Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Using technology to personalize learning - part 3: meeting the needs of all learners

I'm back in Mumbai again, and reading on in the book Personalized Learning: A Guide for Engaging Students with Technology by Peggy Grant and Dale Basye.  This section of the book, on personalizing learning for all learners, has sections on at-risk students, students with disabilities, gifted students, and English language learners.  However because this is a blog about technology, the part I was really interested in was where the authors divide tech tools into 5 educational areas:

Literacy resources
What this is:  blogs, ebooks and discussion forums
How these help personalize learning:  students can use their own preferred learning styles to engage in topics of interest, and can also access multiple texts on similar topics.  Text-to-speech tools can make these resources available to a wide range of students.

Web tools
What this is:  podcasts, wikis, media editors and aggregators
How these help personalize learning:  students can use these to demonstrate their learning in multiple ways, they can share their work with an authentic audience, increasing motivation.  Students can use these tools to show what they are learning.

Digital information resources
What this is:  encyclopedia sites, podcasts, expert websites and blogs
How these help personalize learning: Web research is the most common use of technology in today's classrooms and students are able to use these resources to interact with content and experts to explore subjects and topics

Social networking sites
What this is:  sites that allow students to network with others
How these help personalize learning: Students with special needs can build up a network of similar students and connect with educators and experts.  This can help students who feel isolated because of problems communicating, and can help them to build constructive relationships with others.

Learning management systems
What this is:  systems that help teachers organize instruction and communicate with students and parents
How these help personalize learning:  Providing a platform for accessing content and keeping records of students' progress.

It was interesting to see how these tools have been divided.  From a PYP perspective, two of these categories are helping students to investigate and inquire, one is helping students to organize,  one is helping students to communicate and collaborate and one is helping students to create.  In the next post I'll be thinking about different types of tech integration and how these can impact student achievement.

Photo Credit: flickingerbrad Flickr via Compfight cc

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