Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ten Tips for Tuesday

You may have noticed the dearth of posts lately. I'll try to make up for that with this post, Ten Tips for Tuesday.

  • Dave Edyburn's annual round-up of the best Special Education Technology Literature (What Have We Learned Lately) is worth a read. Check it out. We all benefit from his work. Thank you, Dave!
  • The need to equip and empower our struggling learners has never been more critical. Fortunately, the availability of tools and strategies makes this easier than ever. If you haven't already read it, read, Toolbelt Theory for Everyone, by Ira Socol to understand the urgency of empowering every student for success. Tools matter.
  • Now that you understand the importance of offering tools to your students with learning challenges, head over to the UDL Tech Toolkit Wiki. It's constantly updated and links to a number of free tools that improve access to the curriculum and remove the obstacles to learning. If Glogster is blocked in your school, you can navigate to the categories on the left side of the home page.
  • Bookshare.org has improved it's website to create a more intuitive user interface for students with print disabilities. Check out the Newberry Award Winners List. Watch the testimonial videos of students who benefit from the services that Bookshare provides. Learn abou the new reading tools available including free access to higher quality Acapela voices for Bookshare members and Read Outloud by Don Johnston. To withhold this free service from your students with print disabilities should be illegal!
  • Accessible Book Collection now offers free subscriptions to assistive technology professionals. This is great news so that you can now demonstrate how to use this site and to evaluate it's effectiveness for your students. You must meet the following qualifications: you work for a school system or similar entity
  • you have responsibility for students in more than one school

    you train teachers in the use of assistive technology

    your email address is associated with a school district or similar entity

    you are a resident of the United States

  • Did you know that Recordings For the Blind and Dyslexic now offers the ability to download their audio books directly to a Windows computer? Many districts have subscriptions to RFBD so check out this new feature. No need for their proprietary listening devices.
  • Check out Vocaroo, the easiest online audio recording tool ever. You can send the recording via email or post it on the Internet. This has so many applications for kids with print or written expression struggles.
  • A great resource for using ubiquitous iPods in Education can be found here in a wiki developed by Lisa Thumann. And then tell your kids about this article 100 Ways to Use Your IPod to Learn and Study Better and let them use the tools that work best for them.
  • Google For Educators continues to expand it's resources. Check out the fantastic, new Google Earth 5. Have you tried Google Sketchup for your students on the autism spectrum?
  • This last tip is for you. Please leave any new tips you must share in the comments section.


Samuel said...

Create an interactive whiteboard out of a Nintendo Wiimote, a bluetooth connection to your computer, and a infrared led light pen!

Ricky Buchanan said...

Thanks for those resources - especially the iPod stuff.

I wish the intellectual property laws weren't what they were, it's really frustrating to see wonderful things like Bookshare exist but I can't use them because I live in the wrong country!

For my contribution, some good advice that saved my ass this week: You Must Have Backups