In a previous post, I mentioned the use of OneNote as a tool for helping students manage classwork. Since that time, I have been able to work with several teachers in implementing the use of OneNote with their students. One of these classes is a self-contained class for students with learning disabilities. This teacher is responsible for the case management and instruction of all self-contained students in grades 6-12 (yes, you read that correctly!). Needless to say, this presents a major challenge for her when it comes to providing quality instruction for all of her students. We met to discuss ways that she could leverage the technology she has in her room to assist her with managing all that she is responsible for on a daily basis, and she selected OneNote as one of the options. Her use of this tool far exceeded my expectations. Below is her first-hand account of that experience, as well as a few words from one of her students. Happy Teaching!
“In teaching students with various needs, disabilities, and accommodations, I strive to find a way to keep their interest in class. Each year, administration pushes the use of technology in classes, but I am not the typical technology person.
I have always utilized classroom notebooks, but it has gotten increasingly difficult to keep up with the lessons, assignments, and other materials for the multiple grade levels and subject areas I teach. I have students that find organization to be a difficult task; students that think “writing” is hard because of physical/occupational therapy deficits…there was just one problem after the next.
When introduced to OneNote, I thought it would be great to have my students complete some activities on it. They enjoyed being on the computer. They were excited to type and even draw things instead of writing. Soon, this once in a while thing turned into using it daily, for every subject. I am able to add information (notes, grades, comments) in real time, while students are actively working on the page! Their work is in one place. Instructions are easy to get to. I am even able to embed links directly on their pages to cut down on extra internet surfing. When I want to add a new subject area, it’s as simple as clicking “new”.
My students are able to access it easily and they enjoy the feel of working independently while still having one on one assistance. I see what they are doing from my desk, sitting next to them, or even in another classroom in the building. OneNote is an awesome and easy way to use technology in the classroom!” – Learning Support Teacher and Case Manager
“I like this because you can go back and see what you did. U can look (at what) the teacher put on there.” – Student