SDIs in Virtual Learning Environments: Social/Behavioral SDIs (Post #3)

By Cassie Brusch – Project Consultant


Social/Behavioral SDIs

In this section, we will look at social and behavioral SDIs, which are designed to support students’ social needs and behavioral needs. Social SDIs often refer to students who need support with peer-to-peer or peer-to-adult interactions and emotional regulation. Behavioral SDIs often focus on the individual student’s actions. Behavioral SDIs are designed to increase appropriate behavior and reduce disruptive or interfering behavior. 

As teachers we know the importance of classroom expectations for behavior. Typically we start the year modeling and practicing various behaviors. For example, how we line up for specials. One way we can do this using these virtual tools is to allow students to record some of these behavior expectations and post them in our virtual classroom so they can be referred back to throughout the year. In a fully virtual setting, the modeling could be how we attend live meetings or how we turn in assignments (including expectations on how we title our documents). 

While teachers and students have learned to use various digital tools to enhance their virtual classrooms, many of these tools can continue to be used in traditional classroom settings.  For students who need frequent breaks/movement breaks, teachers can continue to provide videos/links with various brain break opportunities. 

Some ideas for break brains teachers can use include: 

  • Cosmic Kids Yoga 
    • Cosmic Kids has an app, website, and YouTube Page. Students can practice Yoga with Jaime who takes them on adventures through different kid friendly themes. 
  • GoNoddle 
    • GoNoodle gets students  moving with short interactive videos and activities. GoNoodle also offers meditation and breathing lessons for students. 
  • Jack Hartmann
    • Jack Hartmmann sings songs about various educational content that are engaging to students and include fun movements for students to do along with the songs.


PaTTAN has developed this resource, which includes information about SDIs (specially designed instruction) and how to implement SDIs in virtual environments. In virtual environments these accommodations and modifications are implemented with digital tools and resources and IEP team members must be aware of how they are implemented. 

As this series continues, we will continue to look at how SDIs can be implemented in virtual environments. These virtual tools can be used in traditional classrooms as well. 


This series will continue with various SDIs in virtual environments. We will dive deeper into Instructional SDIs, Student Work SDIs, Physical SDIs, and finally we will wrap this series up with Executive Functioning SDIs. 

For more information see the full resource here.

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