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EC&I 833: July 26- Final Blog Post

Option 1: What are your experiences with assistive technology, and what are some of the challenges and limitations? What conclusions can you draw around the philosophical and theoretical understandings that underpin the technologies that you have used?

After recently completing my third year of teaching, my knowledge of assistive technology is continuously growing and evolving.  Three years is a limited time, but every year I have had a student with exceptionalities who require assistive technology.  Last year, I had a student who had visual impairments who required personalized technology.  Throughout my educational training, I had never learned about assistive technology to assist the visually impaired.  However, I always knew at some point throughout my career, I would have a student who would have an exceptionality who required assistance I was not familiar with.  I had to call and email her prior teachers and utilize Google for ways to assist this student.  Was it difficult? Absolutely, but it is rewarding when you can learn something new to assist your students. 

As I discussed in our presentation today, there are many limitations when it comes to assistive technology.  Some technology is expensive, but others are inexpensive (pencil grips, low-tech calculators, guiding reading strips).  From my experience, there are so many new, innovative, and creative ways to incorporate wearable technology, as well as various forms of assistive technology.  My issue has always been trying to figure out what I can use, how to use it, and how it can benefit my teaching and help facilitate learning.  I do not think I will ever be an expert when it comes to assistive technology.  There is always something new, and ground-breaking on a regular basis.  I wish I was able stay up to date and know how to utilize specific up to date technology on a regular basis, but it is not a reality.  Every year is a new year, with different challenges.  It is our job to assist those who are in need of assistive technology based on their needs once they are in your class.  Year after year, I feel as though I learn something new to assist those who require assistive technology for their education.  It is one of the many reasons as to why I love this profession. 


8 thoughts on “EC&I 833: July 26- Final Blog Post

  1. Reid, the reflection and awareness you exhibit in your first three years of leading a classroom is amazing! The way you are able to handle what comes your way, challenge yourself to support students and be open to the fact that will continue throughout your career sets a tremendous foundation to teaching and learning! It was a pleasure reading your blogs, listening to your presentation and learning from you this semester! I look forward to our paths crossing again, and if not, I’ll have my dad say hi on my behalf when he does another Outdoor Ed with your crew!


  2. Great post Reid, you’ve got a lot of insight here into what makes you tick and how to best help your students as they navigate through their educational journey. I’m glad I was able to share a course with you and work our way through 833, culminating with such a great presentation on a worthwhile topic.


  3. I appreciate you honestly and how you talked about not knowing how to teach a student with visual impairments, but were not naive to think that you would never be faced with something like this in your career. Your ability to work through learning the assistive technology to implementing it was refreshing to know that you put the work in to help make all of your kiddos successful in the classroom. Although you’re only in your third year of teaching, it sounds like you have the drive to learn new things and to continue evolving your teaching practices. Keep up the great work!


  4. Thank-you for your wonderful and informative presentation on assistive technology. The term “wearable technology” is new to me however it is not a new concept. When I think about what I need to be successful as a student and teacher I require glasses to be able to read and write. Since I was five years old I have been wearing glasses and I would be lost without them. I hope that all assistive technology whether in the classroom or in everyday life can be as normalized as wearing glasses is now. I too have only been teaching for three years and it truly is a revolving cycle of new technology that we can access for kids to be more successful. Students, teachers and parents should not have to jump through as many hoops as they currently have to for the learning environment to be equitable for them.


  5. Very honest and you ended this post on a very positive note. We had a student this year who came back after recovering from COVID-19 and what completely deaf. Could 100% not hear anything. This presented a new challenge for the teacher, and she rose to the occasion, as good teachers always do. The amount of tech assists needed this year between hybrid learning, remote learning, and isolation time was incredible. Thank you for sharing during your presentation about wearable technology. Though there are some potential privacy issues, I think that some of it will have interesting implications for education, and I am hoping to explore some virtual reality next school year with my students.


  6. I appreciated you sharing your experiences. I can relate to your post, I too am new to teaching with only two years under my belt. It feels overwhelming sometimes when I think about everything I do not know. I agree that the unknowns that come up each year keeps us on our toes and we can never complain about being bored. I learn something new every day I go to work.
    Thanks for a great presentation and I hope you enjoy the rest of the summer.


  7. It is a great post. I really appreciate how you shared your experience honestly. I can relate to your experience. I only had one student in my 5 years career who needed assistive technology. However, we had some limitations in the school and couldn’t actually provide the best technology for him, unfortunately. As I couldn’t deal directly with this technology so I had limited knowledge in this aspect before doing EC & I 833.


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