Project 1- ADHD

A student who has difficulty sitting within their chair throughout the day may not learn the way other students within their class learn. Not everyone is an auditory or visual learner; especially not a student with ADHD. The best way for a student with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) to learn is by incorporating different kinesthetic techniques. Kinesthetically learning allows the student to get up move and around and actually “act out” what they are learning. It allows them to go through the steps or process of what they are hearing or seeing about. But when the student can get up and make a recreation of what the first settlement looked like by building their own and acting out the first landing of the first settlers. The students get their hands on experience with it instead of listening and watching a slide show about how Jamestown was created.

Students with ADHD have multiple areas within their school life that they need help in. It isn’t just them having a hard time focusing on what is going on around them. It also is time management, completing multi-step projects, note taking, etc. All of these issues do play into how or what happens within their schooling. To help them cope with the process and stay on task that might be given to them for a multi-step project there could be different stations located around the room where each step is completed at a different station. It allows them that kinesthetic aspect that students with ADHD need to help them focus on the task at hand.

Every student with ADHD is going to have different strengths in different areas. However, the strength for their learning is actually getting up and doing something that coincides. When they actively do the topic it allows them to get their “energy” out and help focus on the information they are completing. I noticed to when going through different topics and research a lot of them are very creative and have a lot of creativity energy with different topics. When they have their energy within a project they enjoy and are creative with it allows them to focus. So incorporating different ways of having the students be creative themselves allows them to “release” that energy in a way.

One way students are being helped through their difficulties with ADHD is medicine that helps them have more focus within their day(s). But medicine isn’t the only way that children get help with the difficulties faced with ADHD. The students should go through cognitive therapy as well. This helps the areas that the medicine won’t help within their learning and everyday life aspect. Medication can’t solve everything. With going to therapy as well it helps you discuss your issues and come up with solutions to help your time management skills, completing multi-step tasks, etc.

One website that discusses someone who has dealt with ADHD during their schooling is Michael Phelps the Olympic swimmer. His mother discussed about the issues that had arose when he was going to school and what needed to be done. The interview she did with Great Schools, discusses what she did for him and the struggles he had. The interview she does talks about her experiences and isn’t telling others what to do or how to handle their children living with ADHD.

Another first hand encounter is a 12 year old boy named Brad. Within his video he discusses the issues he faces with his ADHD and schooling. However it also discusses his strengths outside of school as well within his life and realm. I think this is a very eye opening experience because he shares his experiences and his “life” what he does. It shows the creative side he has as well with his own lego video he directed. As well as that just because he has ADHD doesn’t mean that he isn’t smart in school or isn’t learning (he shares that he has 4 A’s and 2 B’s on his report card).

I found another video of a young girl, who’s either in middle school or high school sharing how she feels about ADHD. She discusses how it is hard for her to sit through a typical school day and the issues she faces with having ADHD. She talks about the myths and misconceptions of ADHD and how she was explained ADHD and how it affects everything.

References:

Fowler, M. (n.d.). Adhd: School issues and interventions. Retrieved from http://school.familyeducation.com/add-and-adhd/learning-disabilities/57658.html

Rapp, J. (2010). Risky business: Adhd isn’t 9 to 5. why are your meds?. Retrieved from http://adda.convio.net/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=5349

Watkins, C. (2007). Helping your child succeed at school: Parent as coach, advocate and partner. Retrieved from http://www.ncpamd.com/adhd_and_school.htm

Youtube.com

Reflection #5

In chapter 1 in Chisholm and May I felt it discussed a lot about the building of a website which I do have some background knowledge then within chapter 2 it talks about accessibility for the users. The entire reading makes me think back to undergraduate days when I was building websites for my minor and all the different important key information there was to include to make sure everyone had enough access to your website. For example that the background didnt conflict with font/color of the writing so it was easy to read for ANYONE. (examples hard seeing and colorblind, etc) Also then we had to have tags when scrolling over pictures so people would know what hte pictures are or when a screen reader was used it could tell the person looking/exploring your website what it was. So I feel that in a way within those classes we were practicing UD for our websites but not as strongly or as deeply as we could’ve been doing the whole time.

Tech Lab- Creating Web Pages

I have had some experience creating web pages within the past because my minor during my undergrad was to build interactive websites for students and teachers to use alike using different technologies such as creating swish videos, imovies, podcasts, powerpoints, etc. We had basic knowledge of how to create hyperlinks and when scrolling over items labeling it, etc. However I never did learn how to write in code or using HTML so that would be something I would very much appreciate like to learn how to do because it would be a very useful tool to have.

This website w3schools.com allows you to learn how to write html step by step which I think is very cool and since it’s through a “school” you can get a certificate at the end of the completion. Another helpful site I found is web.com which allows users to create their own websites easy and free. The programs I used within my undergraduate career were programs that the school provided for us that was a paid program ( I cannot remember the name of it now).

I feel that I would never fully be confident in writing html or code in the future unless I took multiple classes that allowed me to be able to complete and fully understand the process. However, creating websites through different programs is much easier and I feel completely more confident in that then anything else.

Reflection #4

Within the article, “Using Technology to Create and Adminster Accessible Tests” I found a lot of useful information when creating different tests through technology and even creating paper tests. I never thought about all the different ways to look at the layout of the test by using capital letters, different fonts, backgrounds, etc. Usually when I am making a test I just type it out give the students either multiple choice or some short answers with lines to answer on and that is about it. So when reading through this article and looking back at the tests I had created (especially for my special education students) I didn’t take everything into consideration like I should have for the students to have full accessibility to the tests. Then also providing enough feedback for the students to be able to reflect back on their tests and see where they went wrong and retake it multiple times. I think that within the future I will do more testing with technology because there are so many more benefits with doing it I feel and it will help the students more.

 

Also within the article about differentiating instruction in chapter 6 I like how it discussed different ways to assess the product of learning. Students are sick of tests as much as teachers are giving them and the fact that a lot of states have state standards with tests that they have to meet up to why not show other ways as well that the student learned the content. Not all students are great test takes (I am one of them) however they do well in school. With having them have multiple different ways to be able to show the knowledge they’ve gained it may help them retain it more and be more beneficial to them compared to the standard tests.

Tech Lab- Smartboard

I have used smartboards a couple of times within my past during undergrad and in a classroom setting in K-12. I have made a couple of interactive lessons with a smartboard and as well have used them within my classroom. However, I don’t feel that I am an expert within the smartboard area because there are so many more things with a smartboard I don’t know how to use and I feel the more I learn with it the more beneficial it will be for my lessons and the students participating within the lessons.

I like the website SMART Exchange because it allows teachers to share their different presentations or tools they made for within the classroom as well as providing lessons that correlate with standards as well. Sometimes it is hard to find good pre-existing lessons to get ideas from when there is no correlation to the standards that need to be used within the curriculum.

I also like the resource Teacher’s Guide Interactive because it gives templates that you can take your own information and place into a pre-existing layout for the students to have lessons that are pertanent to the subjects they are learning and could be modified for different levls of understanding as well.

I’ve learned that there are a lot of resources out there for teachers to use to get ideas and/or templates to help enhance any lesson. There are templates/lessons out there for smartboard that are much more sophisticated then the ones I have ever made as well. I learned a little more of what I wanted to know about smartboards and I didn’t realize there were open forums to share different smartboard activities as well.

Reflection #3

Within the article, “Teacher Perspectives: Strategy Instruction Goes Digital” by Nicole Strangman it discussed the multiple digital resources 2 teachers used to help them teach information to their students.  I felt in a way that not all students were benefiting from the strategy instruction digitally because within the reading I felt that only certain students who struggled more with reading and different ELA skills were getting the strategies digitally compared to other students who didn’t struggle as much. I feel that if you are going to use the the instruction digitally there needs to be enough for all students whether they need it or not. The teacher named Michelle, talks about how she breaks the students up into groups and has a set on the computers using the digital resources and the other groups of students are using the same materials and strategies just not digitally. I feel that all students should use the digital aspect of it because it can still benefit the students who don’t have as much trouble with ELA compared to the ones that really do struggle.

Reflection #2

 

Within the reading,Differentiated Instruction by Jacqueline Thousand, Richard Villa, and Ann Nevin it discuses different topics in relation to having a universal design within lessons and some of the topics stood out to me because I can relate. For example the topic of being culturally relevant within the lessons. It is important to do so because students will not be able to get the full capacity out of a lesson if they cannot relate. For example in one of my classes during graduate school a fellow classmate was talking about how a new reading program they were implementing within their school district. It was based out of Texas and a lot of the readings/questions that went along with it talked about how kids had never seen certain items; for example like snow. Well living in CNY we get snow an awful lot and students here have been around it and deal with it for 4-5 months out of the year. So the students aren’t able to use their “imagination” as much within the lesson or be able to relate back to how it wouldn’t be to not ever experience snow. Also within my student teaching during my undergrad I communicated and taught to my students within the city of Rochester differently then students who were in the suburbs. The students in the city have seen a lot more and different things then the suburban children and vice versa. If they cannot relate then the students struggle. How can we take pre-existing programs however make it culturally relevant to the students when you need to follow a program? That is one of my main concerns.

Another topic that stood out to me in the reading was about taxonomy. When using any taxonomies for example like Bloom’s it doesn’t allow the student to reach the goal or objective set out for teacher. However what if the teacher writes the lesson with all students in mind and has certain objectives for certain groupings of students or has one unison objective but allows the student to show comprehension at multiple levels of a topic within different ways?

Then it discusses layering. I feel that this is the best way to have a UD within a classroom setting compared to the other topics discussed. Within layering the teacher has multiple resources for students to use that are at different levels for the students to comprehend. When the same material is presented to all students within each of their own understanding it allows the students to have access more available within the lesson to help them.

The last topic that intrigued me as well was coteaching. During my student teaching I was involved in a coteaching set up and I did not think it was beneficial at all. The way it was set up in my classroom was special education students went with one teacher will the regular ed students went with the other teacher then they occassionally met as a whole group to do activities as an entire class or swap students to be able to teach different lessons. How is this UD?  I don’t understand. Maybe there is/was a better model out there that can be related and I would LOVE to see it and know how it works so maybe in the future I could implement that within my own classroom.

coteaching —

Tech Lab- Google Docs

I’ve used google docs in a couple of classes within my graduate studies as well as working with others while student teaching. What I know it can do is through google you can email a written piece of a project, homework, group work, etc to the different members or others you are working with through gmail and that person can access the file like it is already in word and make suggestions, improvements, change items, add items, etc within the document and then once again email it back out to everyone. I heavily used it last semester in my educational research class within two of my groups because it was the easiest way for us to make changes within the paper and have everyone within the group see it without having to make a meeting for all of us to meet to review it or download it off the internet and save then reattach to an email when you would like to email it back to everyone within your group. I felt it was a much easier process to complete. I wouldn’t say I’m a complete novice at it either or an expert. I am somewhere in between.

When  I went to google for a search engine to use to find different resources it directed me right to the webpage where you create google docs. I didn’t realize that it didn’t have to be created already within a word document because that is how I and project partners used to collaborate on it. It can be created right there. As well I didnt know drawings could be done on it as well as a spreadsheet which probably makes it a lot easier for businesses to manipulate new numbers within different areas on a spreadsheet to be able to calculate items. As well there is just a link that I can send to anyone to edit it. Usually within my gmail account it automatically goes to the google docs set up so I never paid much attention to that and a lot of people I used google docs with had a gmail account they used as well.

Within  the realm I will be working in, which is education classroom setting grades 1-6 it would now allow students to easily edit peers papers of a rough draft form when it’s already typed up. On the website Google For Educators it discusses the many ways students and educators alike are able to use google docs within their every day learning and ways I never thought of using. It allows the educators to see who edited what peers papers and what they actually did. So it allows educators to make sure that students are accountable for what they are suppose to be doing editing wise for students and especially if a student needs to get multiple peers to edit a paper it shows the educator which peer did what. Also I didn’t know it stores the document safely online so if something does happen to your computer or you need to access it from anywhere it can happen. I thought it was only between the people sharing it for example through your email.

I think that the students will benefit most from google docs because even though writing papers out now a days is a lost “art form” students are now more leaning towards technology and to get items done that way. So if students type up a rough draft of a paper and then need it edited they can either email it to peers or share the link for google docs with peers and the students all at once can edit a peer’s paper and not wait for the one copy to be passed around. Also they can edit a paper at a time that fits into their schedule compared to rushing to try and do it in class or so on. Also within the younger grades I will be working with if they are completing a group project and they run out of time in class to be able to work on it they can now share it at home within their group and be able to still complete it in a timely manner and not have to be all in the same room.

Teachers as well would get a lot of use out of google docs as well. Within the school the faculty could be putting together a new presentation for the board of education or a group of same grade level teachers are putting together a unit plan that they want to share, it allows the teachers to not have to stay after school after an already long day to be able to complete when they can complete in comfort of own home and do all the things necessary they wanted to do to the document there. I feel that the users that may struggle with it are people who are “newer” to using computers and/or internet or students and faculty who don’t have internet/computer access at home. Not everyone can afford to have a personal computer with internet access and that limits what that person may be able to contribute to that project and/or items they are working on. I really don’t think people with disabilities are going to have an issue with it. It will take everyone a little bit of time to adjust to using it and being able to figure out their appropriate uses. To make a more universal design I would have a screen reader already built into program so people wouldn’t have to use their own.

I’ve learned there are a lot more uses then just between students, teacher’s can use it to keep track how students are using it and share information with all different types of people as well. I will definitely use this within my classroom for group projects among students and within the ELA writing component for editing and sharing ideas.

Overall I would rate this a very helpful tech lab because I learned a lot of more topics that google docs can perform. With the knowledge I had before I feel like now I can do so much more with it.

Reflection #1

This week’s readings gave me a lot to think about and a lot to take in at once. I felt it went all over the board from talking about the importance of having UD (universal design) within implementation of learning to how the brain actually takes the information that students want to be able to retain and recall the information. In the article, “Instructional Accommodations: Impact of Conventional vs Social Constructivist View of Disability” by Sarah Ginsberg and Karen Schulte I found it very interesting how different the approaches were from different professors. I never truly realized that some professors honestly don’t know how to teach. I thought they would go into that profession because they had wanted to share their knowledge and ideas of what they know about a topic with others. Yes we’ve all had an occasional professor or two that someone thinks just isn’t meant to be teaching that subject however within this study it sounds like there are a lot more of them then I realized and that they honestly don’t want to make an effort for UD to help benefit all students with their learning process. Some of the responses the professors gave back in the interviews flabbergasted me because it honestly sounds like they don’t care about how to help all students they want to help the “easier” students and the students that are the “difficult” ones need to come to them with solutions instead of working out the problem or frustrations together. Coming from an educational field (1-6 degree in elementary/special education) it makes me sad to see this because I feel it’s the teacher’s responsiblity to help the student any way possible with the issues they may be having. Some students do have difficulty standing up and voicing their opinion to be able to get the help they need. But the lessons/projects/tests/etc all need to be made for the students no matter what difficulties they’re having that they can complete it in one way or another. However, the teachers who they interviewed that do believe in helping all students (like me) I feel are teachers that may be more approachable with some sort of an educational background because they understand more the difficulties that they encounter or have been in a simliar position themselves.

Within the article, “How the Brain Processes Information” in the book entitled, How the Brain Learns by Brian Sousa it discusses how the brain actually retains information within the working memory and keeping it within the long term memory, etc. I never truly focused on how I retained information myself but going through the different worksheets at the end of the reading after completing it, it made me realize how much of a kinesthetic and visual learner I am. Looking back at how I taught different topics during student teaching to my students I used a lot of visual types of activities and also getting up and moving around because I honestly hated straight lecturing to a class of 4th or 1st graders and I felt that they could only handle so much of it just like me. Also when I would be sitting in class (especially throughout college) I knew what classes I paid attention in and what I did not which were more classes where there were a lot of different ways information was shown or we were active in. For example freshman year of college I took a class about American military history. It sounded like an interesting topic to me however all the professor ever did was straight lecture. No powerpoint slides, different class activities to get up move around, we very rarely got a video about some war that we were studying at the time and if you go through my notebook I took notes in for that class all you see all around the edges are my artwork and doodling while the professor spoke. (I noticed that was one of the questions on one of the ending sheets within the reading). And yes, as an education major we did these kind of “quizzes” all the time to figure out what was the best way we learned, however I felt I was a mixture of all 3. But now looking back I realize that I’m more so hands on and visual with helping me remember ideas and topics.