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A resource teacher is a specialized educator that focuses on helping children with physical or educational learning difficulties to develop their reading and writing skills. They must be organized, patient, good at motivating students, extremely understanding of people's individual needs and able to accept people's differences.
This category can include teachers who are specialized in educating students who are visually or audibly impaired, and those teachers who concentrate on life skills and basic academic processes to the mentally impaired. Most resource teachers instruct students at elementary or middle school, however some specialize in working with infants or toddlers.
Children with disabilities often require some kind of modified education in order to keep up with the workload of a specific subject, for example, mathematics or comprehension exercise. Resource teachers do not tend to help individual children on individual subjects, they are more likely to work with small groups of children on a wide range of academic subjects. They do not do the children's homework for them or help them, but they will assist with any specific problems that they may encounter. Resource teachers are primarily there to ensure that students that may find the course more difficult or may feel overburdened by the school's workload get all the extra help they require.
The majority of resource teachers work with children that have mild or moderate disabilities by using existing traditional teaching methods that have been modified from the general education curriculum to meet each student's individual needs. Part of their job will also be to set individual and realistic targets for each child with the help of the child's regular teacher. They will also be responsible for monitoring, recording and assessing each child's progress, which will also be done alongside their normal teacher. On important days such as parent-teacher conferences, both teachers will meet with the child's parents so that they are able to fully understand their child's educational needs and how they are developing.
Some schools may have special individual rooms called Resource Rooms, which are like study halls that students who are having trouble in classes that contain computers, books, reference books and other educational aids. Each of these rooms will be fitted with technology that can help students with learning difficulties, such as computers with synthesized speech or audiotapes to assist children.
Sometimes students will be sent to the resource room to take an exam or test if they have been absent or sick at the time of the exam. Alternatively, if a student needs to take a break from the class or another student they can retire to the Resource Room and continue their work away from any distractions without any severe discipline that is found in a normal classroom situation.
Resource teachers are primarily involved in developing the student's behavioral, social and academic skills, and also helping them to progress emotional and teaching them to interact effectively in everyday social situations. Another important aspect of the job is to begin to prepare students for daily working life after they graduate. This can include career counseling or teaching them life skills such as budgeting.