Working With Families Introduction







Before a young person ever becomes a student in a classroom, he or she is first a member of a family.

workign with families welcomeAs you may already have experienced, families are an important part of our work with students. Traditional or non-traditional, biological, foster, or adoptive, families provide vital support to students with disabilities, throughout their lives as well as through Transition. The goal of this site is to explore some of the unique strengths and challenges encountered when working with families and to provide a framework for supporting collaboration, overcoming barriers, and increasing mutual understanding in parent-professional partnerships.

You must finish all required elements of the module in order for it to be “complete”. Completed modules will be reflected in your portfolio. All questions and activities are required unless labeled as “optional”.


Learning Objectives

By the end of this online training, you will be able to:

Session 1

  • Describe how family systems behave like a mobile.
  • State why understanding family systems is important to transition planning.
  • Define equilibrium, as it relates to the family systems perspective.
  • Explain why working with the whole family is important to transition planning.
  • List and describe the three dimensions of Family Characteristics.
  • Describe family interactions, cohesion, and adaptability.
  • List eight family functions.
  • State how family function priorities change when families experience stress.
  • Define family life cycle.
  • Describe how family life cycles may differ when a family has a student with a disability.

Session 2

  • Demonstrate understanding of each element of the family systems perspective by choosing a course of action, based on transition-based case examples.

Session 3

  • List the three areas of the wilderness analogy.
  • Relate the three areas to a transition based-case example.
  • State how the wilderness analogy applies to your practice.