For my C4C #2 I commented publicly instead of privately because I didn't feel that anything that I said would be embarrassing to the student or would hurt their feelings. I was fortunate enough to read a well-written blog post where my classmate followed the rules in the blog post's instructions and as well as the instructions in Writing A Quality Blog Post. There were very minimal amounts of spelling or grammar mistakes and I could tell that my classmate had taken her time in writing the post. Her writing was clear, very informative had someone never seen the videos, and it was well written. In the future, if I ever had to read a blog post that wasn't as well written and had more mistakes I would probably decide to let my classmate know privately. Fortunately, for this post I did not have to do so.
After watching the video, What Is Peer Editing, viewing the slideshow, Peer Edit With Perfection, and watching the video, Writing Peer Reviews Top 10 Mistakes, I feel very informed on how to write a meaningful, quality review for a peer. The first video and the slideshow went hand in hand. I liked this because I am more of a visual learner. It is hard for me to just remember what I hear, so I liked that the slideshow basically restated what was in the video. To write a quality peer review, you must follow 3 basic steps: compliments, suggestions, and corrections. Also, you should stay positive and be specific in your comments and reviews. Let the writer know exactly what you think, but make sure that your criticism is constructive, not hurtful.
I love, love, loved the Top 10 Mistakes video! Those kids were great! I've always been afraid that my peers were going to think that I was a "Picky Patty" and I definitely did not want to seem like a "Mean Margaret". I think that it is hard to not seem like at least one of those characters in the video, but we should always keep in mind how we would feel if someone were to say something hurtful to us. Also, the video taught us to be mindful when we are on the receiving end of a peer review. Don't blow off the comment like "Whatever William". Gladly receive comments even if they aren't what you want to hear. Most of the time, your peers are trying to help you and if you take their comments with an open mind then, chances are, they will benefit your writing.
Technology in Special Education
A.) Students in Special Education classrooms or even children with special needs that are integrated into a regular classroom often have trouble that other children would not typically have. Sometimes they have trouble visually and sometimes they have trouble speaking. Usually these children are incredibly bright, they just have a difficult time either communicating or paying attention. After watching Technology in Special Education, I learned that there were many ways to help children in need with the use of technology.
Ms. Cook does an excellent job incorporating the use of laptops and other technology in her Special Ed classroom. A couple of the students shown had trouble talking and they used the computer to type out what they wanted to say. Another child couldn't see very well so he used a computer program to magnify the print of the text that he was reading. Also, one child, who had difficulty in reading and concentration used his iPod touch to listen along to a book. Technology in Special Education has come a long way. I think the use of technology is a great way to get Special Education students involved in learning and excited about learning. The students in Ms. Cook's class were very excited about their technology, and Im sure other students would be as well.
For the future, if I had a special education child in my class, I think a laptop or an iPod touch would be a great thing to keep in my classroom. I'd also make use of powerpoint presentations to show to the whole class, so that the class would benefit and my special education student would also be able to learn. I'm sure that there are resources out there that I haven't even heard of. I'd love to learn and maybe incorporate those technologies into my classroom for special needs children. Each child is different and they learn in different ways; I'm sure with all of the fun new technology there would be something that could benefit every child.
B.) The app that I chose after watching How the iPad Works with Academics for Autism is called Reading Raven HD and it is available on the iPad, iPhone or iPod. I was drawn to Reading Raven because of its fun graphics and the great customer reviews. Reading Raven is an app consisting of lessons and games that help children read words then builds up to reading full sentences. Its lessons are self-paced and can be customized to fit the age group that you are working with.
I would use this for class games and if there were special needs children in my class it would also be beneficial to them. The colors are bright and the illustrations are exciting. This app works on many different subjects from reading and writing to phonics, spelling and vocabulary. It seems like it would be a good tool to use for several different subjects, not only one, and I think it would grab the attention of special needs children while also being effective for the other children in the class.
Vicki Davis: Harness Your Digital Smarts
Vicki Davis is an IT teacher at a Georgia public school who founded two different social media/blogging sites where her students can post and interact with students from around the world. One site, called DigiTeen, encourages digital citizenship among students while they post to their blog concerning a certain topic. The other, Flat Classroom Project, incorporates students from all over the world, reporting together and communicating through the site. In the video, Ms. Davis says the she encourages students to be thinkers and to teach others. She also says that it is ok if a teacher doesn't know everything.
I love Ms. Davis' teaching style. I feel like I'm that teacher that doesn't know everything under the sun but I am willing and excited to learn. In our day and age students, especially older children, are more informed than their teachers are and teachers shouldn't be afraid of that. I think Ms. Davis' sites are beneficial to students because, without those sites, these children would probably never talk to a student in the middle east or across the seas. I'd love to learn more about her websites and possibly even use them in the future.