In 2008 , when this learning journey began was teaching a mixed ability group of special needs Junior school students who were very motivated to learn when information was presented using technology, especially computer based learning tasks. Our aging equipment provided me with loads of challenges and lessons in patience!
When I told people that I was planning to create a blog most people suggested that nobody would want to read a blog about day to day activities in a special school.
They were wrong!
The blog has helped me to achieve outcomes that I would have only dreamed about a year ago:
- Quick access to quality programs that I want to use with the children .
- It keeps a record of the activities we have completed in the classroom
- It keeps parents and other interested parties informed of what is happening in our room.
- Educates others about what a special needs classroom in the 21st century is like.
- Allows the children to access programs with minimal effort at school and at home.
- It helps us to connect and collaborate with other mainstream and special education classrooms internationally.
- Helps me to learn valuable ICT skills because I am motivated to produce a quality product for the children , their families and blogging buddies to engage with.
- It allows me to to respond to Giorchelli Report's call for special education teachers to share their knowledge and skills with their mainstream counterparts so that children with special needs could be more easily and successfully integrated into the mainstream system. Hence the Teacher Space Blog was created.
- In 2009 I took up a role as a key local professional with the Australian Autism Education and Training Consortium supporting teachers in the Hume Region who are new to teaching students on the Autism Spectrum. The blog is like a portable resource library that travels with me from school to school and I can leave my resources with them after I have gone.
- My blog is used as an educational learning resource for people from over 30 countries from all sorts of different backgrounds.
- As a direct result of engaging with teachers via the blog , I even get requests from non departmental schools to come and help them set up learning environments for their special needs students.
- The best indicator of how my journey has come full circle is that other teachers ask me to show them how to blog!
- E5 - No problem !