Understanding Sensory Disabilities in Students with Special Needs

Students with sensory disability cannot access learning without specific supports and strategies. In this presentation, participants will learn how sensory disabilities impact development and learning. Participants will leave with greater with a better understanding of how to meet the needs of these unique learners and understand what supports can be best utilized for building supportive learning environments and activities. 

1. Participants will identify various sensory disabilities 
2. Participants will understand the role that the sensory system plays in development 
3. Participants will gain knowledge of resources and support for this population.

Includes 1.5 BCBA CEUs

Audience: Special Educators, therapists, and support staff 

Meet the instructor:

Melody Zagami Furze is an Education Specialist for the Professional Development and Training team at the Haring Center for Inclusive Education. She received her doctoral degree in Special Education from the University of Northern Colorado in 2021. She earned her Master’s in Special Education from the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She also consults as part of the brain-based visual impairment research and development team for the Anchor Center for Blind Children in Denver, Colorado. Prior to moving to Washington state, Melody worked previously at the Perkins School for the Blind, The New Mexico School for the Blind, and school districts in Vermont, Massachusetts, and Washington. 

Melody’s work focuses on learning strategies and techniques for children with sensory impairments. Her expertise is program development for young learners with diverse neurological profiles, coaching, consultation, collaboration with early childhood teams, and early intervention and preschool support. She does consultation and research for children with cognitive and developmental impairment, visual processing disorders, and children with severe and complex needs. Her previous experiences include home visits and early intervention, assessment development for children with multiple impairments, and brain imaging research to practice. The majority of Melody’s work intersects with clinical manifestations of atypical neurological development in early childhood populations and developing learning environments for inclusive practice. 

If you have questions or comments, please contact the Haring Center Professional Development and Training team at haringpd@uw.edu.