Scholarly article on topic 'The Effect of Building Up Self-esteem Training on Students’ Social and Academic Skills 2014'

The Effect of Building Up Self-esteem Training on Students’ Social and Academic Skills 2014 Academic research paper on "Educational sciences"

CC BY-NC-ND
0
0
Share paper
OECD Field of science
Keywords
{"Self- esteem" / "Integrated Environments" / inclusion / "Social Skills" / "Academic Achievement ;"}

Abstract of research paper on Educational sciences, author of scientific article — Badriyah El-Daw, Hiba Hammoud

Abstract This study aimed at analyzing the effect of training a sample (N =116, ages: 7-9) of regular and special needs students in “Building Up Self-Esteem Program” on their academic and social skills in an integrated environment. The sample was randomly selected from three Lebanese schools and divided into three groups: 2 experimental groups (68 students) were trained in the year 2014 in Robert Reasoner program: “Building -up Self- esteem” and- 1 control group (48 students). Pre and post –training scores were collected from the sample on Cooper Smith Self-esteem Scale (CSES), Conner's Social skills subscale CTRS-F, and academic performance. Results revealed significant differences on these scales on the benefit of the experimental group. Findings revealed that the training had contributed in decreasing the average of Conner's subscales for the participants with special needs as compared to the members of the control group who showed an increase in these elements. Moreover, findings showed that the integration of the students with special needs with regular students had helped in decreasing the behavior problems (as it shows through the decrease of their post averages on Conner's subscales and the increase in the grade average of self- esteem and scholar achievement as compared to the control group. Results revealed the teachers’ self-evaluation can have a positive impact on the students’ self-esteem. Future recommendations and researches were discussed.

Academic research paper on topic "The Effect of Building Up Self-esteem Training on Students’ Social and Academic Skills 2014"

CrossMark

Available online at www.sciencedirect.com

ScienceDirect

Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 190 (2015) 146 - 155

2nd GLOBAL CONFERENCE on PSYCHOLOGY RESEARCHES, 28-29, November 2014

The Effect of Building Up Self-Esteem Training on Students' Social

and Academic Skills 2014

Badriyah EL-Dawa*, Hiba Hammouda

aLebanese University, Faculty of Education-Deanship, Beirut,Lebanon

Abstract

This study aimed at analyzing the effect of training a sample (N =116, ages: 7-9) of regular and special needs students in "Building Up Self-Esteem Program" on their academic and social skills in an integrated environment. The sample was randomly selected from three Lebanese schools and divided into three groups: 2 experimental groups (68 students) were trained in the year 2014 in Robert Reasoner program: "Building -up Self- esteem" and- 1 control group (48 students). Pre and post -training scores were collected from the sample on Cooper Smith Self- esteem Scale (CSES), Conner's Social skills subscale CTRS-F, and academic performance. Results revealed significant differences on these scales on the benefit of the experimental group. Findings revealed that the training had contributed in decreasing the averag e of Conner's subscales for the participants with special needs as compared to the members of the control group who showed an increase in these elements. Moreover, findings showed that the integration of the students with special needs with regular students had helped in decreasing the behavior problems (as it shows through the decrease of their post averages on Conner's subscales and the increase in the grade average of self- esteem and scholar achievement as compared to the control group. Results revealed the teachers' self-evaluation can have a positive impact on the students' self-esteem. Future recommendations and researches were discussed.

© 2015 TheAuthors.Publishedby ElsevierLtd.This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.Org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Peer-review under responsibility of Academic World Research and Education Center. Keywords: Self- esteem; Integrated Environments; inclusion; Social Skills; Academic Achievement;

1. Introduction

The concept of education and teaching differs from what it has been during the past decades. After the teaching-learning process, the student's role was to receive the information and store them in his memory; today he became a key and basic element of this process. Such process as Ashukker (2010) stated, is now based on the self-motives of the student and his special needs, which made the teaching process an individual one emerging from the motives and

*Badriyah EL-Daw Tel.: 0096170262712 E-mail address:badriyadaw@yahoo.com;hiba_Hammoud@yahoo.com

1877-0428 © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Peer-review under responsibility of Academic World Research and Education Center. doi:10.1016/j.sbspro.2015.04.929

the needs of the individual, rather than being a collective one. A conclusion confirmed by the modern psychology theory revealed that all human beings have a specific need they seek to satisfy to control their behaviors. Among the essential needs the students, in general, and those with special needs, in particular, seek especially to satisfy the need to self-esteem.

The students with special needs enrolled in the Lebanese public schools suffer from a low level of self-esteem, which weighs on their social skills and their academic achievement within a total absence of the school inclusion mechanism. They also suffer from the minimum requirement of care and attention at the psychological, social and academic level, which endanger the future of this marginalized category and maximize the risk of reclusion, dropouts and negative views towards this category (El Daw, 2008). This study will highlight three linked variables that directly affect the performance of special needs students who are enrolled in inclusive public schools: self-esteem, social skills, and type of inclusion. In order to see if there is a relationship between self-esteem and academic skills in inclusive setting, first the concept of self-esteem will be explained, then definition of inclusion and its related advantages and disadvantages will be reviewed.

Nomenclature

A CSEI: Coopersmith Self- esteem Inventory

B CTRS: Conner's Teacher Rating Scale

C F-(subscale) CTRS: RL, social problems

D Academic Performance

E Full Inclusion

F Partial Integration

G Resource Room

H Special Education

2. Literature Review

2.1 Self esteem

Self-esteem has been defined simply as a "belief and self-confidence in your own ability and value" (Cambridge Advanced Dictionary, 2004). Self-esteem is how you feel toward yourself. Your feelings about yourself come from convictions about yourself as a capable, competent person having worth. Feeling capable is having self-confidence, viewing yourself as able to cope effectively with life's challenges. A feeling of worth means having self-respect, which comes as a result of living up to your own standards of values and potential (Mc Farla, 1988). Also, self-esteem is an evaluation the individual puts for himself and others whom he considers to be important. According to Younisi (2012). The individual here tends to care about the opinion of those who have a big influence on him and those who can be called as important in his life, and they are the parents, the teachers and the peers). For Bandura (1977, as cited by Bandura 1989), Self-efficacy is defined as the "Self-assessment of ability to master a task or achieve mastery over a specific situation or set of circumstances". Self-efficacy has been found to academically predict performance. In this study, the operational definition of self-esteem is measured by Coopersmith Self Esteem Inventory (CSEI; translated by Yakoub and Antoun, 2004). Individuals who have high self-esteem usually demonstrate a high degree of acceptance of themselves and others. These individuals recognize their skills and strengths and feel safe and secure within their social relationships and environment..Self-esteem affects social skills, the more the student feels self-esteem, the more he will enjoy social skills to satisfy his basic needs.

Learners with special needs, who are in mainstream schools, are deemed to be at risk for low self-esteem associated with the significant difficulties they experience in mainstream schools, both in terms of academic performance and peer acceptance (Martinez & Semrud-Clikeman, 2004; Gans, Kenny, Ghany, 2003; as cited by Ntshangase, Mdikana and Cronk, 2008). These learners, due to their histories of repeated failure at school, are likely to feel as though academic outcomes are beyond their control, thus perceiving themselves as less competent than their peers. There has been widespread interest in researching the self-perceptions of children and adolescents with special needs due to the concern that academic failure or difficulty may affect global self-concept; as well as the concern about the self-perpetuating cycle of failure (Heyman, 1990 as cited by Ntshangase, Mdikana and Cronk, 2008).

2.2 Social skills and academic achievement

Social skills are "socially accepted habits and behaviors taught to the child to the extent of mastering and possessing through social interaction that is considered a participation process between children via daily life situations and should help him in building successful relationships with the others in his psychological surrounding (Haddad & Aziadat, 2012, p.345). Self-esteem and social skills affect the academic achievement through which the future of the student will be determined. He will either consider himself able to satisfy his aspirations or have resort to dropout as his second choice. The academic achievement is of great importance in the life of the individual and his is not only about passing consecutive academic phases and having qualified degrees, but it has very important aspects in his life being the inevitable path to choose the type of study and the profession, and therefore to define the social role that the individual will play, as well as the social rank he will achieve, in addition to the way he sees himself, his feeling of success and the level of his ambitions.

Academic achievement as Al Hamaoui (2010) mentioned makes the individual feels the excellence and success, improves self-confidence and raises ambition level, whereas success makes the individual feels proud and confident of his potentials and abilities, and that he is able to succeed and make achievement, and that such impact is a mutual one. The need to self-actualization is the top priorities of human needs and it is materialized on the education level through the need of the learner to obtain a high social rank. Accordingly, the cause of suffering from some difficulties at school is a complex issue that doesn't exist in the learner himself, but in neglecting the individual differences among learners. As viewed by the (El Daw, 2008), the teaching process may help in developing a successful self-concept among all children, including those with special needs. Thus, the importance of the inclusive school that takes into consideration individual differences and meets the needs of regular students and those with special needs in an ordinary class.

2.3 Inclusion

In the past, when the term special education was used, a special place (a room or school) came to mind. This notion is rapidly changing. Special education is no longer limited to a specific location. It has been established that all children—even children with autism, severe disabilities, and emotional or behavioural disabilities—learn best in classroom settings with their general education peers (Causton-Theoharis & Theoharis, 2008; Peterson & Hittie, 2002). The law has deemed that special education services are portable services that can be brought directly to individual children (Roncker &Walter, 1983; as cited by Causton -Teoharis & Kasa,2008). When students with disabilities are educated primarily in general education settings, this is called inclusive education. Many definitions of inclusion exist.

2.4. What Does the Research Say About Inclusion?

Inclusion is not just a "feel-good" experience supported by positive anecdotes and stories—it is an educational practice that is well-supported by research. Studies show that inclusion benefits not only the student with special needs, but the entire school community as well. Research supports the following benefits of inclusion: Inclusion benefits all students in the classroom: Research in the field of special education has consistently shown the benefit of educating students with and without disabilities together (Baker, Wang and Wahlberg 1994; Fisher, Pumpian, & Sax, 2000; McDonnell, Thorson, Disher, Mathot- Buckner, 2001; Waldron and McLeskey, 1998). Also, Inclusion increases the rate of learning. Both the Individualized education Plan, IEP goals and academic learning in the general education curriculum are achieved at a greater rate when students are educated in an inclusive classroom (Causton-Theoharis & Theoharis, 2008).

This new approach to education (inclusion) comes with several challenges which behoove the school authorities and teachers to ensure that meaningful and intentional engagement of regular and students with special needs is done in a way that provides learning opportunities/activities and ensures that the environment is conducive to all students. Weiner (2003) is of the view that the teachers' moral obligation to be committed to expecting all students meet high standard of achievement and to provide an excellent learning environment is paramount in inclusive schools. Inclusion should also ensure equal participation of all learners in a differentiated curriculum, and intra-curricular activities. Implementation of instructional strategies and methods that increase regular and special needs students' participation and progress in the differentiated curriculum is very essential for success in an inclusive setting.

2.5 Learning Theories Related to Inclusion

Social Learning Theory with so many factors that would seem to make inclusive classrooms unproductive, what learning theories might support the idea? Within the school setting, all students are expected to learn academic concepts as well as behavioral skills. Because both of these areas are often times potential barriers for disabled students, they can develop low self-esteem issues which hinder them socially. "These learners, due to their histories of repeated failure at school, are likely to feel as though academic outcomes are beyond their control, thus perceiving themselves as less competent than their peers" (Ntshangase, Mdikana, & Cronk, 2008). It is important that academic content and social skills are addressed within the classroom. Albert Bandura (1989) developed the social learning theory which states that learning, both cognitive and behavioral, takes place through the observation, modeling, and imitation of others.

3. Background of the Problem

Implementing the inclusion criteria is still recent in Lebanon and was adopted by some private and public schools but not all Lebanese schools for many reasons, varying from financial, technical or social one. Few numbers of schools have a specific number of specialists and educational programs in the field of specialized education. Another issue is related to the inclusion principle, since a huge number of principals and parents refuse to accept disabled learners with special needs in the ordinary classes, as a result they can be kept out of the general educational system and thus out of their society. Such coercive isolation (their presence in specialized education center) results in psychological (low self-esteem), social (lack in social skills) and educational problems (low level of academic achievement (El Daw, 2008). Some studies showed that learners with special needs tend to face difficulties in social situations based on being refused by their peers and others. This worsens things and makes the teaching mission of this category of learners an educational issue by excellence, considering that they suffer from a lack of self-esteem and social skills.

4. Purpose of the study

The aim of the research is to investigate the effect of training regular and students with special needs in Building Up Self-Esteem Program on their self-esteem, academic achievement and social skills.

5. Research Questions

The following questions will determine the problematic of the research:

1. To what extent does training regular and students with special needs in "Building self-esteem" program will lead to an increase in their self-esteem, academic achievement and social skills?

2. How do special needs pupils in inclusive and non-inclusive classrooms settings differ in their self- esteem, academic achievement, and social skills?

3. How do teachers evaluate themselves in inclusive classrooms?

6. Hypotheses

1. Implementing self-esteem program activities will contribute in improving self-esteem of the experiment group students more than the control group students.

2. The intervention of self-esteem program activities will improve social skills and academic achievement of the student in the experimental group more than those in the control one.

3. Building up self-esteem program will enhance the teachers' self-esteem as measured by the Robert Reasoner's teachers' evaluation scale in schools adopting inclusion approach which leads to the improvement of self-esteem among regular and special needs students.

7. Method

An Experimental design was conducted to train a 116 regular and non-regular students ( with special needs) in "Building- up Self -Esteem program" for Robert Reasoner (2000), the translated Arabic version of the "Building up Self -Esteem program" prepared by Al - Thahran Private School, in the year 2013-2014 and over 3 months (Jan-March.2014). This material is basically a series of exercise sheets with pictures and questions arranged to allow students to verbalize their thoughts and feelings towards self and others and to share it with the classmates and teachers as well.

7.1 Subjects

The population of the study consisted116 students. The subjects in this study represented a low range of the social economic continuum in Lebanon and were diagnosed by a specialized team (N=116 students males and females, age level ranges between 6-9 years) were selected from three official Lebanese schools and assigned into three groups: 68 students were divided into two experimental groups: group1- Zokak El Blat Official school (11 students diagnosed with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders, slow learners, memory and speech problems were trained), group 2- The Second Official School for Girls (8 students were selected for training and diagnosed with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders- ADHD, slow learners and writing problems). Whereas, the number of students in the control group, The Irshad Official School is 48 regular and non-regular students (16 students were selected and were diagnosed with learning difficulties, slow learners, visually impaired, low achievers and educational delay) .

7.2 Training

Subjects were trained by a female graduate student at the Lebanese University, Faculty of Education, pursuing her master degree in special education. Extensive training on the implementation of the treatment was practiced for one week. After the one-week training period, the trainer did the piloting on a selected student in order to follow further practice of the tasks and instructions before the actual training for the start of the study. Selected activities sheets related to the five components of self-esteem: feeling of security, feeling of identity, feeling of belonging, feeling of goal, and feeling of self-actualization. Students were reinforced after each session (gifts, sweets, & computer games, music, and songs). Training was carried on by the trainer (experimenter) who coordinated with the school administration and teachers to schedule training sessions so that the student's class-work was not jeopardized. Pre and post training scores using the Arabic version of Coopersmith Self - Esteem Inventory (constructed by Yakoub and Antoun , 2004) were collected to validate the positive treatment effect on the two dependent variables: academic achievement as measured by the students' scholastic averages , and the social skills as measured by Conner's sub scale (F) indicating the social problems rated by the homeroom teachers inside and outside the classroom setting in the three integrated public schools mentioned before ( since very few schools adopt the inclusion program in Lebanon and do not accept any changes in their regular Lebanese curriculum for research purposes) .

7.3 Tools

The trainer used the translated Arabic version of Robert Reasoner's "Building Up Self Esteem Program" (2000), the translated Arabic version of Robert Reasoner 's Teachers' self-evaluation scale, the translated version Cooper smith self-esteem inventory (Yakoub&Antoun,2004), the translated version of "Conners' Teachers Rating Scale"(AL-Agar, 2000).

8. Results

Table1.Experimental Group 2- The Second Official School for Girls General Self-esteem "Coopersmith" Pre-posttraining results

Grade 1 Special Education Class Regular Total Grade 2 Special Education Class Regular Total

Pre X 39 53 49.5 pre X 25 53 45

G 12.36 15.46 19.51 G 2.40 9.25 12.43

Post X 46 60.75 57.06 post X 36 61.4 54.14

G 12.01 16.17 21.31 G 2.21 15.39 15.01

Results in table 1 showed that the Cooper Smith self-esteem scale for the experimental groups 2, The Second Official School for Girls increased after the training period in self-esteem activities s. In the second experimental group, The Second Official School for Girls, the mean Cooper Smith self-esteem scale (Y)score increased for both regular (53, 53) to (66.75, 61.4) respectively and special education students in grade 1 and grade 2 (39, 25) to (46,364) respectively. The results reveal a slight positive impact of the training on self-esteem activities between the pre and post implementation for the activities.

Table2.Expermental group1- Zokak El Blat Official School Pre-post F Conner's social problems training results

Grade 1 Special Education Class Regular Total Grade 2 Special Education Class Regular Total

Pre X 39.23 24.5 30.15 pre X 36.6 26.42 28.56

G 3.725 1.75 5.73 G 2.31 4.01 5.61

Post X 24.8 21.75 22.89 post X 27.2 23.52 23.61

G 5.41 3.12 7.31 G 2.02 5.71 8.62

Results in table 2 showed that the Conner's (F) social skills test grades decreased after the training period in self-esteem activities on the self-esteem activities. In the first experimental group, Zokak El Blat Official school, the social skills test grades of Conner in both first and second elementary grade (table 4) were down frommean (Y)score of (30.15, 28.56) to (22.89, 23.61) respectively. This implied that the social problems went down and the regular pupils and the special needs pupils performed better than in the inclusive classrooms after the training period.

Table3.Control Group - The Irshad Official School First & second semester academic performance grade results (2013-2014)

Grade 1 Special Education Class Regular Total Grade 2 Special Education Class Regular Total

First X 5/20 10/20 8.51/20 First X 3.5/20 12.21 /20 10.37/20

semester semester

G 1.85 0.98 3.22 G 2.55 3.923 3.911

Second X 4.84/20 11.5/20 8.74/20 Second X 4.84/20 11.6/20 10.05/20

semester semester

G 1.6 2.37 3.969 G 0.505 3.75 3.71

Table 3 shows that school inclusion did not have a change or a positive impact on the academic achievement of the students with special needs( 5,3.5);(4.84, 4.84) and the regular students ( 10, 11.5); 912.21,11.6). It means students need training in self- esteem training in inclusive class and educational specialists to be dedicated more to them. If the barriers to teaching and learning are removed and adequate attention and supportive services are given to pupils with special needs, their academic achievement might surpass that of regular pupils same classroom setting.

Table 4. Robert Reasoner's Teachers 'self-evaluation scale results

Zokak El Blat Official school X 30.25/40

The Second Official School "x 28.88/40 for Girls

The Irshad Official School "X 28/40

Table 4 showed that the results of the teachers' self-esteem or self-evaluation scores on Robert Reasoner scale for teachers affect self-esteem of regular students and those with special needs. In the first and second experimental groups adopting partial and full inclusion, the self-esteem grades of teachers on Robert Reasoner scale were (30.25) and (28.88), whereas the mean score in the control group was ( 28).The first experimental group adopting partial inclusion, the self-esteem grades of teachers on Robert Reasoner scale were (30.25), whereas it is noticed that self-esteem grades on Copper Smith scale of the regular students and those with special needs in the first elementary class (table 1) were up from (38.4, 56.25) to (48.5, 66) respectively. In the second elementary, they were up from (36.8, 48.89) to (50.4, 63.78). The main reason is that training about inclusion was implemented for experimental group 1 to all employees, administrative board teachers, hence they are better qualified to deal with these cases through training sessions and workshops special to integrate students with special needs in schools than group 2 and control group. This points out to the influence of the teacher's self-esteem on the student's self-esteem. The more teachers' self-esteem is high, the more students' self-esteem is high.

9. Discussion

The purpose of this research aimed at investigating the effect of training regular and students with special needs students in "Building Up Self-Esteem Program "on their self-esteem, academic achievement and social skills. The following sections will discuss the three research hypotheses of the study. The first hypothesis is: Implementing self-esteem program activities will contribute in improving self-esteem of the experiment group students more than the control group students.

9.1First Hypothesis

Implementing self-esteem program activities will contribute in improving self-esteem of the experiment group students more than the control group students.

There are significant statistical differences between pre and post implementation of training in self-esteem activities in the regular and special needs students' grades at Cooper Smith Self -Esteem scale for the experimental and the control groups and in favor of the first experimental group's students partially integrated and those of second group fully integrated. The self-esteem rate in the first experimental group increased (20%) for the first elementary class and (25%) for the second. However, in the second experimental group, the percentage was up (15.12%) for the first elementary class and (18.28%) for the second. The results reveal the positive impact of the training on self-esteem activities through the obvious differences between the pre and post implementation for the said activities. The results were in favor of students in the experimental group at the self-esteem level as compared to the control group which self-esteem results were unchanged. Through the results, the first hypothesis is proved to be true. This means that training on self-esteem activities helped all the members of the first and second experimental groups to improve their self-esteem, but didn't help the members of the control group who were not at all subject to training on self-esteem activities. In order to improve self-esteem among the members of the control group, we should train them on the same activities.

9.2 Second Hypothesis

The intervention of self-esteem program activities will improve social skills and academic achievement of the student in the experimental group more than those in the control one.

There are significant statistical differences between pre and post implementation of training in self-esteem activities of regular and special needs students on Conner's social skills scale (f- social problem) in favor of the first and second experimental groups. The social skills percentage in the first experimental group was down (11.5%) for the first elementary class and (7.8%) for the second. However, in the second experimental group, the social skills percentage was down (3.4%) for the first elementary class and (2%) for the second. The self-esteem activities improved the social skills in both first and second experimental groups, albeit in uneven percentages. While training on self-esteem activities improved the academic achievement (3%) for the first elementary class of the first experimental group, the percentage of the academic achievement percentage in the second elementary class of the same group decreased (5%). The same goes to the second experimental group, the academic achievement percentage decreased (1.5%) for the first elementary class and (1.8%) for the second. According to the results, we may say that this hypothesis was partially achieved.

In Addition, the results indicate the positive role of applying cooperative learning which promoted social interaction amongst the students. Using social interaction and active experiences in learning helps children to feed knowledge to one another. These methods also promote social communication skills that children will need to possess as adults. They will need to be able to effectively discuss the various issues that will occur as life progresses, even students with special needs can offer educational knowledge to their peers; if the students learn that they can teach others and learn from others, then they will feel a sense of belonging, pride, and responsibility. When students are working together, these students can be paired with slower learner students from time to time. When students work together and are able to engage in discussions on different ideas, then the sky's the limit to what types of knowledge the students can transmit to one another. Peer learning helps students build effective listening and communication skills (Harding, 2009).

9.3Third hypothesis

Building up self-esteem program will enhance the teachers' self-esteem as measured by the Robert Reasoner's teachers' evaluation scale in schools adopting inclusion approach which leads to the improvement of self-esteem among regular and special needs students.

The results confirm the validity of the hypotheses. Building teacher's self-esteem on the scale of teacher Robert Reasoner evaluation in schools adopting inclusion approach leads to the improvement of Cooper Smith self-esteem among regular and special needs students. The higher the teachers' self- esteem grades, the higher the self -esteem grades of their regular and special needs students. The highest percentage of self-esteem grades for students (22.9%) and for teachers (75.6%) came in the first experimental group where there is a partial inclusion and a preparation at the material level, such as various teaching and moral means through training sessions for administrative board as well as preparations for school inclusion process. Followed by the second experimental group where there is a full inclusion but few numbers of students within the class, whereas the percentage of the teacher self-esteem was (72.2) and of the student (16.7%) compared to the control group comprising a bigger number of students within the same class, namely the first elementary. In this category, the percentage was the lowest among the three groups, whether regarding teacher's self-esteem grades (70%) and students' self-esteem. Therefore, it is of essence that educators are skilled to teach the leaders of tomorrow. Research continues to support the use of self-management techniques to decrease negative behaviors and increase academic performance that can be implemented by the student as well as the teacher (Konrad, Fowler, Walker, Test, & Wood, 2007). Teachers must effectively manage their classrooms so that all students can have a positive learning environment. Also, teachers have to treat special needs students differently based on their learning level. Special needs students are deprived of a suitable education when they are taught at a mismatched level with students who are significantly above their level. This can negatively affect a student's sense of self-esteem and dignity. Even in physical education classes, students with physical disabilities are disadvantaged because the curriculum is not geared to include them (Combs, Elliott, & Whipple, 2010). This can cause students with disabilities to face discrimination and bullying from their peers, causing them to experience low self-esteem, isolation, depression, and in some cases aggression (Khudorenko, 2011). These emotional breakdowns can lead to violence (Frances & Potter, 2010).

10. Conclusion

Through the above-mentioned results, training on the self-esteem activities affected the social skills, self-esteem and academic achievement in public schools adopting the inclusion approach. The results of this study showed that self-esteem increased in the first and second experimental group, and the same goes with the social skills as compared to the control sample that didn't undergo training on these activities. Hence, it is of great importance to make them undergo the training on the activities in order to increase their self-esteem and social skills scores just like the experimental group. Considering the training on the self-esteem activities and their impact on the academic achievement, findings only revealed a progress in the first elementary class of the first experimental group, this can be explained by the Observational Learning Theory, the fact that students with special needs can learn not only desired behaviors from their peers through social interaction, they can also learn academically within their learning community. Children can be the best teachers. Moreover, it is worth noting the positive role of applying cooperative learning which promoted social interaction amongst the students mainly when the Individual Educational Plan (IEP) was prepared to be appropriate to each case of the special needs students in the class. However, we didn't notice any progress in the other classes due to many factors, including the inappropriate individual educational plan for each case of the special needs students in the second elementary class within the first experimental group. It is obvious from the research discussed that properly practiced inclusion method has benefits for all students in both academic achievement and social interaction. Overall, both regular and special needs students view inclusion in a positive manner and seem to make progress in academic classes. Socially, special needs students have the opportunity to interact with their regular peers in order to learn academically and behaviorally. They also seem to maintain adequate self-esteem levels which are comparable to their regular peers. For inclusion to be successful, it is important to provide educators with training, planning time with their co-teacher, and adequate resources to meet the needs of students (Ekeh & Oladayo, 2013). It is when teachers are fully prepared that the inclusion model will yield positive results. Consequently, the key factor of school inclusion is the presence of a specialized team to set up an individual educational plan for every student. In addition, in order to provide a quality education for special needs students in the general education classroom, all of the necessary resources must be available for both the students and the teachers (Anderson, Klassen, & Georgiou, 2007). Resources are often extremely limited. There is a lack of teachers because there is a lack of funding, and these insufficient materials affect the success of the inclusion and those who are involved in the program (Mark, Lamport, Graves &Ward (2012). Since more Lebanese public schools will adopt full or partial inclusion, further research is needed to show the advantages and disadvantages of particular inclusion on both special needs and regular students.

11. Recommendations and future research:

Based on the previously mentioned findings, it was recommended that:

1. Special needs pupils should be placed in inclusive official schools by their parents; with encouragement from the government, since the settings seem to bring about improvement in their academic achievement and social interaction.

2. Regular and special education teachers should be employed by the government to teach pupils in inclusive classroom settings.

3. Workshops and trainings should be organized by school administrators and for academic and non-academic staff in inclusive schools, so that best practices in the running and management of pupils in inclusive schools are imbibed.

4. A follow-up study on the effect of inclusion on the self-esteem and social skills of elementary visually impaired and learning disabled pupils in the north and south regions is recommended.

5. A study on the effect Determine the difference in academic achievement of regular and special needs pupils in inclusive and non-inclusive classrooms in the Lebanese private and official schools.

References

Al Hamaoui, M. (2010) Academic achievement and its relation with self-concept, Damascus University, 26, p. 176.

Al-Aghar, T. (2000).Norming and validating the Conners' Teacher Rating Scale revised on a Lebanese sample of children (2000) ,unpublished Thesis, AUB..

Anderson, C., Klassen, R., & Georgiou, G. (2007). What teachers say they need and what school psychologists can offer. School Psychology International, 28(2), 131-147.

Ashukker, E. (2010). Modern teaching: its components and elements. University papers issues: 33/34/35, p. 74.

Aziadat M., Haddad ,N.(2012). Training program's effect in developing social skills, the academic self-concept and self-confidence of a category of female students having learning disability in Jordan. Educational and Psychological Sciences Magazine, 13( 4) ,p.345.

Baker, E.T., Wang, M.C., & Walberg, H.J. (1994). The effects of inclusion on learning. Educational Leadership, 52(4), 33-35.

Bandura, A. (1989). Human agency in social cognitive theory. American Psychologist.vol.44, No. 9, p.1175-1184.

Cambridge Advanced English Dictionary. (2004).Cambridge University Press.

Causton-Theoharis, J. & Theoharis, G. (2008). Creating inclusive schools for all students. The School Administrator. September, 24-30.

Combs, S. Elliott, S. & Whipple, K. (2010). Elementary physical education teachers' attitudes towards the inclusion of children with special needs: A qualitative investigation. International Journal of Special Education, 25(1), 114-125.

Coopersmith .S.(1990). Self-Esteem Inventories; (G.Yakoub, M. Antoun, trans, 2004).

Coppersmith, S.(1990). Self-Esteem Inventories', (G.Yakoub & M.Antoun, Trans, 2004)

Ekeh P.U&Oldayo O. T. 2013 )Academic achievement of regular and special needs students in inclusive and non-inclusive classroom settings, Nigeria European Scientific Journal .March edition,.9(8), ISSN: 1857 - 7881 (Print) e - ISSN 1857- 7431.

El Daw, B. (2008). The Effect of Training Regular and Students with Special Needs in Building Up Self-Esteem Program on Their Academic and Social Skills in an Integrated Environment. ( published doctoral dissertation). Special Education and learning difficulties Conference in the Arab world, ALYarmouk University, Jordan.

Frances, J., & Potter, J. (2010). Difference and inclusion: beyond disfigurement - the impact of splitting on pupils' social experience of inclusive education. Emotional & Behavioural Difficulties, 15 (1), 49-61.

Harding, S. (2009). Successful inclusion models for students with disabilities require strong site leadership: Autism and behavioral disorders create many challenges for the learning environment. International Journal of Learning, 16(3), 91-103.

Khudorenko, E. A. (2011). Problems of the education and inclusion of people with disabilities. Russian Education & Society, 53(12), 82-91.

Konrad, M.F. Fowler, C.H. Walker, A.R.Test, D.W, & Wood, W.M. (2007). Effects of self- determination interventions on the academic skills of students with learning disabilities. Learning Disability Quarterly, 30(2), 89.

Mark A. Lamport, Lucheia Graves & Amy Ward (2012). Special Needs Students in Inclusive Classrooms: The Impact of Social Interaction on Educational Outcomes for Learners with Emotional and Behavioral Disabilities, European Journal of Business and Social Sciences, 1 (5), 5469.

Mc Farla, R. (1988/ Coping through self-esteem. New York: The Rosen Publishing, INC. P.5 ref (16).

Ntshangase, S. Mdikana, A. & Cronk, C. (2008). A comparative study of self-esteem of adolescent boys with and without learning disabilities. International Journal of Special Education, 23(2), 75-84.

Robert, R. (2000), Building up self - esteem program, (Thahran. Trans).

Tounisisa Y. (2012). Self-esteem and its relation with academic achievement for clear-eyed and blind teenagers. Mawloud Maamary University -Algeria, p. 76.

Weiner, H. M. (2003). Effective inclusion professional development in the context of the classroom. Teaching Exceptional Children, 35(6), 1218.