Tag Archive: classroom

Video of the Week: Analyzing the Communication Environment

November 8, 2017 by - 2 Comments

Video of the Week: Analyzing the Communication Environment

For AAC learners, one of the most important things we can do to facilitate communication and language growth is to ensure the presence of supportive strategies throughout the school day. Today, we turn to Project ACCESS, from the Florida Department of Education, to learn more about a tool that we can use to analyze key elements of the communication environment. The Design to Learn Environmental Inventory was created by Dr. Charity Rowland (see also the Communication Matrix) and Philip Schweigert. You can learn more about this tool, what it covers, and how to use it in this 2-part series. It was created by Project ACCESS, funded by the Florida Bureau of Exceptional Education and Student Services, which focuses on helping educational personnel better understand the alternate achievement standards for students with significant cognitive disabilities. Design to Learn Environmental Inventory, Part 1 Part 2 We are grateful to the Florida DOE... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: AT Tools in the Classroom

October 11, 2017 by - 1 Comment

Video of the Week: AT Tools in the Classroom

Would it be helpful to have an overview of some of the most common AT tools in classrooms? Stay tuned! Today’s post features Sharon Plante, and covers a wide range of AT tools that are used for reading, writing, executive functioning, and more. Many thanks to the Center on Technology and Disability for making this available. Direct Link to Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qyfDRWatUwU 

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Video of the Week: Real Life AAC

September 6, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Real Life AAC

Throughout the world, teachers, therapists, and parents are busy doing the real work of AAC. Making sure AAC materials are available all day long. Modeling language with SGDs, apps, and communication boards. Let’s take a peek into their classrooms, therapy rooms, and homes. Macomb Intermediate Schools   Shared Reading   Shared Reading with the Comment-Ask-Respond Strategy   Sentences After School Pop-up Pirate    

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Video of the Week: Keep It Fun, Flexible, & Available. AAC All Day Long in the Special Needs Classroom

August 30, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Keep It Fun, Flexible, & Available. AAC All Day Long in the Special Needs Classroom

How do we make it feasible to implement AAC throughout the school day? Arizona-based SLP Anne Page, of Beautiful Speech Life, has some ideas for us. This presentation is packed full of prAACtical tips and was made possible by CoughDrop’s AAC in the Cloud Conference. Many thanks to Anne and to CoughDrop for sharing this positive approach to AAC in the classroom! Enjoy! Direct Link to Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohvOfkyejso&list=PL8oiM_hsU8kYofdlpC4vcYX49yuBZvv9v&index=10

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How I Do It: A Year of Core Words in Action

June 15, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

How I Do It: A Year of Core Words in Action

Some of the best resources are the ones that we can modify to use in ways that fit our own specific needs. In this post, SLP Kim Hurley, a graduate of Indiana University, shares her experiences in experimenting with the Year of Core Vocabulary approach. Kim has spent the past 15 years as a specialist for students with moderate and severe disabilities or complex communication needs in educational settings. Currently, she is employed by Forest Hills Special Education Cooperative, serving students in rural Monroe and Owen Counties in south central Indiana. Enjoy! :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: For the past 15 years, I have been working as an SLP serving public school students who have moderate to severe disabilities or complex communication needs.  Several students benefit from various forms of augmentative communication, and in my years of work I have come to appreciate the flexibility that a robust, core word based system provides.  However, when... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: Breaking Down Barriers to Inclusive Education for AAC Learners

June 14, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Breaking Down Barriers to Inclusive Education for AAC Learners

How can we help our AAC learners become cognitively engaged and participate fully in instructional activities? What can we do to support social connectedness and help them make contributions to classroom learning experiences? In this week’s featured video, which is embedded in a fuller AT Internet Module, Erin Sheldon helps us answer those kinds of questions and shares a framework to help us plan for full participation in learning experiences. We’re grateful to Erin, OCALI, and AT Internet Modules for creating and sharing these wonderful resources.  

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AAC In the Classroom: Considerations for Modeling Core Vocabulary

June 12, 2017 by - 3 Comments

AAC In the Classroom: Considerations for Modeling Core Vocabulary

Here in the US, many schools just let out for summer vacation but some special education teachers and SLPs are already thinking about things they want to prepare over the school break so they’ll be ready for fall. Some are contemplating changes to the ways they support AAC in the classroom. We’ve heard from several who are planning to prioritize modeling of core vocabulary using aided language input. Before we start making large core boards and other support materials, though, it’s helpful to stop and think through some important issues. A little planning now will save time and effort in the long run. If you’re planning to do this kind of prep work over the summer, here are some questions for your team to consider. Does each student with complex communication needs have access to an AAC system that includes core vocabulary? If not, why not? In some cases, the students... [Read More...]

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AAC in the High School Classroom: Where Core Vocabulary Meets Life Skills

June 1, 2017 by - 18 Comments

AAC in the High School Classroom: Where Core Vocabulary Meets Life Skills

Today, guest blogger Sarah Mueller, a special education teacher in Rochester Michigan,  shares her thoughts on supporting core vocabulary learning while working on functional life skills. Sarah, teaches high school students with intellectual and developmental disabilities and strives to embed language and communication throughout her students’ entire school experience. Sarah helps her students become strong self-advocates as they prepare for adult life. Marlene Cummings, Sarah’s colleague and mentor, introduces the post. ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::           I (Marlene Cummings) had the pleasure of meeting Sarah 2 years ago as a new teacher in one of my districts. She immediately engaged in our county level professional learning opportunities in AAC and Literacy. The AAC focus presented strategies to support AAC and language learning including: core vocabulary, aided language input, vocabulary instruction and opportunities. The literacy focus was designed to create and implement a comprehensive literacy program taught by Drs. Karen Erickson and David Koppenhaver. The outcome:... [Read More...]

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PrAACtical Teaching in the Autism Classroom: Instructional Activities for Core Vocabulary

March 2, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week #9: February 2017

“But I don’t have just one student who needs AAC in my class – I have a bunch! How can I work AAC teaching into an already hectic day?” Teachers Amy Devin and Lauren Pawlowski are back with real-world suggestions for situations like these. Last year, they introduced us to Big Core, gave us tips for implementing it in the classroom, and explained how they integrate it into shared reading lessons and predictable chart writing activities. Today, they’re back with prAACtical information on how they provide explicit instruction on core vocabulary words. Amy and Lauren are public school teachers in Michigan who began teaching in resource rooms and moved to self‐contained ASD elementary classrooms in 2009. There was not much talk about core language when they started teaching and even less about incorporating into classroom lessons. AAC devices have changed a bit over the years, too. Initially, they worked with a 32-location core board on... [Read More...]

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