Where to start when teaching kids to type

Teaching kids to type

Educational technology can help children strengthen literacy skills, deal more easily with the challenges of learning difficulties, and enhance their performance across the elementary and high school curriculum.

And while apps typically make headlines for their big-data algorithms and adaptive lesson plans, one of the best Ed Tech ideas for children may be a more back-to-basics approach. For example, programs that teach keyboarding skills. That's because in order to use a computer, play educational games, and even search the web, it helps to have learned touch typing.

Being able to type without looking at the keyboard means kids can focus on the task in front of them, instead of getting distracted hunting for letters.

Strategies for students with ADHD

Strategies for students with ADHD

ADHD - Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and ADD - Attention Deficit Disorder but without the hyperactivity, are specific learning difficulties (SpLds) typified by short attention span, lack of concentration and in the case of ADHD, poor control of impulses.

A hyperactive student might be impulsive, disruptive, restless, or uncooperative. He or she may be a child who doesn’t sit still and struggles to listen. Because of the impulsivity and activity level, students with ADHD can try to solve problems physically and their extreme behavior may lead to problems in the classroom.

However, teaching coping strategies to children with ADHD can make learning less problematic and help them focus their attention on the lesson at hand.

16 Teaching strategies for EALs

16 Teaching strategies to help EALs in the classroom

It can be difficult to know the best way to help English as an additional language (EAL) learners in the classroom. That’s because they are a diverse group and designated language tutors can’t always be in a lesson to help out.

EALs will inevitably experience comprehension and communication difficulties that can get in the way of learning. But that doesn't mean they always need over-simplified vocabulary worksheets.

Teachers of EALs who approach the challenge in different ways, by making classroom activities more EAL friendly, teaching strategies English learners can implement independently, making use of technology, and paring native-speaker and English language learners up to encourage scaffolding, can turn any lesson into a successful learning experience for everyone involved, even the teacher!

What is attention deficit disorder?

What is attention deficit disorder?

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are usually considered together and fall into a category of learning disorders whereby people who experience them have particular, rather than global, problems with their learning in education and other areas, hence the term Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLd). However, there is some ambiguity about how the term Attention Deficit Disorder is applied in the health and education sectors.

Handwriting difficulties

Handwriting difficulties

When we write, we want the language we produce to be recognizable to others. Our handwriting should be legible so that it doesn't hinder the reader’s comprehension and our text must conform to established norms when it comes to punctuation, formatting and spelling.

But putting words down on paper is not as straightforward as it may seem. In fact, there’s a complex process of orthographic encoding that we rely on to help us form the letters in words and use them correctly.

If the mechanics involved in writing cause cognitive or physical strain, as is the case with most common handwriting problems, this can impact on our thought process and reduce the complexity of our writing. It also results in feelings of frustration and low self-esteem.

For a child with dysgraphia, a condition that results in poor handwriting, producing written language is a struggle that can drastically affect performance at school and get in the way of a child expressing him or herself in writing.

How to help a child with dyspraxia in the classroom

How to help a child with dyspraxia

Teaching a child with dyspraxia can be a frustrating experience due to the wide range of symptoms that may be present. However, while dyspraxia is a neurological condition that causes movement and coordination issues, it has no impact on intelligence.

Children with dyspraxia are perfectly capable of learning alongside their peers; they may just need some extra attention and support from time to time. Awareness is the first step and can make all of the difference in helping a child to reach his or her full potential at school.

5 Tips for teaching sight words

5 Tips for teaching sight words

Sight words are a set of high frequency English words. When a student learns to recognize them automatically, it can increase his or her reading fluency and comprehension.

They are useful for young children, struggling readers, and English as an additional language learners to study, especially those who are just getting started with reading.

That's because they are the most commonly found terms in English texts. Mastering them frees up attention for processing harder and less frequently encountered words.

How to build self-confidence in students

How to build self-confidence in students

It’s tragically common to find that students who have specific learning difficulties, motor skills difficulties, and physical impairments experience a lack of confidence in the classroom. This is particularly the case when learning differences go unrecognized.

The resulting situation is quite serious for children and young-adults. It colors their lives and can have significant implications for success at school, both in the present, and in the future.

Fortunately, parents and teachers can make a difference by fostering a positive self-image, encouraging independence, and helping students who are struggling get the right support and classroom accommodations.

Teaching students with dyslexia

Teaching students with dyslexia

Specific Learning Difficulties affect a significant percentage of the population – and dyslexia alone can affect up to 10% of us – 4% severely so. Teachers who aren’t trained to recognise the signs of specific learning difficulties can unintentionally hammer away at a student’s self-esteem.

If he’s good with words and he’s not performing academically, and if he can’t spell today what he spelled correctly yesterday, he must be being uncooperative, mustn’t he? The educational struggles of children with a learning difference can be compounded if their teachers have not had training in how to respond.

difference between dyslexia and dyspraxia

What’s the difference between dyslexia and dyspraxia?

Both dyslexia and dyspraxia are learning difficulties that can cause children and adults to struggle at school—so what’s the difference between them? In general, a key indicator of dyslexia is to do with literacy skills such as reading, writing and spelling. On the other hand, dyspraxia veers more toward movement and planning difficulties.

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