One thing I have complained about for years is that I can never find anything that I want on the internet. All of a sudden, I'm finding all kinds of things! Sometimes, I'm not sure I could find them again, but it's been quite an adventure - and most of it started looking for ways to work better with my students! Well, today's journey took me to http://coolcatteacher.blogspot.com/2006/01/how-wikis-podcasts-and-laptops-help.html
which is a great posting about using wikispaces, laptos and podcasts with students with learning disabilities.
"I am passionate about helping kids with learning disabilities. (I'm not sure the PC word but that's the one I'll use.) Any teacher can teach a smart kid -- a "smart kid" with regular learning abilities can learn from an inanimate object -- a book. They can teach themselves on the Internet. Teach them and you are knowledgeable about your subject. But it is the child who has challenges -- you are true teacher when you accommodate and reach that child."
I felt like I could've been reading my own journal or something; in fact, I think I used some similar statements in an educational philosophy paper somewhere along my journey.
I love her suggestions for using the wiki - I think I'll share them with my class on Monday and see what they think :) - check it out:
Look. Say. Do.
Many of the students with LD have been told to use the Look - Say - Do method of learning.Look. Say. Do. Using WikisWikis fit this beautifully and I've found my ADHD kids are some of the best at it.
Look -- The students are looking in their textbook and on the Internet for information related to their topic. They are reading it.
Say -- Meanwhile, they are discussing the topic often in a very animated fashion with their partner to make sure they aren't posting the same thing and to discuss where it fits.
Do -- Then, they are summarizing the new information they have found and putting into their wiki.
Look - They reread the wiki to ask themselves where the "holes" in their information lie.
Say - They talk about it with their partner.
Do - They search for more information and add it to the wiki and it continues.
Great advice! This is a strategy that is do-able, easy to remember and "fair". She (Vikie Davis, a great teacher from Georgia) has some other comments about "fair" that are great, and no matter when I read or hear fair, I am reminded of Rick Lavoie: "Fair does not mean equal; fair means everyone getting what he/she needs". Haven't seen F.A.T. City? Check it out!