Friday, May 2, 2008

Literacy & Technology

As a Technology teacher, many times I come up against students with reading difficulties and because I fall into the “Specialist” category, there may or not be an aide to help. If a student has an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), or 504 Accommodation, I have a bit of a heads-up on the students learning style and possible disability.

Technology is fun. I think what I’ve learned from this assignment is I can incorporate reading and make it fun. It is a bit difficult at times because of short rotations (22 days), but I think if I step back and incorporate reading strategies each student will benefit in their own way.

For instance, I always give students preview of a lesson utilizing an Infocus Projector. Why not add in the different strategies of reading as I can. In this particular newsletter unit I can use a number of the Eight Principles of Vocabulary Instruction quite easily. Previewing and enthusiasm about content area language. The students know I’m proud to be a geek and I want to turn them into geeks someday.

Using Strategic Processing students activate their prior knowledge and Making Connections – Each lesson is based on a previous lesson, a previous year (I have students in grades 3-6). Teaching concepts in semantically related clusters so students can see the associations between concepts. For example, a student’s knowledge of color, balance and coherence from a previous lesson will assist them in their newsletter creation.

And finally, students can revise their models easily. As students read, I have them underline anything they don’t understand and circle any unknown vocabulary. They can do this on their word processors if they can. This assists when they are using study guides. When they don’t answer a question correctly, they go back to their original content. In this lesson plan, it could be the PowerPoint handouts where they mark their reading.

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