Technology in special education is a key component to learning. As inclusion teachers, my co-teacher and I strive to create a classroom rich in assistive/instructional technology to not only engage our students, but to provide them with equal access to the tools they need to be successful and productive adults. This forum is meant to assist classified students in all learning environments, from the least restrictive to the most restrictive placements. Who are you and what are you doing to engage, teach and motivate student learning through technology?

Tags: specialeducation, technology

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I am a new teacher with only a year under my belt as a regular classroom teacher. I worked as a paraeducator for 3 years prior while getting my teaching degree in elementary ed. In 1 week I will begin a new position in a charter school with students from 6-8 grade. This is a project-based environment that allows students at all learning levels to work at thier own pace. I know I will have at least 1 student that has been "classified" but really all of my students will all have an individual learning plan so could all be said to be "classified" whether high, low, or inbetween. Anyway, I want to open as many avenues as possible for all of my students and to do so I need to open as many avenues in my knowledge and collaboration as possible. Your post here intrigues me and I would love to hear ideas on how to use technology to help these students. I am in a technology rich environment, I just need to be sure to lead and facilitate these students in a way that enhances thier individual needs.
I have been in Special Education for over 10 years, the past 6 years as the Inclusion facilitator for our middle school campus, and am now the facilitator for our entire district. I have always tried to integrate technology with special education and have had some great experiences. For the past two years, I have used Activeboards in the classroom. We have used different software packages, including using Flash to create online activities and game shows. And just this past year, we have used blogs and wikis in the classrooms. Our experiences in 2.0 so far have been wonderful. I did an global project with a class in Malaysia. I have also connected high school students with our middle school students in a writing project. I have also started using iPods to deliver instructional content as well as some other nifty things. Next year, I will begin co-teaching with a Math, Science, and English teacher. We also are looking to purchase a Mac mobile lab to bring more inclusion students into 2.0. I would love to be a part of a group that discusses not only technology, but co teaching as well.
I am an inclusion teacher working in the 8th grade. This upcoming school year I will be coteaching English for 3 blocks. My coteacher and I are very excited to be together all day. Last year, during the school year, we cotaught for one block. We are going to try to use as much technology to reach our students. This summer we are collaborating on making power point presentations for our students, and other things to help teach all who need to learn, no matter how different their learning style may be.

I have been teaching in the inclusive setting for 12 years now, and it has been in 7th grade. I have mostly followed one group of students all day to all their academic classes. This past year I graduated to 8th grade, coteaching math (2 blocks) and English. We have mobile labs we can request to use in our classes, but that can be difficult. You need to plan 2 to 5 weeks in advance for when you need the mobile lab. We have a smart board, but that is even more limited as to our access for it.

I am very interested in what ways you can utilize technology other than a laptop or computer.
Welcome Connie! I'm so glad you joined us. I'm a firm supporter of inclusion and I understand your excitement about working together all day with your co-teacher. It is great that you and your co-teacher get along well and that you're representing yourselves as a team.

Lisa, my co-teacher, and I asked our students to rename us as a team for this very purpose. We're not just the general education teacher and the special education teacher, we're the South Paris Collaborative. (One of our students combined our names, stating he wanted to say he came from South Paris when he moved onto middle school next school year.) Lisa and I also created a collaborative website and created one e-mail address where all the students can reach both of us. Thanks for joining our group. Please feel free to invite your co-teacher. :D
Hello all, this year I will also be working, probably one lesson a week, with special ed students in our elementary school. I'm not sure yet whether this will be an inclusive class or a special ed class, however I'm not trained for either. Luckily my classes will be coming together with their teachers, the plan is that we build the technology curriculum together, to fit in with what is going on in the classroom, I will probably be visiting this group a lot to read up and ask questions.
That's hard. Is there anyeay that you can use the smartboard to show relevant videos, maps, teacher tube demos? That is a great way to share technology with your students without the mobile lab.
Hi I'm Jim Sprialis and I work for the Education Department in South Australia. I am a Project Officer in Communication and Learning Technologies for students with disabilities and learning difficulties. I started my career as an early childhood educator and 'fell' in to special education 8 years later. I have had teaching roles across all levels of schooling in this field. A major emphasis has always been technology - access tools, AAC devices, environmental control systems, etc.
In my current role, I service the entire state of South Australia. Its taken me to some great places including in to the middle of the country to remote indigenous communities.
I'm very much looking forward to what is my first real jump in to networking technologies.
I also thought I'd post some information I received from a listserv I subscribe to.........

New Mozilla email application with symbols.
> Is there community interest in using email with symbols?
> Mozilla have asked us to demonstrate interest.
> regards
> Jonathan Chetwynd
> Accessibility Consultant on Media Literacy and the Internet
You may wish to email Jonathon with your thoughts on this proposal.

Great to hear from you Jim. This new Mozilla tool sounds exciting. I think there are many students who would benefit from using symbols within their e-mail systems. I would love to find out more about how this works. I'm going to do some research on this.
Hi everyone, I am Harold Shaw and special education teacher from Averill High School at Good Will-Hinckley, (halfway between Waterville and Skowhegan, ME. We are a small private school that serves students who have not had success in the public school. -- Harold
Hi Harold,
What technologies do you have access to at your high school?
HI my name is Paula and I have been working in special educaiton for over 20 years. I have spent the last 20 or so working in the area of assistive technology - providing statewide leadership to the Wisconsin Assistive Technology Initiative and providing professional development to school districts. Lately I find myself working primarily in the area of technology integration for ALL students. I love using cutting edge technologies with students and then taking these same tools and making them work for students with disabilities. Looking forward to learning from this network.
We're so happy you're here Paula! What technologies are you using with your students? Are there any new/old tools that you think other special educators would be interested in learning about?



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