How do you know what’s going on in their heads if they don’t say anything? If you have students who are too quiet, chances are there is something they are not telling you, which you’ll need to find out – fast!
Prof. Hacker shares a unique perspective on how Angry Birds can teach us about Universal Design for Instruction and Universal Design for Learning.
"I think that Angry Birds is so fun to play because it helps develop our meta-cognitive skills. Throughout playing Angry Birds, one must pay attention to the strategies being employed, adjust one’s play as needed to achieve certain goals and objectives, and transfer what you have learned about a bird’s capabilities several levels ago to the current level.
In short, Angry Birds is a powerful metaphor for learning. As I was recently playing the game, I could not help but think: what if my classroom was more like this? Would students have a better learning experience?"
Consider the following:
> Angry Birds involves practice without penalty.
> Angry Birds offers the opportunity for constant feedback.
> Angry Birds inherently teachers that different tools have different purposes.
> Angry Birds rewards perseverance.
> Angry Birds gives no time limit.
"No wonder we are all addicted to this game! Now if only we could ensure that our classrooms are always safe spaces to practice new strategies, offer students a range of possibilities for how to succeed in their learning, give our students constant feedback, and support knowledge transfer within and among our courses."
"PhET provides fun, interactive, research-based simulations of physical phenomena for free.
To help students visually comprehend concepts, PhET simulations animate what is invisible to the eye through the use of graphics and intuitive controls such as click-and-drag manipulation, sliders and radio buttons. In order to further encourage quantitative exploration, the simulations also offer measurement instruments including rulers, stop-watches, voltmeters and thermometers. As the user manipulates these interactive tools, responses are immediately animated thus effectively illustrating cause-and-effect relationships as well as multiple linked representations."
Why UDL? PhET simulations offers multiple means of representation and action and multiple means of engagement. There is also a translation tool to translate any of these simulations in a multitude of languages.
A new publication, Curricular Opportunities in the Digital Age, from the Students at the Center was recently released that focuses on creating an "ecology of learning" where new student-centered pathways can benefit ALL students with the use of digital technologies. UDL can be the framework fto make that happen.
"David H. Rose and Jenna W. Gravel consider how advances in teaching technologies enable new curricular designs that offer exciting ways to create classrooms that are student centered.
Given the myriad ways students differ, how can educators determine the essential components of curricula that use new technologies to support student-centered approaches to learning—for all students, not just a few? Universal design for learning is a promising framework for doing that. UDL provides a structure and guidelines for making decisions about instructional designs that meet the challenge of diversity. Many options are built into UDL, based on research and practice from multiple domains within the learning sciences—education, developmental psychology, cognitive science, and cognitive neuroscience."
Kentucky Virtual Library has creared a visual tool to help students do research. This is an excellent model of how to present a step by step approach in a visual way that includes a set of tasks that students can follow in conducting research. The basic steps are:
"I [Paul Hamilton] support some non-speaking children who are learning to use the iPad as a communication device. Sometimes, these learners are inclined to ignore their communication apps because they much prefer other apps. These preferred apps may be worthwhile, but they can get in the way of learning to use the device for its primary purpose. In iOS 6, Apple has introduced an accessibility feature that can help.
Guided Access makes it possible to keep the iPad in a single app, and to control which features of an app are available to a user. In the case above, the iPad might be configured as a dedicated communication device until the user has learned to use it for effective communication. This is only one of many potential situations where Guided Access might be helpful. Of course, Guided Access is also available on the iPhone or iPod Touch."
"In this Kappa Delta Pi Record article, Susan Trostle Brand (University of Rhode Island/Kingston), Antoinette Favazza (University of Rhode Island), and Elizabeth Dalton (TechACCESS) present ways that teachers can use Universal Design for Learning to make lessons accessible to students with a wide spectrum of learning styles and abilities:
> Multiple means of representation – Giving students options for perception, language and symbols, and comprehension"
> Multiple means for engagement – A constructivist approach can support active engagement through:
- Recruiting student interest
- Sustaining effort and persistence
> "Multiple means for action and expression – Varying physical action, expressive skills and fluency, and executive functions
> Multiple means of assessing understanding – This includes methods, formats, scope/range level, product and outcome, and feedback"
“Universal Design for Learning: A Blueprint for Success for All Learners” by Susan Trostle Brand, Antoinette Favazza, and Elizabeth Dalton in Kappa Delta Pi Record, July-September 2012 (Vol. 48, #3, p. 134-139), http://bit.ly/OeUOSF
"As a framework, UDL requires educators to think proactively about the variability of all learners. In consideration of the UDL Critical Elements, educators implementing UDL should use a backwards design instructional process that incorporates the following five steps."
> Step 1: Establish Clear Outcomes
> Step 2: Anticipate Learner Variability
> Step 3: Measurable Outcomes and Assessment Plan
> Step 4: Instructional Experience
> Step 5: Reflection and New Understanding
The Universal Design for Learning Implementation and Research Network (UDL-IRN) is a grassroots organization that supports the scaled implementation and research related to Universal Design for Learning. You can download the PDF of this UDL Instructional Process on this site.
How do you personalize learning? First you need to know what personalized learning is. Here is a new site that provides resources, research, models, examples, and stories. This page provides a toolkit that can help your organization begin personalizing learning to meet the needs of all learners.
Check out the chart that compares Personalization, Differentiation, and Indivdiualization. You can download the chart and a report that explains the details of the chart. The Three Stages of Personalized Learning Environments can help you determine where you are in personalizing learning.
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) provides the framework in personalizing learning for all learners. UDL also guides the design of the Personal Learner Profile[TM]. It provides the UDL lens to select the appropriate tools for the Personal Learning Backpack[TM]. UDL guides how Personalized Learning meets the Common Core.
Steven Christopher, ACC Director of Special Populations at Austin Community Colleges explains universal design and offers tips to faculty on how to incorporate Universal Design in their instruction.
> "Use delivery methods that recognize a range of abilities, backgrounds, and previous experiences. Don’t rely solely on lecture; incorporate, discussion, hands-on activities, case studies, and projects.
> Use a consistent, intuitive format for all print and electronic materials. Print materials should be available in electronic format; webpages should include text descriptions of graphics. Presentation materials should be legible with sufficient spacing. Videos should be closed-captioned.
> Promote different types of interaction with your students – not just face-to-face, in-class discussion, but also online interaction.
> Offer frequent and flexible options for students to demonstrate knowledge – not only tests, but also group work, portfolios, and presentations. Make sure feedback is uniform and frequent.
> Ensure that classroom, labs, and fieldwork are accessible for a range of physical abilities. Minimize the need for unnecessary physical travel by making materials available online or allowing work to be submitted electronically."
Learn where UDL is being successfully implemented in Postsecondary Education!
"Universal Design for Learning (UDL)is an important educational framework to consider for postsecondary education. Thoughtful planning through the lens of UDL can offer important options for learners as they navigate a range of college or career postsecondary opportunites.We know that students are incredibly diverse in their learning needs, preparation, and approaches. UDL offers a practical instructional method to anticipate this learner variability and provide every student with equal opportunities to learn.
UDL is also an effective means for shaping learning experiences outside the classroom, such as online instruction, hands-on learning, or work-study experiences."