Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Google Chrome

I received an email this morning from TCEA, a technology education and development organization that offers great conferences and workshops in Texas.  Now that Google Chrome has been added to our school division's image, it is time to start exploring this as a great accessibility tool for students that need additional support.  Here is just one of the many extensions and apps that can be added to the Google Chrome browser.  Have a read through these 'tech notes' for further information about Read and Write.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Applications of Applications

The majority of my year thus far has been focused on finding the 'right' applications.  Quality apps for the iPad that don't contain adds or in-app purchases and that offer high quality educational experiences for students of varying ability levels.  I'm moving on.  It's time to start looking at how to apply the applications that I've searched out (and some new and exciting ones) in the classroom and through the course of the school day.  To start my journey, I've uncovered an excellent resource maintained by clinicians in the United States who have worked hard to compile information into an invaluable wikispace.  Spedapps2 is a great source of information to figure out how to appropriately and effectively use many of the great apps that we've used in Student Services this year in ISD.  This is a great resource for RTs as well as classroom teachers with students using iPads in the classroom.  It is definitely worth spreading the word about this site, so please take a moment to forward this information to colleagues.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Literacy Instruction Conference

Last Wednesday and Thursday, I attended a conference hosted by the Westman Clinicians Association in Brandon, MB. The presenters, Caroline Musselwhite EdD, SLP, AT specialist and Gretchen Hanser PhD, OT, AT specialist, presented a variety of literacy instruction strategies to use with students with mild to significant disabilities.  Over the course of two days, participants learned the ins and outs of creating an effective and inclusive reading and writing program for students with a variety of needs and abilities. This conference was incredibly informative and provided valuable resources and strategies.  One of the most comprehensive resources presented was the Louisiana Department of Education's Students with Significant Disabilities site, containing articles, assessment checklists and matrixes, as well as webinars that demonstrate and explain effective, research-based strategies to use for literacy instruction and assessment.  You can find some great resources by visiting there site and perusing the available articles, links, and PDFs.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

All About Math

There are millions (or so it seems) of math apps for the iPad to meet every math outcome.  There are so many blogs and websites that list the "Top 10 Best Math Apps" that it can make one's head spin.  I've collected a few math app lists that I have reviewed and I'll list the ones that you might consider using with some of the students in your classroom.  I've included the link to a Google Doc that I have created with a comprehensive list of math apps for a variety of purposes.  These apps have been chosen for their lack of in-app purchases and adds, easy to navigate interface, and customization options. Please have a look at the doc for some great math tools and feel free to suggest great apps that you have used in the comments box below so that I may add them to the slides!

See the slides here.

Autism Awareness Month

If you haven't been checking out Apps Gone Free or Technology in Education Facebook page, please start! The founders of Technology in Education have persuaded many app developers to reduce app prices or offer them for free during April, Autism Awareness month.  There is a daily list of apps that have gone free for the day in the Apps Gone Free app and you can also check out the Technology in (SPL) Education Facebook page for promos and other apps that have been discounted for a day.