For reluctant writers, introduce novel or unexpected materials and supports. Try old typewriters, novelty or colored pencils, voice-activated software or story starters.

This website is dedicated to promoting inclusive schooling and exploring positive ways of supporting students with autism and other disabilities. Most of my work involves collaborating with schools to create environments, lessons, and experiences that are inclusive, respectful, and accessible for all learners.


Speaker Spotlight: Katie McKnight

Posted on March 25, 2014 in News

Want to learn some improv skills for the inclusive classroom? Need ideas for cool new apps? Want your vocabulary lessons to have a bit more zip? If you answered “yes” to any of these, you need to come to Illinois Includes and stop into Katie McKnight’s sessions.

Dr. Katie McKnight is an author, educator and consultant. Her career in education began as a high school English teacher in the Chicago Public School system more than 20 years ago. Today, she serves as a professor of secondary education at National Louis University and an onsite professional development consultant for the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

Katie is passionate about creating curricula that engage all students in the regular education classroom. And she is completely committed to the development, sharing, and promotion of ideas and strategies that develop literacy skills in adolescent students so that they can grow to be active, creative adults.

Dr. McKnight regularly publishes in professional journals and is the author of many books including one of my favorite resources, The Second City Guide to Improv in the Classroom.

The Second City Guide to Improv in the Classroom

Most people know The Second City as an innovative school for improvisation that has turned out leading talents such as Alan Arkin, Bill Murray, Stephen Colbert, and Tina Fey. This groundbreaking company has also trained thousands of educators and students through its Improvisation for Creative Pedagogy program, which uses improv exercises to teach a wide variety of content areas, and boost skills that are crucial for student learning: listening, teamwork, communication, idea-generation, vocabulary, and more.

She has a research article on using improvisation to teach literacy, as well as this useful clip on the same topic

Want to learn more about Katie? Check out this YouTube video about teaching the classics in inclusive classrooms (great introduction to her book on this topic).

If you want even more of the same, come on over to Rosemont, IL on May 7th to learn from Dr. McKnight and many other enthusiastic inclusive schooling advocates. We would love to have you join us at Illinois Includes!

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