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Hi, Veronica- I am also a Special Ed teacher-MD (GR 3-5). Are you using any specific curriculum..I use PECS in my classroom for non-verbal students but I also use many visuals to aid in language/communication. Our Speech and Language Therapists also work with us. I have found that my student respond to games on the Smart Board (Lakeshore makes some very nice games) or you can use ABCYA.com (free). I also use many PCI games that encourage speech. I have my children learn basic sight words and write in a journal (or dictate) and then try to draw. Just some things-hope this helps.!
I'm not sure about the teacher's college model but there are a number of wonderful Common Core aligned lessons on various sites, and many of these lessons were designed with special education students in mind, especially the ones on UDL Exchange. You may want to check them out.
http://commoncore.americaachieves.org/ Register as a new user and you can view videos of master teachers teaching the Core, download editable lesson plans that are Common Core aligned, and view lists of reputable web sites that will help you align your practice to the Core.
http://www.sharemylesson.com/ There are close to 300,000 lessons on this site, and many are exemplar lessons for the Common Core.
http://udlexchange.cast.org/home This site has hundreds of lessons that are both Common Core aligned and designed using the principles of Universal Design for Learning, which allows all students to access rigorous curriculum.
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