GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA) – Preschoolers in Greenville are getting the opportunity to learn in a whole new way.
The Meyer Center is bringing students with special needs and their neurotypical peers into the same classroom.
It’s a pilot program called “Inclusion Works” that has been used in classrooms across the country.
The center is hoping to bring students together to challenge them in new ways and change the way they interact with each other.
“I’m interested to see some of our children with diagnosed disabilities and social skill problems or language barriers performing better because they’re imitating their peers and just learning through playing with their peers like they wouldn’t learn from us,” said preschool special education teacher Eleanor Moser. “It will also allow those neurotypical children to kind of be advocates and learn how to be advocates for those students who maybe can’t stick up for themselves. It’ll be a great teaching tool for those children to learn about diversity.”
These students will learn from the “Big Day For Pre-K” curriculum, which is similar to what’s taught in Greenville County schools.
Teachers will adjust the material for students with special needs and adjust their teaching styles to accommodate the entire class.
“I’m going to have to pull in the social skills and teaching students that everybody is different and that is okay, and making sure that my typical students are made to be as independent as possible but also helping make them be better helpers towards those students who may be struggling,” Moser said.
By the end of the year, teachers hope students will walk away with something just as important as a good education.
“I’m hoping to see friendships made, friendships you wouldn’t maybe normally see in a regular environment where these children are separated away from each other,” Moser said.
The Meyer Center has two preschool classes that are part of the pilot program.
They will take a look at how each student grows individually to determine whether or not to continue the program next year.