2021 ASAH Conference–Incorporating STEM into the Special Needs Classroom - Harbor School

2021 ASAH Conference–Incorporating STEM into the Special Needs Classroom

Diane Gray, Supervisor of Instruction at Alpha School, and Amy Brandon, Supervisor of Instruction at Harbor School

On November 19th, 2021, Diane Gray, Supervisor of Instruction at Alpha School in Jackson, New Jersey, and Amy Brandon, Supervisor of Instruction at Harbor School located in Eatontown, New Jersey, presented at this year's 43rd annual ASAH Conference. Ms. Gray and Ms. Brandon presented a workshop on incorporating STEM into the special needs classroom.

What is STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)?

STEM is so much more than just teaching those subjects. It’s about the thought process and the higher order thinking that goes into solving problems. Incorporating STEM education into the special needs classroom can benefit the students and prepare them for their future. They will be more prepared for the challenges that await them outside the classroom environment. It can help students adapt to their environment and prepare them for a future society where they can encounter all different kinds of people and experiences. STEM allows the students to problem solve and think critically. It gets them to collaborate with each other and use hands-on activities to make predictions and find conclusions that they will apply into the real world.

Ms. Gray and Ms. Brandon discussed these benefits and shared a variety of STEM technologies and strategies to give special education teachers the confidence to incorporate STEM into their classroom. A few of the activities that were highlighted in the presentation were the Makey Makey, Ozobot, and Gravity Maze.
mackey mackey in STEM

Makey Makey

A Makey Makey is a small circuit board that turns physical objects (like a banana) into buttons for your computer. It works by creating electrical circuits. ... To complete the circuit, the student needs to hold a ground wire. This ground wire works as a return path for the electricity.

ozobot in STEM special needs classroom


Ozobot is a little toy robot that blends the physical and digital worlds — and teaches kids programming. ... Ozobot can identify lines, colors, and codes on both digital surfaces, such as an iPad, and physical surfaces, such as paper.

gravity maze in special needs STEM class

Gravity Maze

It is a gravity-powered logic maze game that builds reasoning skills and visual perception. Use the challenge cards to strategically place towers and create a path for your marble to reach the target.

lee vodfsky

Harbor School a private special education school in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Our mission at Harbor School is to help all of our special needs students with learning, social, language, behavioral, and other disabilities. Our highly skilled staff are committed daily to helping each student reach their full potential.

We would be more than happy to discuss your child's specific needs and challenges, so please call us at 732.544.9394, or request a tour at Harbor School in Eatontown, NJ. We are located just minutes off of the Garden State Parkway at exit 105 and conveniently located off of Route 35 and Route 36 in Monmouth County, NJ.

Lee Vodofsky
Principal-Harbor School, Eatontown, NJ