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    Para duties
    By Michelle

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    One thing I find helpful is to sit down with the para and make a list of EVERYTHING that needs to be done in the classroom. Make a table with 3 columns: Tasks, Teacher, Para. Include everything from cleaning the tables after art class to lesson plans, etc. After you've listed all the tasks that need to be completed, go back and check off Teacher, Para or both for each item. Some items need a little more discussion. For example, I write lesson plans, but my paras are expected to follow them and are welcome to suggest ideas if they want to try something special. My paras know that my lesson plans are due 3 weeks in advance. If they have a special art project, etc that they want to do, I have to have it in time to include it in the lesson plans. It's a nice way to make sure he understands that you expect your lead to be followed but that you value his input. I am adamant with my paras that their suggestions are always welcome but that no changes are made without discussing them with me. Make sure you assign your para some things he really enjoys doing and that you take over at least one or two of the less desireable jobs. One thing I do is to take over diaper changes at least one time every three days. I expect my aides to cheerfully approach any task I set out for them and I think my willingness to do the "dirty" jobs shows that we're all in this together.


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