The ChoiceMaker Curriculum is designed to teach students the self-determination skills needed to be successful in adult life.
The ChoiceMaker Curriculum consists of three strands: (1) Choosing Goals, (2) Expressing Goals, and (3) Taking Action. Each strand addresses teaching objectives in three transition areas: Education, Employment, and Personal. Click here to download the ChoiceMaker Self-Determination Curriculum Transition Matrix (.pdf). The matrix can assist in guiding the use of the ChoiceMaker Curriculum for transition planning.
ChoiceMaker lessons are designed to be infused into existing school coursework programs. Because the Choosing Goals and Taking Action modules can be used with a variety of content, they can be used in either general education or special education classrooms. The Self-Directed IEP module is designed for use with students receiving special education services.
The different ChoiceMaker lesson modules may be used together or separately in whatever order best matches your educational needs. Again, the Self-Directed IEP is the only module designed for use only by students receiving special education services; all the other modules are designed for use by all students.
Many educators choose to start with the Self-Directed IEP module, then continue with the other modules. For example, once the student begins to participate in IEP meetings, the various Choosing Goals modules provide content and assessment information for the student to use at future meetings. The Choosing Employment Goals package may also be used with students to help develop their vocational plan as part of the school's school-to-work effort. The Taking Action lessons are used to teach students a process to facilitate attainment of their IEP goals as well as other educational, employment, personal, and community participation goals and objectives.
Each of the lesson modules includes the teacher's manual and student workbook. Choosing Employment Goals and Choosing Education Goals also include reproducibles that align with the lessons. There are free of charge videos depicting students utilizing methods taught in the ChoiceMaker Curriculum embedded in each specific module. Click the links in the menu on the left to access the ChoiceMaker Curriculum modules.
ME! Lessons for Teaching Self-Awareness & Self-Advocacy
Developed by Penny Cantley, Karen Little, & James Martin
Self-determination skills, such as self-advocacy and self-awareness, have the potential to increase successful secondary and postsecondary outcomes for students with disabilities.
The ME! Lessons consist of ten units developed for the purpose of teaching critical transition knowledge and skills to high school students with disabilities. The units include:
- Getting Started
- Learning About Special Education
- Understanding My Individualized Education Program
- Understanding My Rights and Responsibilities
- Improving My Communication Skills
- Increasing My Self-Awareness
- Advocating For My Needs in High School
- Advocating For My Needs After High School
- Developing My Resources
- Assessing My Progress & Portfolio
Each unit begins with an overview of the unit lessons and the PASS objectives addressed in the unit. The lessons include detailed step-by-step lesson plans, pencil-paper activities, discussion and group activities. Some lessons include PowerPoint presentations that may be added to enhance lesson presentation. A student portfolio called the ME! Book is a major component of the curriculum. Each student creates and adds to their ME! Book as the units are completed. Once students have completed all lessons, their ME! Book will include the following completed items:
- Self-Awareness Project
- Worksheets and activities from each lesson
- Summary of Performance
- Secondary and postsecondary resources to use during the transition process
- Additional student-identified resources
Pulos' Career Assessment & Exploration Tool Kit (P-CAET)
Joshua M. Pulos, Ph.D., BCBA, LBA-VA
James Madison University
*Note: created as a Ph.D. student at The University of Oklahoma Zarrow Institute
The Pulos' Career Awareness and Exploration Toolkit (P-CAET) is designed to help students with disabilities build awareness and exploration of different career pathways leading to entry-level jobs. Based on John Holland's structural theory of career development, Holland (Luft, 2012) suggested an individual's personality can be divided into six types corresponding with a variety of overarching thematic work environments: (a) Realistic, (b) Investigative, (c) Artistic, (d) Social, (e) Enterprising, and (f) Conventional. When aggregated, these are known as Holland's Occupational Codes (e.g., RSC). Individuals tend to have dominant personality patterns which fit into two or three common types. By utilizing Holland's career development theory, the P-CAET can be used to determine an individual's occupational matches. All occupations within the P-CAET require low levels of education (i.e., no special training to a high school diploma or GED) to be successful; thus, all students with disabilities, ages 14 to 21, including those with significant support needs, can use the P-CAET. Many students have already made up their mind as it relates to postsecondary employment; therefore, the P-CAET may support those choices or offer a new lens of occupational discovery students may not be aware, prompting career exploration.
Transition Bell Ringers
Developed by Mindy E. Lingo Ph.D. & Adapted by Zarrow Center Staff
The Transition Bell Ringers are based upon key concept taught within the Me! Lessons and designed to be short journaling activities. These can be completed independently during the first few minutes of class once a week throughout the school year. The bell ringers focus on the areas of self-awareness, disability awareness, goal setting, and students gaining the knowledge to lead their IEPs. There are two versions of the bell ringers, one for secondary students and one for elementary age students or secondary students working on alternate achievement standards. Also, we provided real life transitional math bell ringers aligned with personal financial literacy objectives. All three versions of bell ringers include approximately 50 slides, not all of the slides have to be used, and can be downloaded and adapted for teacher’s preferences.
Tying the Knot
Transition skills and academic skills can be taught simultaneously. With this tool, we aligned Oklahoma English Language Arts Standards and research-identified skills students need to obtain employment or participate in further education after high school. The activities and annual transition goals are arranged on a continuum to accommodate students with the least support needs to students with more support needs.
We intend this tool to be used as a guide to generate additional annual transition goals using core standards. The examples given may be modified to better suit the students you teach. The measurable statements should bemodified to meet the needs of individual students.
Whose Future Is It Anyway? 2nd Edition
A Student-Directed Transition Planning Process
Whose Future Is It Anyway? helps prepare students for their IEP meetings and gain self-determination skills through six sections that contain 36 lesson sessions.
This lesson package comes with a Coach's Guide (.pdf) that outlines the lessons, how to teach them, the roles of the students and teachers, as well as expected outcomes.
Dr. Michael Wehmeyer of the University of Kansas provided permission to make this package available for no charge (Whose Future Is It Anyway? Permission Letters (.doc).