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Finding Printable Language Arts Worksheets for Special Needs Students

written by: Margo Dill • edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom • updated: 9/11/2012

If you teach students with special needs, you may need a variety of language arts worksheets and lessons to reach students at a variety of levels. Here are some places to find worksheets and tips for how to keep students on track while using them.

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    Sites for Printable Worksheets

    If you need printable language arts worksheets for special needs students, then check out these sites for free ones:

    • On this site, language arts skills and objectives are divided into numerous categories such as Dolch sight words, grammar, letters and sounds, and parts of speech. When you click on a category, you are taken to another menu that lists specific skills you teach. For example, click on "letters and sounds", and then click on "Identify, color the vowel sounds: bird." Then you'll see a printable language arts for special needs students where they have to read a word, decide what vowel sound is in the word, and then color the spot a corresponding color.
    • ABC Teach: ABC Teach offers several different categories for free worksheets. If you are looking for grammar printables, click on grammar sheets and then click on the skills: nouns, verbs, or other parts of speech. Other language arts categories are phonics, spelling, writing, word walls, words from words, word family, and literacy centers.
    • School Express: School Express is set up in a similar manner as Teach-nology and ABC Teach. On the language arts page, you can choose from different categories of skills. Once you choose one area such as classifying, compound words, or nouns, you will have several printable language arts worksheets for special needs students to select from.
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    Using Printable Worksheets

    With a classroom of students with special needs, you may have three or four students working on different language arts skills at the same time. These free printable language arts worksheets for special needs students are perfect because you can download them and print them off as your students progress at their own rate. Here are a few tips for using these worksheets with students:

    • Read the directions carefully yourself before giving worksheets to your students. Some directions on worksheets are actually more complicated for students to follow than the skill you want them to work on. For example, with many phonics worksheets, the directions are to color certain sounds certain colors. Some students with special needs will have trouble managing and remembering four of five different colors and the corresponding sound. They may know the word has a long e sound, but they may color the object the wrong color because of the directions. Modify directions and observe students to make sure this doesn't happen in your classroom.
    • Set up a system in your classroom when you are working on printable language arts worksheets for special needs students. For example, students know during this time that they need their supply box on their desks, they put their name on their papers, they try to read the directions on their own, and they raise their hand if they don't understand what to do. With a simple system in place, this seat work time will go smoothly, and students will benefit from the routine.

    Free printables can be great practice for students with special needs as long as you choose them carefully and work at your students' current level.

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