45 Teaching Strategies in 60 Minutes (Basic-Small - WEB-MBL (H264-400))
So it's 1 o'clock here and a beautiful, picture-perfect fall day in New England. This is Robin Sitten, from Perkins eLearning. So glad to have you all join us here today.
And I just want to give a little bit more information about our program, as we get started. For recording purposes, today is Wednesday-- uh, no, it is not. It is Tuesday, [LAUGH] November 8, 2016. Today's presentation, 45 Teaching Strategies in 60 Minutes.
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Today's presentation takes us on a tour of 45 teaching strategies in just under 60 minutes. Now, as always, this presentation is being recorded and will be available after the event. We hope you'll return to it many times over the coming weeks and months. It's going to generate a lot of ideas for you.
Let me review a couple of things about the technology. We keep noise levels in control by muting your lines. We will have, shortly, onscreen a question-and-answer space where you can post your questions throughout the presentation. And we encourage you to post them as they occur to you. I'll be gathering them and will address them at the end, during a Q&A time with Donna.
We are using this virtual meeting room for audio. There is also live captioning, onscreen, if captioning is helpful for you. You may make that box larger if you'd like to. Please make sure that your volume is on and turned up. You may find that external speakers or personal headphones give you the best audio.
You also have individual video controls for your screen. And part of this introduction is just to give you time to make those adjustments as you need them.
Donna will be joining us live soon. You can see her video, there, is paused right now. There may be times where audio and video are not in sync. This is usually an issue of network connectivity. It can be on your end. It can be on Donna's end. If you find that sort of disorienting, maybe, when it gets out of sync, you can always remove that video window. It usually corrects itself fairly quickly.
The PDF version of this slide presentation that Donna is sharing with us will also be available on the website. You want to look for those links in the thank-you email that will come to you after this event. Also look for a survey in there. We appreciate your feedback and your topic suggestions from these webinars.
It is my pleasure to introduce today's speaker and invite Donna McNear to enable her video, so she can join us, as well. Donna McNear is an MA and a [INAUDIBLE] She is an educational consultant providing technical assistance, nationally and internationally.
Her current interests are in the areas of accessibility, literacy, coaching, and children in the Pacific region. And we know we have some participants from the Pacific region with us today. Donna has received the Outstanding Leadership Award from the Council for Exceptional Children.
And now we'd like to learn a little bit about you, before we get underway. We have a couple of poll questions to ask. While my partner Fong sets those up, I'll just let you know you can just answer right on screen by clicking the choice.
Our first poll question, we'd like to ask, which one of these best describes your primary role with students who have disabilities? We know many of you serve several roles, but which of these would be considered your primary? We have Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Speech Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, Physical Therapist, Orientation and Mobility Instructor Special Education Teacher General Education Teacher, a Parent Trainer or Educator, a Parent, including a guardian or a family member, an Administrator-- you might be a superintendent or an agency administrator-- or a paraprofessional.
You can just go ahead and click your answers. It helps us know who's here. And, Donna, I'm seeing about 75% are answering Teacher of the Visually Impaired. That's about to be expected. But we're also seeing some O&Ms, some Special Ed teachers.
We've got a couple of Parent Trainer and Educators. That's always great to see. One parent with us today. An administrator. A couple of paraprofessionals. So we'll let a few people vote, and then we've got a second question to ask you.
Thanks very much. Fong, let's just go ahead and bring up the second question. We're also interested in which one of these best describes your primary teaching or learning environment. And again, knowing that you probably move between a lot of settings, which is the primary?
Are you working in-home intervention or home schooling? Are you in a general or inclusive education environment? That may be a public school or private school.
Are you in a special-education resource room, a specialized school, such as a school for the blind or a school for children with disabilities? Do you work in a hospital or rehabilitation center, an independent living environment, which may be transitional or permanent, or are you in the employment setting-- a job coach, a community-service volunteer, a volunteer coach?
We've got about 70% saying General and Inclusive Education. We also have about 15% in special education resource rooms, an equal number in specialized schools. We've got one person who's working in home schooling or in-home intervention. So most of those are in that area, Donna. But again, now, about 70% in general and inclusive education.
Thanks, Fong. Go ahead, Donna. Let us know what we can do in the 60 minutes I left you. [LAUGH]
Well, I first want to say thank you, Robin, very much for all your assistance in facilitating this webinar with me. And also to Mary and to Fong. So I appreciate your support in doing this and for inviting me. And I want to thank all the participants from all over the world for joining.
It's in the afternoon, here in Minnesota. I don't know where it is in the Pacific region right now, what part of the day it is. But thank you very much for joining us.
So I'm just going to get right onto the content, because 45 teaching strategies in 60 minutes will go fast. And I'm going to begin just by sharing a little bit about myself.
I live in Minnesota. I'm here in my home in Minnesota, right now. It's about an hour north of Minneapolis-St. Paul. And my background is in being itinerant teacher for children with visual impairment. And I am an orientation-and-mobility specialist.
But right now, for the past, I'd say, almost eight years, I've been working independently, and I provide technical assistance in a variety of contexts-- organizations, school districts, parents, nonprofits, state departments, and so forth. And so what I do is just-- the short answer to what I do is, I say I help people do good things for kids with visual impairments and get better at doing it.
So I do program improvement. I do instructional coaching. I'm a mentor to teachers. I'm a teacher trainer. And I'm also adjunct faculty in your neighborhood, at UMass Boston.
And I call myself an activist, because I am an advocate and I pay attention to policy and what's going on with supporting children who are blind and visually impaired in our world. And also I'm a Cubs fan. I have a photo with my Cubs hat on.
So, when I designed this content for all of you, my objectives were to identify strategies to improve effective teaching, because we all want to get better at what we're doing, regarding teaching, and then implement strategies to improve student results. So, these 45 strategies are about getting better student results, and to increase collaborative strategies with parents and all team members.
So about this presentation. I have a photo of an old gold prospector. And sometimes I feel like how this old man looks in the photo. And he's sifting through content, looking for gold nuggets. And I think that's what I've been doing for 40 years, is looking for the gold nuggets and the teaching strategies that make a difference with children.
So that's what these 45 strategies are. They're gold nuggets. And you can apply them for all kinds of kids and all kinds of contexts. So you can apply the strategies to kids who are blind and use braille, to kids who have low vision and maybe use print, and our students with additional disabilities. Can be applied to students with all ages, with all content, and in all environments.
So, it's about working smart. Because I know we all work hard. Certainly, the teachers who I'm working with, especially this year, everybody's working really, really hard.
But what I try to help them do, when I'm a mentor or provide technical assistance, is help people work SMART. And when I say "SMART," I mean work Systematically, in terms of organizing your teacher, working with Meaningful content to students and families, Arranged collaboratively-- especially those of us who are or were itinerant teachers, working collaboratively with teams is very, very critical. It's Results-focused, always looking at what our children are learning and doing, and it's Teaching effectively.
So, I'm just going to say one thing about informing our work, to set the stage for what I'm going to talk about. There are so many competing priorities for our time with children, in this day of accountability, especially with testing, with paperwork. And all these other responsibilities and competing priorities can interfere and take away our time with children.
So what I try and help people do is organize their work, so that they can continue to spend good-quality, effective, instructional time with children. So I just want to acknowledge that I understand all the pressures that we're under, as educators, and all the other activities that we do as teachers that interfere with our time with children. But I always am trying to think about how to increase our time with children.
And so, I'm going to say one more thing about gold nuggets. And it's about looking at what accomplished teachers focus on, in terms of all their work with the competing priorities, and that's instruction. So I use the term "accomplished teachers" because it comes from my work that I've done in the past with the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards. Because we want to go from being beginning teachers to accomplished teachers.
And one of the ideas I want to share with you is that accomplished teachers are able to describe what they teach, where they teach, how they teach, and why they teach. So what I've tried to do, through the years, with my teaching career, is be intentional and deliberate about being able to talk my craft, to be able to discern what it is that I do and be able to describe and share that with others, so that we have this professional language that talks about what we do and how we know it makes a difference with children.
So I'm going to begin right off with strategy number one. And that is, be systematic, with an overall approach to instruction. So what I'm sharing with you in the diagram is a circle with four components. And if you start in the upper-left component, it says "Reflective practice," and the R is large.
So, if you go around the circle, it spells the word "RICE." So I am always trying to do mnemonics, to help me be able to talk my craft and understand what I do as a teacher. So I use this model of RICE. So R stands for Reflective practice, I stands for Instructional coaching, C stands for Collaboration, and E for Effective instruction.
So, when I talk my craft and talk about how to be systematic with how I approach teaching children, I use this RICE approach. And then I'm able to remember what it is I want to say about what I do as a teacher for children who are blind and visually impaired. But these 45 strategies will focus on the area only of effective instruction, because that's about our time with children, and that's where we make a difference with our children.
So, my agenda this afternoon with you will be in four areas of instruction. So, when I think about instruction, I think about planning instruction, managing instruction, delivering instruction, and evaluating instruction. And I'm going to begin with not starting at the top, which is Planning Instruction, but I'm going to begin with Delivering Instruction, because that's so important to talk about.
What does it look like when we show up to teach children? What does our time with children look like? And why I want to emphasize that is because, so often, especially in our field, where managing instruction and planning instruction can take so much of our time, I really want to begin with emphasizing the importance of delivering instruction and what it looks like when we're with children.
So, I'm also going to share with you an instructional planning tool that you can download. And it's more than a handout, to me. So, Fong, if you could put it up for a couple of minutes, please, I'd appreciate it.
So this is a tool, an instructional tool, you can use. And it's a work in progress, but it has all the 45 strategies listed in a column on the left-hand side. And I've included some elaborations and some considerations. Now I just call this a "work in progress" because as I'm developing content I'm adding to this worksheet.
So, what I want to share with as teachers is, just start putting your content together. It doesn't always have to be in its final form. It can be what we're developing. It can be what we're trying to achieve. But don't be concerned about always having a final product. Start sharing what's working for you, so others can take it and learn from it.
So we can go back to the PowerPoint, please. Thank you, Fong! So, that is a tool that you can download.
So I'm going to begin with some overall instructional strategies. And I have a photo of a chessboard, to think about the big picture, in terms of teaching. So, strategy number two is Increase Frequency. And this is probably one of the most important strategies that I share when I do technical assistance and one of the things I help teens and teachers try to increase.
And I have a photo in a display, there, of what's called a "spelling menu." Because, to share what I mean by Increase Frequency, I want to talk to you about how mainly first- and second-grade teachers teach spelling. So they start on Monday, and they introduce the spelling words to the children. And all week long they do a variety of things. They do it in reading, they do it in other aspects of English-language arts, and writing.
And they may include it in math. They may include it in other subject matters, such as Social Studies. But they include the spelling words in many, many ways throughout the week. So that, by the time Friday comes around, they are hoping and expecting that the students in their class will be able to spell the spelling words that were introduced on Monday with generally 90% accuracy.
And so I want you to think about, especially those of us who have worked in itinerant contexts, what this means to us when we're trying to increase the frequency for our students, when we may not see them with a great amount of frequency. So that's one of the reasons why I emphasize collaboration. And I'll talk about that as we move forward.
But if you look at this spelling menu that's displayed, you're also going to notice that there's quite a variety of ways that the spelling words are used in instruction. So that segues me to strategy number three, which is Increase Variety. So, between frequency and variety, those are really, really two critical variables that will increase student results.
So, when I talk about Increase Variety, think about your instruction, and how can you increase the variety of presentation methods, the variety of materials, and the variety of formats. And this again can be challenging to teachers who are itinerant, because you have to bring everything that you're going to use for teaching. But there's a photograph, here, that examines and looks at and represents variety that can be done in instruction. And this happens to be some--
I was supporting some tutoring, this past summer. This was past June. And we were emphasizing some braille literacy activities. The student who's blind, in the photo, is-- I'm going to get my cursor, here, for you. Actually, there's a little girl, right back here, who's blind. And this little boy, here, is blind.
And we're doing a scavenger hunt. And I was employing my grandkids. This is Aidan, and this is Olivia. And these are children of my community, and I've been working with this family for a number of years.
So we were bringing braille literacy into a fun summer activity of a scavenger hunt. And so they were reading and using braille but having a blast doing it. So, think about all the ways that you can teach kids to increase variety.
So, strategy number four is Use Quick Tasks. And I'm going to take a moment to just read a definition of "quick tasks." This is a term I came up with that really emphasizes how you can increase and think about implementing frequency and variety. So, this comes on your tool that you have, too.
So quick tasks are a series of portable teaching activities that are easily and seamlessly delivered in many contexts. This teaching strategy combines the effective instructional elements of frequency and variety. And I also include immersion and duration. It is a method for embedding a student's instructional goals and objectives into specialized instruction that is integrated throughout the student's day.
And what I've displayed is a handout that I've used in the past that just lists the quick tasks that a student needs to work on. And it was the variety of activities that needed to be done. And what I do generally is have a bin-- and I apologize, I don't have a photograph of this.
I generally have a bin. And in the bin I use zippered bags. And in each zipper bag is a teaching activity, with everything that needs to be taught for a particular task that needs to be done.
And so, that way, if I'm working with a general-education teacher, a special-education teacher, a paraprofessional, I can just leave this bin and all the directions for teaching a task-- and, of course, I've role-modeled what it is they need to be teaching, and I've coached them, also. And then I leave it with them. And then they can try and increase the opportunities the student has to practice whatever it is they're learning and what they need to know and do.
So it might be braille contractions, it might be some Nemeth math problems, and, now, maybe it's UEB content. So, I really encourage using the concept of quick tasks, so that you can embed your instruction, especially if you happen not to be there. Now, if you have your own classroom, it's just an easy way to organize your instruction and your materials so that, if you find you have five minutes, you can quickly review something, provide another opportunity for a lesson or some content that the student needs to learn.
So, I'm going to share a few things about the physical environment and planning with detail. And I have a photograph, here, of when I was doing some substitute tutoring for a person who I was working with and coaching, this summer. And you're seeing a mess. And this happens to be in the home of a mom who has two kids who are blind. And you're seeing why it's so important to organize the physical environment, because I did not have the opportunity to plan with detail. And so I'm going to share a few strategies around that.
So strategy five is Begin with Furniture. So, frequently, when I go into a school and I'm providing some technical assistance or mentorship or consultation around a student, the first thing I look at is furniture. And it's not unusual then, at the end of the day, when I've worked with the teacher, that they stay afterwards with the custodian, and they go looking for other furniture or adjusting it. Because we know it's so, so important for kids to be independent and maximize their learning, that everything's at the right height, and that it's accessible.
And so in this photograph is just one setup of how they used furniture. It was two tables, so that this was a boy who was integrated in a-- I believe it was a second-grade classroom. And this is what his setup looked like.
So, think with detail. Be intentional. Be deliberate about the size of the furniture, the size of the chair, how the student is sitting. I frequently have to lower the working surface, so that it's easy for kids to write and read braille.
So, strategy number six is Creating Student Access to Materials. So it's very, very important that things don't magically appear for our students, that they're learning responsibility along with all their peers. And so, this is a photo of just one setup that was done for a student.
And you can see he's independently probably putting a book away. And that whole shelf system that you see, on the left-hand side of the photograph, are all materials for him. So we always have to be kind to our classroom teachers and work with them, to get some space. And they're usually very kind and want to help us out.
So, strategy number seven is probably one of the most important strategies, next to Frequency and Variety. So, I'm also going to tell you that this is a strategy that can make people itch and twitch when I'm there, to provide technical assistance, because what I really, really encourage is, teachers and peer professionals not sitting next to students when they instruct. And in this photograph you're seeing a teacher who I mentored for several years.
And this happens to be a space, off of a resource room, where a student came for some specialized intensive instructional braille instruction in reading and writing. And so you see the teacher is standing, even though she's working with a student one on one. Because I really think it's important, for that stepping in, stepping out concept, to not be sitting next to students, because students then learn that they can read and write independently. Somebody doesn't need to be sitting next to them, in order for them to read and write. And it's been very effective, in terms of increasing all kinds of student behavior, from maybe some behavior-- behaviors that may interfere with learning. If you're not in their space, sometimes that supports them.
You can step in and step out, to provide manual guidance, if that's something you need to do. It's also, if you can step away from the student, it discourages conversation-- that sometimes our students get really good at, is trying to distract from the task at hand. So, I really, really encourage you to think about how you can manage the element of proximity to help your students be more independent and get better student results.
So, I'm going to talk a little bit about some other instructional variables. And [LAUGH] I just absolutely love this photograph I put in the bathroom. This was a photograph I took. If you see, it says "Toilet Talk Number Four."
It's a photograph of a poster that was actually in a bathroom stall of a girls' bathroom in a school I was working in last year. And I happened to just go into a regular kid's bathroom, and there was some opportunities for incidental learning and creating opportunities for all kids. And so, when I see an item like that in a school, I always think about, what does that mean for our kids who are visually impaired? And how can we give them access to this kind of instruction that sighted kids get access to all the time? So I hope you can have a little fun with that Toilet Talk.
So, strategy number eight talks about Supportive Instruction. And so, what I mean by that is how our instruction evolves with kids, from initial instruction to when we expect mastery. Because it should look very different.
And one of the things I encourage teachers to do, when I mentor them, is to think about how you provide supportive instruction when you're first initiating a concept and then how that should change over time. So, one of the things I just, to illustrate this point, I want to share with you is in the area of orientation and mobility.
So, for example, if I'm teaching a route to a child, let's say, inside a school building, that initial instruction is very supportive, and that I'm providing and giving a lot of information. I'm not generally asking a lot of questions. I just want to narrate the environment, describe the concepts, describe what the turns are, describe what I expect-- just give information.
But then, as I expect the student to learn it and be more independent, I start to take away some of those supports. So, if we think about the term of scaffolding instruction, along with supportive instruction. So you start taking away some of those scaffolds. So, at the end of the time when I expect mastery of that route, I expect to observe the student doing the route without any supports from me.
So, that's how I illustrate the example from initial to mastery supportive instruction. So, I try to help teachers think about that. What does it look like when you're first teaching a concept? And then, what does it look like when you expect mastery?
Because one of the things that I think happens too often is, we ask too many questions of a student before they have had the instruction. And I can tell you that a lot of the students who I work with and support, they want to feel confident. And when we ask too many questions at the beginning of instruction that they can't answer, it intimidates them, and they feel like they're not successful. So, I encourage you to think about this strategy.
So strategy nine is Levels of Instruction. So this comes from the area of teaching reading, when we think about frustrational levels, instructional levels, and independent levels. And I'm always thinking about this when I'm supporting kids and teachers, because we know that when kids are learning at their frustrational level, it doesn't work well for them. So we really want to focus our instruction at their instructional level and move forward from there.
So, I think I'm going to have to talk a little less about each slide, because I'm watching the time. So strategy number 10 is Provide Independent Practice. You know, so often, especially when we're sitting next to students for maybe the whole half hour that we're supposed to instruct them, we don't give them the opportunity to practice what we're teaching them, independently. So that's another reason why to step aside and let them have time to do some work independently.
You know, so often, we think that, when we have limited time with children, that we need to be interacting with them the whole time. But part of good teaching is providing independent practice time. So I encourage you to think about, after you've done your instruction, how you can provide time for independent practice and insert that into your teaching routines.
So strategy number 11 is Use Procedures and Routines. And in this photograph you see a teacher from one of the Western Pacific islands, who came and lived in my county this past summer for three weeks and did some tutoring. And I supported her in doing some tutoring with two children who are blind.
And one of the things that I really encourage beginning teachers, and all teachers, to think about and use is procedures and routines. And we know that that's so effective with kids, because it creates predictability. Our kids love predictability.
So what you see here is Chelsea instructing a student and doing some sorting, as she was doing some tactile-discrimination activities and doing some sorting. So this particular procedure and routines comes from the TEACCH strategies, T-E-A-C-C-H. And some of those strategies come from the field of autism, but some of that good teaching is applicable to many, many students.
And the student here really, really liked the procedures and routines of having what we would call a "start bin," where all her materials would first be located. And then there was her work area. In this case, you see in the photo, there's three trays for sorting. And then there's the finish bin. And that is a strategy that works well for many, many children.
So strategy number 12 is Provide a Model. Not often we give directions to students and provide information for work they need to do, verbally. And so I really encourage you, whether you're working with children who use braille or they're using print or a combination, that you look at whatever it is you're teaching and whatever you want the kids to be able to do is provide a model.
And, just to illustrate the importance of this, just think about yourself, even as an adult learner. If you go to do something new, frequently-- let's say, if I'm going to write a document that I haven't written before, one of the first things I do is I go search the internet for a similar document, for a model that I can use. So I want you to think about how we can be more intentional about providing models for our students.
So strategy 13 is Use Task Analysis. And I have a picture of a golf club.
I'm a golfer. And one of the things that you always want to do, when you're hitting a ball with your golf club, is find the sweet spot. That's the spot where your golf ball just takes off and flies high. And you can tell when you hit it. It feels good. It sounds just right.
So, when we use task analysis, I want you to think about breaking it down, whatever it is you're teaching, and finding that sweet spot. So, knowing what a student knows and where is that spot that the student falls off and then starts [INAUDIBLE] and being challenged. Because that's the point that's the sweet spot for instruction, and that's where we need to hone and focus on our strategies.
So, I want you to think about why we use task analysis. It's to find that spot where we really, really need to focus our instruction.
So strategy 14 is Using Incentives. So, often, we think that rewards aren't necessary or are fluff. But most of us, in life, use incentives to encourage us to do some tasks maybe we're not really motivated to do.
And in this photograph we see Chelsea, who was doing some braille instruction with Ethan. And she was rewarding him by playing a game, a favorite game, with him. And so I really encourage you to think about the variety of incentives you can use, how you can give what we call sometimes "brain breaks."
And yet, even though she's giving a break and considering this an incentive, it still is part of instruction because they're working on turn-taking. She was guiding him in a new way of playing the game. And so think about how you can integrate, into your procedures and routines, the use of incentives.
So strategy 15 is Use Varied Prompts. So this is something that's really, really important to me. I spend a lot of time teaching kids-- teachers-- about a variety of prompts. So, one of the things I encourage teachers to do is use [INAUDIBLE] praise.
So it's beyond "good job." It's saying things-- I really like how you're sitting with your hand on the braille. I really like how you're holding your head up when you're sitting.
So it's being very explicit about what it is that a child or a student is doing that's working well. Because "good job" to somebody who may not see what others is doing becomes less relevant.
So the other thing about prompts sometimes is to limit question-asking. Because our kids get so many questions. Instead, use the phrase "tell me" or "show me," and you may get more information from the student.
And then the other area that I want to include in [INAUDIBLE] Using Varied Prompts is for you to think about correction procedures. So, when a student doesn't get the right answer, is, how do you correct that student in a positive way?
So it would be, like, "nice try. Can you give me another answer?" Or "I like how you thought about that question. I want you to think about another answer you might give me." So think about how you can use correction procedures as prompts, in a positive way.
So-- um-- whoops! I lost my-- there we go. So strategy 16 is Creating Turn-Taking Opportunities. So often, so many of us work with students one on one. And it really does limit that natural turn-taking opportunities that are so important for learning.
So, in this photo, you see three young boys. They're in a home, and they're sitting around a Mountbatten braille writer. And actually a student who is blind is off to the side. He already had his turn brailling, so then his older brother had a turn. And this happens to be my grandson, who I had brought along so that I could do some turn-taking opportunities.
So think, when you're teaching-- and even if it's just you who's in the room-- how can you insert yourself into doing turn-taking with whatever you're teaching, so that you can create a more natural kind of dynamic for learning? And kids really, really enjoy that.
So I'm going to say a few things specifically around kids who are blind and use braille. So strategy 17 is around tactile discrimination. And I want to emphasize that, when we are teaching beginning braille reading skills, to really emphasize what fits under the fingertips. If we want kids to get better with tactile discrimination for braille, we have to really hone in on what fits under their fingertip.
So it's really fun to think about all the other cute materials for learning about the concepts of braille, but kids learn the concepts of braille by what fits under their fingertip. The brain has to connect with what's under a fingertip. So, I really can't emphasize this enough.
So, strategy 18 is what I call "Poster Prompts." This is a term I came up with. And here you see a student who's doing some writing on a braille notetaker. And he's working from a braille worksheet.
And off to the left, from where his hand is, is a really small piece of paper. And on it is a word that he frequently misspells. So, instead of needing somebody to be in his space, to always tell and give verbal supports, we increased kids' opportunity to learn on their own by giving them an example, a reference, that they can go to independently and use as a reminder.
So sometimes I use poster prompts when kids are struggling with reversals with braille, sometimes when-- and so I use a mnemonic, kind of, to help orient them, so they can use it as a reference, as to whether they're looking at, like, an H or a J or a 5 or a 9. And anything, if a student is struggling with using punctuation, I may give examples of punctuation in a poster prompt.
So, I also teach copying, specifically, especially for kids who are blind. Because if you look at a typical learning environment-- and this is a kindergarten room-- there's so many visuals that sighted kids can copy to help them do their reading and writing. So, so often, we miss that step with kids who are blind, but we should deliberately teach copying. It will help especially with their writing skills and accuracy and writing with detail. So, think about that.
So strategy 20 is Anchor Materials. One of the reasons why I see people in close proximity to students is because they're holding things in place. And here you see painter's tape. I always have a role of painter's tape with me.
And you see a photograph of, this is on an airplane, and I was sitting next to a mom who created a whole play space with the materials that were in the airplane, just by fastening them with painter's tape. And so, I'm anchoring materials in place all the time, using painter's tape.
And in the photograph above, you just see a magnetic board and magnets. So I use magnets a lot, and I use Velcro a lot.
So, I'm going to share just a few strategies around low vision. And so strategy 21 is Begin Accommodations Early. So, a lot of times, our students who are entering their teenage years really push back on using accommodations. And so I've seen the biggest effect by beginning accommodations early for kids with low vision.
And I use small whiteboards a lot, so that kids can copy and write on a whiteboard. Or if we have to bring concepts up close to them in real-time instruction, a whiteboard is a real easy way to do that.
Strategy number 22 is Think Multiple Solutions. And in this photograph you see a student who is a print reader and a braille reader and using a lot of technology. So she was using an iPad for doing some spelling words, she was reading the spelling words on a braille copy, and then she also had a computer with a large screen for viewing what would be displayed in the classroom. So, think multiple solutions for kids with low vision.
And then Provide Specialized Instruction. So, sometimes people drop off equipment, drop off tools, because we're busy, and move on. But I really encourage our students who have low vision who may primarily just need accommodations, that we provide that specialized instruction in using those tools that kids with low vision need to use.
So, I'm going to just share a few strategies around our students with additional learning challenges. You see a display, here, of tactile symbols. And I just want to share that I think one of the most underused teaching strategies that I think that is not used is using tactile symbols, for many students who struggle with learning. They can really make a difference to students. Now, that's not one of my strategies, but I just wanted to push that in in this way.
So, strategy number 24 is Highly Preferred. And I'm showing you a magnetic recorder. This is called a Can-Do Recorder, and it's not available anymore. There's one that's still available.
But this is one of my favorite tools to use that's not high-tech. And it comes from the speech and language field. You can use voice, along with tactile skills, and really maximize what is preferred by a student using a tool like this. But think about how you can use materials that are highly preferred by a student who has additional learning challenges, because you can frequently get better results.
And so the other element is to individualize content. And here was a student who was beginning some braille instruction but liked to go to a restaurant. So here was, we were playing, doing some imaginative play, using a modified menu and individualizing the content to what his preferred food items were.
And then strategy 26 is, I provide intensive training supports. And in this slide you see a model of coaching that I develop and use when I'm working with anybody who's the learner-- so, a peer professional, another teacher, a colleague. And to explain that this would take more time, but I just want to encourage you that, when we work with others, and when we role-release to others, that it's important to go beyond just telling. It's important to coach and show them how to do it.
And so, just reviewing some items under Working SMART. I talked about these strategies up to now, to help us work Systematically, strategies that are Meaningful to students and families. They're Arranged collaboratively, working with others in their classrooms. They're Results-focused on how kids learn. And it's around Teaching effectively.
So, I'm going to move to Evaluate Instruction. And strategy 27 is Evaluate with Accuracy and Detail. This is an example of doing a qualitive analysis of a braille reader. And so, we look at substitutions, insertions, omissions.
And this is what you'd normally look at in a reading passage. But over on the right, I have Braille Errors and Confusers and Braille Errors and Contractions. And so think about how you can evaluate, with greater accuracy, in greater detail, in order to get to that sweet spot that I talk about, in terms of instruction.
So strategy 28 is, in terms of evaluation, Think Formative and Summative. Find ways to know how your student is learning, before they get to the final standardized test which would be summative. But make sure that you're doing enough assessment and information-gathering, so that you know how your student is progressing along the way.
So strategy 29, then, is to look at that, how your student is performing, in a variety of contexts. So, if you're working on reading and writing, for example, look at how the student is reading and writing in English-language arts but also, how are they doing in math? How are they doing with nonacademics?
And then how are they reading and writing at home? And how can you all work together, to increase how a student is progressing in all areas?
Strategy 30 is to Collect Data Systematically, in order to know how a student is progressing. So I frequently tell people to think about Data Wednesday, because kids are most often in school on Wednesdays.
So strategy 31 is to Adjust Instruction if you find out student's not learning. If a child can't learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn. I think many of you have seen that quoted. It really is a truthism and a really important guide to thinking about instruction.
And then I'm going to talk a little bit about planning instruction. And what I want you to think about is applying an integrated view of instruction in that, for example, when looking at the English-language arts, reading, writing, listening, and speaking all occur at the same time. It's not a hierarchy of learning or a linear way of learning. And so think about how you can integrate all these areas for student learning.
And strategy 33 is Use Rubrics to help evaluate your teaching and what a student is learning. And create them when you create an objective, so that you know how to collect data.
And strategy 34 is Use Curriculum as a Foundation. So often, we have to look at access for our students. And sometimes we need to modify curriculum. And sometimes when we modify curriculum, we use other ways of learning, and it can sometimes become a little less organized. So, if we stick to curriculum, then we can keep our teaching intentional and deliberate and organized.
So strategy 35 is Take Time to Plan for Access and Accommodations. Think about access other than providing verbal access, all the tools and materials that we need to use for kids. And it takes planning. And strategy 36 is Plan for Participation.
So access and participation are really two different items. And participation-- I mean, you can give kids all the access, with all kinds of tools, but sometimes they then are not participating in the curriculum the way they should with that access. So, think about how you can plan participation.
And so strategy 37 is Plan for Collaboration. And in this photo is just an example of how a team of people planned collaboratively. It was a Social Studies teacher, it was a Special Education teacher, it was a parent, and it was an itinerant teacher for a visually impaired, of how to create access and participation to a geography unit.
And then, when you make materials, think about making two. It's a quick way to increase the variety of materials you have for doing more teaching activities So, if I'm making a flash card, for example-- let's just say the alphabet-- I make two. Because then I can do matching, I can do sorting, I can talk about same and different. I can do all kinds of things.
Strategy 39 is Be Prepared for Real-Time Instruction. Think about what you need to create to provide access to when a teacher may change their instruction, when they're actually delivering it.
And then a couple things on managing instruction. Don't just consider English-language arts and math. Consider all environments, all subjects.
This was providing access participation in an art activity. And this was a drawing that a student created with tactiles. This is a bed, this is the headboard, and this is the child's head and body and arms and lower body, lying in the bed.
And strategy 41 is Vary Your Schedule. This is a teacher who varied her schedule to show up and participate in a science class. So, this student, who's visually impaired, could work with her peers on an activity. So the teacher varied her schedule so she could show up and support the student in peer supports in the classroom.
So, in order to do that, I use a phrase-- and this is called strategy 42-- called "Chunk for Change." And sometimes you have to show up every day, to make a change for a student, rather than show up once a week or once a month. So think about how you can chunk your time to create change and then move on to another student.
And strategy 43 is Use Peer Supports and Multi-Age Supports. And you just see a photo-- when I was teaching braille skills to the student in front, who was blind, I used my grandkids and gave them canes, and we all worked on orientation and mobility together and had a blast.
And strategy 44 is Do Community-Based Touch Tours. You don't need to be an orientation-and-mobility specialist to create variety by getting out in the community and giving kids more access to environmental concepts and experiences and ideas.
So, strategy 45 is, take that instructional planning tool. I think it's in a Word format, as well as a PDF. And make it yours. Print it out, keep it accessible, and review it with your-- if you're struggling with teaching a student and how to get better results, just go through that instructional planning tool and see how it can give you some ideas.
So, in reviewing this Working SMART webinar, I hope that you're getting some ideas to teach systematically with greater meaning and greater collaboration with others, get better results with kids, and increase your effective teaching. So I want to thank you. And here's my email, if you need it and have any follow-up questions.
So, I went over a couple minutes, Robin, so [LAUGH] I don't know if we have time for questions, or how do you want to handle this now?
I was trying to get my mute on. You guys didn't think she was going to make it, there, 45. [LAUGH] So we do have some questions coming in. And I really appreciate all of you staying to the end. I'm just going to do these really quickly.
Joan asks "Where is the instructional-tool document located?" I can take that one. You'll find it in two places, Joan. One is, there is a Download box right underneath the Q&A window on your screen. If you highlight the name of that file, "dmseries_45," you'll see a Download File button. You can download it right now.
You can also get it-- it'll be in your thank-you email that will come tomorrow. There'll be a download there and a download on our website. And I believe, yeah, Jill had the same question. So you can either download that right now or, if you're not at your own computer, you can look for that to come on the website.
I just wanted to say a couple of things, Donna, just for myself. In a lot of your strategies, you show involving peers, friends, classmates in these teaching strategies. And it's really nice to see not just the inclusivity of including all the kids, but I think it's--
I'll tell you when it struck me, was just looking at that picture of the three kids using a cane. I think it's also helpful for your student who's blind to know that, you know what? It's hard for everybody. [LAUGH] Learning cane techniques, or learning braille, or learning science is hard. And it's not necessarily just because you have a visual impairment or some kind of disability. So that picture really struck me personally.
And I also--
Oh, you're welcome. I also wanted to say to the group that you mentioned a lot about tactile symbols. We do have a number of resources about tactile symbols on our website and on our many communities of practice. So, take a look at Perkins eLearning for some of those things.
Any other questions? I know people-- your time is very precious, and I know a lot of you need to drop off, but I'll pause for just a couple of more questions if there are any. As Donna mentioned, she's shared her email with you. Also, the presentation, the strategies document, and the recording of this presentation will be available on our website, tomorrow or the next day.
OK, great. See, no more questions. I want to thank you, Donna, for your time. This is a beautiful presentation, and we've really enjoyed working with you. I see a lot of thank-yous are now coming into the Q&A box. That's always nice to see.
And so I invite all of you to join us again for our next webinar. Let's see, I'm getting another question, here. "Coaching Simplified," Donna, is that the same document? Or is that a different document that you referred to?
I mean, they'll have a copy of that photo on the PowerPoint, because they'll have access to it there. I have it as a separate Word file. If somebody wants it, they can email me.
That's a great idea. So, if you are interested in that coaching document--
And yes to the question, the PowerPoint is available. It will be available on our website, the slides that you see here.
So I've got to wrap it up, so that Donna can get back to strategy 46-- [LAUGH] which is Always Be Learning. On behalf of my partner, Fong [? Wing, ?] who runs the controls, Dr. Mary Zatta, and all of us on the Perkins eLearning team, thank you so much. We'll see you next time. Bye!
Thank you, Robin. Bye, to everybody.