of the methods and materials for teaching English language learners. You are strongly encouraged to read additional journal articles, books, and research materials outside the course material to gain a better understanding of current issues related to educating students who are learning English as a second language.
Harassment, Bullying and Cyber-Intimidation in Schools
Harassment, Bullying & Cyber-Intimidation in Schools will discuss definitions and the personal, social, and legal ramifications associated with sexual harassment, bullying, and cyber-intimidation. The course will address what we know about these troubling areas. We will then explore preventative strategies as well as how school staff can address these issues when they occur. A clear understanding of what constitutes harassment and the harmful effects of harassment on people and institutions is essential to providing a safe and inclusive school environment for all.
Inclusion: Working with Special Needs Students in the Mainstream Classroom
Designed to help special and general educators gain better understanding of inclusion, a current educational reform movement advocating educating students with disabilities in general education classrooms. Defines key concepts and terms, identifies and describes federal legislature and court cases, and lists and describes federal definition of students entitled to special services. Identifies roles and responsibilities of educators in providing special services to students educated in inclusive classrooms.
Infant and Toddler Mental Health
This course will cover: infant and toddler mental health; strategies to promote positive relationships with children and their families; role identity as a child care provider, educator, and early childhood professional; research-based information on child development, attachment, temperament, and curriculum; helpful resources information about infant and toddler mental health.
Learning Disabilities: Practical Information for the Classroom Teacher
Describes diverse theoretical approaches to handling learning disabilities in the classroom. Taught by Dr. Bob Pillay and lays the foundation for sensitive, appropriate assessment and evaluation of students. Covers program planning and implementation stresses the importance of a close, positive partnership with parents or alternative caregivers, and explores methods for ensuring that the home/school axis is effective and meaningful. Also covers major trends and unresolved issues in the field of learning disabilities.
Try D.I.? Planning and Preparing a Differentiated Instruction Program
Try DI! is designed to provide you an opportunity to learn about an instructional framework, Differentiated Instruction (DI), aimed at creating supportive learning environments for diverse learning populations. Students will be presented a method for self-assessment of the extent to which their current instructional approach reflects the perspective, principles, and practices of the DI approach. The course reflects an approach that aligns the principles of DI with the practices of DI. The concept of a “theory of action” will also be provided within a DI context.
The course has also been designed to introduce students to a range of strategies associated with a DI approach. Strategies included in this course have been selected on the basis that they are effective in the widest possible range of educational K-12 settings. This course follows Why DI?: An Introduction to Differentiated Instruction, which addressed the What, Why, and Who of a classroom that reflects a DI approach. The focus of Try DI!: Planning & Preparing a Differentiated Instruction Program is on the When, Where, and How of the DI approach.
Response to Intervention: Practical Information for the Classroom Teacher
As educators, you have probably heard the term RTI, or Response to Intervention. RTI is a process schools can and should use to help students who are struggling with academics or behavior. Even though RTI is primarily linked to special education and the early identification of learning problems, RTI is not just for students in special education. RTI is for all students and is based on the premise that a student might be struggling due to instruction or the curriculum in the past, or in the current classroom. Every teacher will have students who are struggling and whether it’s short term or long term, RTI is a valuable tool. So, welcome to the class on Response to Intervention where you will learn what RTI is and how to use it in your classroom.
Six Traits of Writing Model: Teaching and Assessing
This course discusses why writing is important and why teachers should include writing as often as possible in all content areas. The course also includes practical applications for assessing and teaching writing, including teaching students how to self-assess their own writing. The first chapter of this course discusses why teaching writing is important and give you an introduction to the Six Traits of Writing Model. Through chapters 2, 3, and 4 we will discuss the elements of the Six Traits of Writing Model. Throughout those elements, we will look at practical ways to use this model in your classroom.
Talented & Gifted: Working with High Achievers
Provides information on history of the exceptional in relation to education, current law, and accepted methods for referral, assessment, and identification of these students. Covers major program models, methods of differentiating instruction to meet the rate and level of learning, an understanding of ways to meet the affective needs of those students identified, and lists resources for teachers and parents who would like more information.
Teaching Diversity: Influences & Issues in the Classroom
Designed to give you the knowledge, tools and dispositions to effectively facilitate a diverse classroom and to understand and identify differences in approaches to learning and performance, including different learning styles and ways in which students demonstrate learning. Emphasizes understanding how student learning is influenced by individual experiences, talents, disabilities, gender, language, culture, family and community values. Challenges you to apply knowledge of the richness of contributions from our diverse society to your teaching field.
Teaching Elementary Math Conceptually: A New Paradigm
Teaching Elementary Math Conceptually is designed to expand your methodology for teaching Mathematics. The course will explore an innovative teaching model that incorporates strategies for teaching concepts, constructively and contextually. The goal is for you to gain a deeper understanding of the underlying concepts of various math topics and explore the principles of teaching those concepts to learners. This course will focus on the topics of number sense, basic operations, and fractions.
Teaching Secondary Math Conceptually: Meeting Mathematics Standards
This course explores an instructional methodology that incorporates strategies for teaching concepts, constructively, and contextually. The goal is for you to gain a deeper understanding of the underlying concepts of various math topics and explore the principles of teaching those concepts to learners. The course also explores teaching methodologies that support many federal and state standards. This course focuses on the topics of integers, fractions, factoring, and functions.
Traumatized Child: Effects of Stress & Trauma on Learning
Designed to help you recognize the signs, identify and effectively teach students affected by stress, trauma, and/or violence. Discusses specific factors that exist in families and communities where stress and violence are common with an emphasis on special learning needs of the affected student and how to meet his/her needs in the regular classroom. Working with parents and community agencies is also emphasized.
Understanding Aggression: Coping with Aggressive Behavior in the Classroom
Designed to help school personnel become more aware of the causes of aggression and ways to evaluate and intervene before the aggression turns to violence in the schools. Includes topics on violence, aggression in the classroom, youth gangs, aggression in sports and on television, how drugs and alcohol play a role in aggression and violence, and “hot spots” that tend to breed aggression and violence. This course also speaks about aggression in our communities in the realms of driving, dating, sports, television, and music, and how these issues are dealt with in modern society.
Understanding and Implementing Common Core Standards
This course, Understanding & Implementing Common Core Standards, has been divided into four chapters. The organization of the course covers the rationale for and design of the Common Core State Standards, the “Common Core Mindset” practitioners need for successful implementation, and what specific actions can be taken for deeper implementation across settings.
Violence in Schools: Identification, Prevention, Intervention
Develop better understanding of school violence and increase intervention strategies. Provides overview of violence and motivational purposes behind aggression. Investigates correlation and impact of the media, community, and family upon violence. Learn identification and intervention approaches to working with out-of-control behaviors. Receive information about the national resources available for both parents and teachers.
Why D.I.? Introduction to Differentiated Instruction
In this course you will learn what is meant by Differentiated Instruction (DI) and the common myths associated with creating the differentiated classroom. Discussions address legal, theoretical and pedagogical foundations in the field of education that support the utilization of differentiated instructional practices and principles.
Course dates will be listed for this term as soon as they are available.