Highlight text to annotate itX
(Narrator) We brought educators together to discuss their experiences
with implementing assistive technologies in the classroom.
In this segment they're talking
about how to make a classroom an inclusive environment.
How does a teacher
turn exclusive into inclusive
as it pertains to assistive technology in students in their classroom?
I really feel as a classroom teacher
you just, you need to be open.
It's really difficult at first or it can be stressful
to find out, oh, you're going to have students
with laptops in your classroom.
And you just have to go with it.
You have to make the student feel as comfortable as possible
and you might have to bring a computer home
and, excuse me, figure stuff out, for yourselves, so you feel better prepared,
but allow the students to ask you questions and,
and if you don't know the answer, it, find someone who will know,
because the more you're comfortable, the student's comfortable,
and if it just seems like a normal classroom to have the computers,
then it's inviting, and the student's not stressed whatsoever.
It's - if you don't make a huge production of it,
I found in grade 7 - 8, that it's, "We have computers now, and here we go!"
And they sit wherever they want, which is essential.
I won't put them in groups, and, "This is the computer group."
It just doesn't happen that way. You just have to,
like every other day, make your classroom open, inviting and available
for all the students, laptop or not.
Very good, thank you.
As a trainer or, um, resource teacher
working directly with a student
in preparing them for that next step,
we really have to, um, be,
um, be aware of their feelings
around going into the classroom with that, so, um,
every student is different and you involve them in that process as well.
For some students it meant that we needed to go into the classroom
and do a demonstration for the whole class for others
and, would mean that we would go in
and as trainers, or as slash resource teachers,
it, we would actually then go in and model,
model for the classroom teacher but sit with the student
and really, um, be there for a period of time
where we would, um, engage them in specific tasks,
but be there with them so that they are starting to develop the, uh, comfort,
but also know how to use the tools within the classroom.
And for other students, it meant that they felt
that they had the confidence and were ready.
They were off, they grabbed their laptops and then they went and, uh,
they have, within a short period of time, come to rely
and see the need for assistive technology within the classroom.
They don't go in without it now.
Monique, if I can just add to that,
uh, at our, in our elementary school
last year, ah, teachers decided, um,
they didn't have that comfort level just yet,
and so I provided, um, some workshops
quick workshops for them, on, uh, certain programs
that were also in the, um, that we have on the network,
as well as those students had in their laptops
and we did a little bit of team teaching as well.
We went into that computer lab, the whole entire class,
they were working on, for example, "Smart Ideas",
um, and we taught it to the whole class.
And then the student, you know, who was previously trained
already, you know, knew a lot of the components of that,
and was able to become a leader, and - oh, you know, "I can help you out."
It became the whole class then.
Everybody was kind of working on it.
It worked very well. It was very successful...
I think from a school administrator's
point of view, um, the inclusiveness
of assistive technology
in the day to day operations of the school
is really part of the school's attitude about inclusivity overall.
And a school culture is not static. It can change.
And through time and process and opportunity
we can see teachers latching onto the idea of assistive technology
and seeing its benefits and wanting to learn more.
So I think it's part of that overall culture of a school
and how it can change to assist these kids.
Prior to the use of assistive technology,
our students, um, were required at times to have to actually
come out of the classroom for the opportunity for reteaching
and for them to be able to have an opportunity
to learn the material differently.
Um, now with assistive technology,
our students are able to remain within the regular classroom
and they're part of what's going on. They're not missing the activities.
They are completing the activities in, and that's just a, a great way
of being able to differentiate for them, and they're feeling very included.
(Narrator) Thanks for watching.
You may wish to look at the other videos in this series
and browse through the resources available on our website.
captioned by inclusivemedia.ca