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Assistive Technology Support Initiative Volunteer Training Workshop Toolkit Part 1 This training tool kit is for use in any school board, learning disability.

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Presentation on theme: "Assistive Technology Support Initiative Volunteer Training Workshop Toolkit Part 1 This training tool kit is for use in any school board, learning disability."— Presentation transcript:

1 Assistive Technology Support Initiative Volunteer Training Workshop Toolkit Part 1 This training tool kit is for use in any school board, learning disability association or other non-profit organization to train volunteers to support students who use assistive technology. Dec.1.11

2 Background, Tips and Information The following slides provide the background on ATSI. Tips on volunteering. Additional AT training can be found in the ATSI Volunteer AT Training Part 2 PowerPoint.

3 Northern Micro donated laptops and scanners Micro Computer Software donated software ATSI is made possible with donations from

4 Welcome and Thank you Welcome Introductions Thank you for volunteering Housekeeping


6 Myth or Fact? Can learning disabilities be cured? True or False

7 False There is no "cure" for learning disabilities. They are life-long. However, children with learning disabilities can be high achievers and can be taught ways to get around the learning disability. With the right help, children with learning disabilities can and do learn successfully.

8 Myth or Fact? Are learning disabilities inherited? True or False

9 True Learning disabilities tend to run in families, so some learning disabilities may be inherited. Learning disabilities are more common in boys than girls, possibly because boys tend to mature more slowly.

10 Myth or Fact? Is Assistive Technology a “cop-out”? True or False

11 False Just as an individual in a wheelchair needs a ramp to go around stairs, an individual with learning disabilities needs tools to help work around obstacle in the areas of reading, writing, spelling, numbers, memory and/or organization.

12 About ATSI Ottawa Volunteers in Education is an Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, community volunteer program that began in 1993. Volunteers are recruited from the community, screened, and trained to support teachers and students in K-12 schools. We share the mutual goal of helping educators ensure academic success for students. Educators need Assistive Technology trained volunteers.

13 Goal of ATSI ATSI aim - enhance support to students new to AT so they can reap the benefits of these tools as quickly as possible.

14 Community Partners in Ottawa Students – elementary, high school and post secondary Parents/guardians Algonquin College Centre for Students with Disabilities Carleton University Paul Menton Centre for Students with Disabilities University of Ottawa Learning Technology Mentoring Centre La Cité collégiale

15 Community Collaboration Conseil des écoles catholiques du Centre-Est Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario Ottawa-Carleton District School Board Ottawa Catholic School Board Learning Disabilities Associations Ottawa Network for Education

16 How you can help Volunteer to help students who use AT Share your own LD experiences Mentor a student Make a difference Connect to the community Start an AT volunteer program at your school

17 Assistive Technology in Education Computer-based (AT) is being used successfully within the education system to support the learning process. The goal for AT use is to allow learners to use their strengths and participate as fully as possible in school.

18 AT Software For Learning Text to speech – Kurzweil 3000, TextHELP, Natural Reader, PremierKurzweil 3000TextHELP Natural ReaderPremier Speech to text - Dragon NaturallySpeakingDragon NaturallySpeaking Reading and writing – Read&Write GOLD, Word QRead&Write GOLD Word Q Organization, writing, mind map – Inspiration, SMART IdeasInspiration SMART Ideas

19 AT Devices iPod Touch Talking calculator Franklin Spell Checker Electronic Dictionary Digital Voice Recorders LiveScribe Echo Smart Pen

20 Purpose of AT Effective tools Not to replace other students services or academic accommodations Augment current support Extend both academic independence and academic options Follow student from post secondary to the workplace

21 Challenges Right fit Significant learning curve Technical difficulties Need for support

22 Benefits for Students Independence Levels playing field Access to curriculum Academic Success

23 Responsibility to Accommodate Required by law Accommodate LD students Equal access to AT Inclusion in mainstream classrooms Access to curriculum

24 ESL FSL Support AT is a powerful tool to teach second languages Can be used in all classrooms Accelerates language learning

25 AT Training in Schools Students are identified for AT through the IPRC process Ministry of Education SEA grants provide equipment and limited training Students need long term training and support Volunteers needed to support AT students

26 Types of Learning Disabilities Visit to learn more about learning disabilities How AT is a learning strategy for some students AT with proper learning strategies work with strengths, weaknesses, challenges

27 Step One—AT Preparation Watch the Don Johnson video “The Case Against Assistive Technology”

28 “Must See” Film Watch this video "HOW DIFFICULT CAN THIS BE?" The F.A.T. City Learning Disability Workshop by Richard Lavoie F.A.T. City stands for the Frustration, Anxiety and Tension which comes from living with a learning disability. View video online at the following website: Cut and paste the URL into your browser if you have difficulty.

29 AT Training First Steps Watch ATSI Videos and testimonials http://www.onfe- =videos http://www.onfe- =videos Watch the post secondary videos http://www.onfe- http://www.onfe-

30 Additional resources for teachers and Faculty of Ed Students Work through the Teacher Training Modules on this site http://www.onfe- =videoshttp://www.onfe- =videos

31 Discussion and Reflect Walk through ATSI website resources Discuss and answer questions after each video Be sure to work through the 2 nd Power Point for AT software training.

32 Who are the students? Average or above average intelligence Unable to show what they know May have additional stress of being responsible for learning and using AT independently Received some AT training from school board May not have access to AT at school or at home

33 Importance of building relationship first Importance of positive reinforcement—these students know what they are not good at—your role is to focus on their strengths Coaching—not training or teaching You are not their teacher, nor their parent—you are their coach, mentor, tutor—positive energy. Let them lead—you guide them Role of the Volunteer

34 Tips to Remember If you are going to miss a session, be sure to tell the student (write it down for them as well as inform the teacher in advance.) Ask for the teacher’s email address so they can inform you in advance of any class trips, etc. and vice versa. You are not allowed to contact the student independently by email, phone etc. All communication to the student must be through the teacher.

35 Protect Yourself Ask for and review school board volunteer policy and procedures You are never to be alone with student (school policy) All volunteer positions in schools require a current Police Records Check to volunteer with the vulnerable sector

36 Step One: Build the Relationship Find common ground—use your own childhood and share stories: “I struggled with learning to read when I was a child.”, share your challenges, your learning style, how you learn differently.

37 Everyone is Good at Something Find out what the student likes to do or what they are good at. LD students have amazing strengths (public speaking, being super organized, creative, gifted athlete, etc.) Celebrate their strengths at every opportunity.

38 Importance of Commitment Students and teachers quickly rely on you to show up at the agreed upon time and look forward to your visit with anticipation. Students will take it personally if you don’t show up and will think that they are not important enough to you.

39 Students Take it Personally Children usually internalize a volunteer “no show” experience with negative self- talk “Joe thinks I’m stupid so I guess he doesn’t want to help me anymore”. To many students you are the highlight of their week.

40 Honour the Relationship If you are no longer able to volunteer it is very important to have closure with the student and teacher to say goodbye and to honour the relationship. Schools will often hold a “Thank You to Volunteers Day”—attend!

41 Be Positive Build trust Build confidence Above all be positive—comment on success no matter how small. “I think you are amazing at” …being organized, using the keyboard, seeing the small details, etc.

42 Normalize the Experience Remember some students may not have support at home or do not understand their learning challenges; they may think there is something wrong with them. Reinforce that AT is on their team. It’s a learning strategy that will let them show what they know.

43 Remember—Be Positive Some students never hear positive feedback. It’s human nature to remember the negative things you hear about yourself. Be positive. You are on their team as their coach!

44 Step Two: Determining Student’s Needs for Support Ask the teacher for some background on where the student needs support. The teacher may not know if they have not had the student in their class for very long. Ask to speak to the resource teacher if possible. Don’t assume the teacher knows the AT learning strategies that work for your student.

45 You Can Figure it Out! If you do not receive any input or direction from the teacher or resource teacher this is OK—you can figure it out after you meet the student.

46 Step Three: How to Begin your AT Support Session Start with showing the student the AT videos and website. Let the student show you what software they have on their computer. Ask the student to show what they know how to use. Ask the student where they need help.

47 Coaching versus Training Guide and encourage the student to use AT to do their schoolwork. For example they have a writing assignment: use Mind mapping to create a writing outline, use DNS to create the first draft in MS Word, use MS Word editing software as needed to make the final version.

48 Student Actively Engaged Remember to keep your student actively engaged. Always let your student be in control of the computer and mouse. Sit on the side and point and guide—do not take over the mouse and computer. Your student may have learned to be helpless and to rely on others to do their work—it is your role to encourage their independence and build their confidence in using AT.

49 Step Four: Encourage Teacher Participation Key to student success is your relationship with the teacher. Encourage the teacher or resource staff to participate in AT support sessions (with permission from the student).

50 Let Them Teach You Ask the student to offer “show what you know” sessions with the teacher and resource staff to give them a chance to “teach the teacher” and let them shine. Remember you only retain 10% of what you learn but if you can teach it to someone you will retain 90%.

51 Be Prepared Provide Feedback Ask the teacher for materials in advance to prepare for the student. Ask to prepare tests for test taking. Provide feedback to the teacher on how well your student is doing using AT.

52 How You Can Help the Teacher Scan and prepare documents in advance in Kurzweil 3000 or other AT programs. Edit underlying text in scanned documents. Prepare tests for test taking in Kurzweil 3000. Scan materials not already available on Ministry website in alternative format.

53 Find Sources of Alternative Format Find books on CD, MP3 format, ebooks, W. Ross MacDonald library, etc. for the student and teacher. Ask for all teacher handouts in MS Word format or in electronic format to save time having to scan and format documents.

54 Additional Training Ask to be included in any school board AT training sessions. Offer to set up an AT training session for parents and staff.

55 Access to AT Ask for access to a computer with AT to practice and prepare documents for the student and teacher. AT is very expensive and in most schools limited to the students that have IEPs— don’t expect to be given the software just because you are volunteering.

56 Practice Your Skills Finding access to use AT in the school may be challenging but try to advocate having access to a computer to prepare documents and practice your skills. Public Libraries have AT computers—book time to practice. Stay current on new programs. Visit the ATSI website Help and Resources.

57 ATSI AT Training Be sure to work through the ASTI Volunteer AT Training Part 2 PowerPoint for free online AT training ideas. Download the presentation and customize your own volunteer training program. Stay current—visit often www.onfe- Join online AT communities in Linked In

58 Spread the Word!! Direct teachers, parents, and students to Add your resources to the ATSI site Help by filling in the online survey!

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