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Jennifer Valderrama

Itinerant Teacher (D/HH)
Volusia Pines Elementary
Ext. 41234/ Cell: (386) 801-6490

*All of the information gathered throughout the interview will prove helpful for a variety of individuals in the field. In particular, there were a few statements that I think are crucial pieces of advice and I would like to take a moment to highlight and discuss these statements in the below section. The following are statements that I believe are strong and essential to consider when promoting the success of students with MDD in and out of the classroom.*

•    “Children do not make meaning of things by themselves; they make meanings together with their communication partners.”  This quote is extremely true and I believe is relevant in the process of breaking down the barriers of communication for students with disabilities.  This quote was in response to whether or not developing language and communication for students with MDD is more challenging than for students without MDD. Her response was spot-on and she agreed that it was more challenging, but success occurs when students interact with one another. Only when this occurs, will communication and language improve and enhance.

•    “Not all strategies always work with all students. The crucial component is consistency and opportunity.” I love this statement. Jennifer is absolutely right because no student is alike and no student would truly benefit from a “cookie-cutter” curriculum or intervention. Furthermore, without consistency and opportunity, students will not be exposed to what is necessary for success in and out of the classroom.

•    “Knowledge and strategies are crucial to success in teaching students with MDD, however the way that knowledge is applied is even more useful and important.” I couldn’t agree with this statement more. It is the way that knowledge is applied in this field that can make the world of difference for students with varying disabilities. It is not simple enough to just know the information, as what you actively do with this information that will yield the best results and will assist in the success of the individual.

•    “No one person is capable of having all the answers, no matter how much training and experience one has. By allowing yourself to grow and gain knowledge from others you will become better equipped to also provide knowledge to others.” I liked how Jennifer reiterated the importance of team-planning and team collaboration. I concur with her statement wholeheartedly and truly agree that with the more knowledge you gain from others, the more you will be able to assist those individuals in the field that need you the most.