Monday, December 21, 2015

Teachers & General Ed Students at San Elijo Middle School (SMUSD) use a SMART board and a SMART table to support students!

Shannon Dudley (Special Education teacher- Mod/Severe) and Allen Brooks (General Education teacher-Technology )
San Elijo Middle School

At any given moment, you can be sure to see technology in action in Shannon Dudley's classroom supporting students with moderate-severe disabilities! Students are immersed in technology from everything from augmentative & alternative communication for students who are non-verbal to SMART board technology for lessons.
VIDEO: Sierra (student in Mrs. Dudley's classroom) and Advanced Technology students work with the SMART table

One of the many highlights in the class is the peer collaboration between 8th grade general education students in the Advanced Technology class headed by teacher Allen Brooks. For the past 4 years, Mr. Brooks and Mrs. Dudley have cultivated a collaborative working environment that brings students from a mod-severe environment together with their gen ed peers via technology.  
Students in the Advanced Technology class creating programs for the Smart board and Smart table

The general education 8th graders in Advanced Technology class have been working with Shannon's class since September.   They first came in to observe, meet kids, talk with them, make connections. Following that, Shannon came and talked to the technology class about the needs and individual strengths of the students.

Last year, Shannon and Allen received a SMART Table for Shannon's class to create and use activities that were motivating and more individualized to the needs of Shannon's students.Their semester assignment is to create, trial (beta phase), and implement programs and activities for Shannon's SMART board & table using SMART software to create programs. Their design was based off particular subjects, then slowly catered to individual student's interests: such as a love for french fries, text size specific to student's fine motor, placement of material on the screen, color/background for vision differences, and even large, hard hitting selections for student's with higher degree of sensory needs.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Temple Heights Elementary (VUSD) Creates Access!

Heather Love-Fleck (5th grade teacher), Alyssa Prouty (Paraeducator) and Penny Stephenson (Education Specialist) worked as a team this week to discuss ways to make the curriculum more accessible for a student!

Mrs. Love-Fleck uses technology regularly in her classroom.  The students have access to iPads and can retrieve and submit assignments via Google Drive.  The team met to discuss additional ways to give more access to a student that has difficulty with fine motor skills.  He is capable of producing written language, but his fine motor skills present a barrier.  Some of the ideas that the team came up with include:
  • Access to worksheets (including district assessments) using an app called Notability.  This app was purchased by the district for all students.  The app allows the student to annotate on the document and then submit it to his teacher using a shared folder in Google Drive.  He will also do this to create math journals!
  • Mrs. Prouty learned how to use the "Scan to PDF" feature on the school copier in order to get the worksheets into the student's Google Drive account. 
The team plans to have collaborative meetings like this on a regular basis to discuss how to create access on upcoming projects/assignments.  Way to go team!!!

Alyssa Prouty scanning worksheets to send to the student's
Google Drive.
Penny Stephenson & Heather Love-Fleck

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Ability Awareness at Richland Elementary (SMUSD)

The "Talking Station" Lydia, Shannon & Hilary
Lydia shares how and why students use
Augmentative and Alternative Communication

  Jeff shows how speech-to-text can support students with fine motor
Richland Elementary School had their 2nd annual Ability Awareness week Sept 28th - Oct. 2nd. On September 30, 2015 we were invited to participate.  Members of our AT team shared how we support students by providing access and tools for communication.  The students got a chance to use some of the devices and programs.  It was a wonderful event.  Way to go Richland team! 
Students accessing a reading passage via text-to-speech..  Denise helps students understand
what it's like to have fine motor difficulties.  The goggles help them understand what has more barriers.