Sunday, September 26, 2010

iAccess- Is That an iPod....

....why yes it is.
This year I decided to purposefully start using iPods in my classes. The main intention for the use of the iPod as an access tool & assistive technology device is as follows:
  1. To increase access to content area learning, 
  2. To provide a gateway to reading and math proficiency.
  3. To assist students in developing strategies for task performance.
  4. Create opportunities for self-monitoring, self-reflection, empowerment, and independence 
  5. They're pretty cool.
  6. ....
As many may know I am a special educator. I teach across content areas, provide intensive intervention in math, reading, social skills (affective needs), collaborate through consultation on behavior, differentiation, accommodation and modification, etc. Reading and math intervention tools such as Corrective Reading, Language!, Math Navigator and others have become tools of the trade for special and general educators alike. Well, sometimes these interventions can come across pretty bland. Lets face it, these tools for intervention, used as a tier 2 or 3 can be cumbersome, dry and lead to continued academic apathy in kids who already have low motivation for school.

Over the course of the year I intend to build interest and motivation related not only to the aforementioned types of academic interventions, but to foster and establish an interest in the ownership of education. I do not presume by any means that the iPod/iPad is a "magic pill" that will eliminate all academic problems. To do so would be naive. I do however believe in the power of access. It is my sincere belief that tools such as the iPod and iPad can impact student achievement, student perceptions of school, the conceptions of self and ability, while providing them tools for independence, collaboration, and preparation for the possibilities and opportunities that await them in adulthood.

As we look at building capacity within our models of schooling and developing effective, sustainable systems of intervention and practice, I feel strongly that these tools can provide not only the intangibles necessary for educational motivation but for content knowledge and academic growth.

So, please stay tuned as we embark on this adventure through a world of possibilities, opportunities, and exploration.


  1. This is a fantastic opportunity for you to see what I have been experiencing for the past two years. These devices can really level the playing field for students of differing abilities by providing them access to what they need when they need it. It also helps that it is in a form factor they love and would choose to work on, instead of an aging grey box at the back of the room. I'll be reading about your progress. Way to go!

  2. Mr. Keenan, thanks for the encouragement. It is very exciting to build systems within our schools. There is often a "status-quo" expectation in our schools which isn't really working for many kids these days. Technology and ease of access is so infused within our society that it is truly a crime not to embrace new technologies.

    I look forward to keeping in touch. I'm certain I will need consultation from educators such as yourself.

    Thanks again, Matt