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Childhood/Special Education (dual program)

Elementary school is a critical time to instill a love of learning. Great elementary school teachers — in special and regular education classrooms alike — ignite an interest in children of all abilities and prepare them for academic success and a lifetime of learning.

Why Choose Dual Childhood/Special

Teachers play a crucial role in the lives of developing children. They support their educational needs, but, equally as important, elementary school teachers serve as mentors, advocates, and guides for their students. Becoming a childhood education teacher (grades 1-6) is one of the most challenging but rewarding professions you can pursue because it gives you the ability to impact lives for generations.

Manhattan’s state approved Childhood Education program provides students with the academic and practical skills to succeed in the classroom. The program leads to certification in teaching all subjects for grades 1–6 in a regular education elementary school classroom. Upon declaring your major, you will choose an academic concentration from these options:

The Curriculum

The dual childhood/special education program has three components:

  • core course requirements in the liberal arts and sciences
  • studies in your chosen academic concentration
  • pedagogy: including all education courses, field experiences, and student teaching in the classroom

Each term, often beginning in freshman year, students will be in a classroom as an observer under the direction of the cooperating teacher. During senior year, students are required to fulfill one full semester of student teaching fieldwork in addition to their academic coursework. During the student teaching experience, students are encouraged to assume more responsibility planning and leading daily lessons and assisting their cooperating teachers in classroom management, organization, and grading.

Our campus is located in the Bronx, with fieldwork access to students in the New York City public school system. Students are placed in the most culturally and economically diverse school districts. In addition, students may be placed in local parochial and private schools.

What Will You Learn?

You will practice the art and science of teaching. You will learn how to plan an appropriate and effective curriculum for grades 1-6, including how to adapt those plans for special education or at-risk students.

You will graduate from this program with an ability to understand the core principles of childhood/special education, including:

  • current issues in education
  • the process of becoming an educator
  • content knowledge
  • child development
  • instructional strategies
  • assessment strategies
  • data driven decision making
  • historical and philosophical foundations of education
  • implications of the multicultural nature of schools
  • differentiating instruction for special needs populations
  • the role of technology in the teaching and learning process

See degree requirements

What Will You Do?

Our dual childhood/special education program has a well-earned reputation for producing excellent educators who teach across a broad spectrum of schools in both urban and suburban districts.