Sunday, July 28, 2013

More reflections on Summer Institute

This past week opened my eyes to a world of new possibilities.

The first is figuring out a way to help my district start attracting student interns. The second day of the internship course focused on items that can strengthen districts'/supervisors' relationships with different universities as well as with the students. The thing I really carried away from it was the need to develop our own internship manual. Universities provide them but schools often operate on a somewhat different system. Manuals set up clear expectations for students and their supervisors. I like the idea of taking the guess work out of the equation. The difficulty is just figuring out how to modify the information that universities give out to fit the school's standards. My belief is that this will be a rather time consuming task with an estimate of several months worth of contemplation. 

The second training I attended was Language-Literacy Evaluation and Treatment in a Digital Age. The speaker, Sandie Barrie Blackley, was by far one of the best presenters I have heard so far in my limited professional development career. I was completely blown away by the information we learned about dyslexia. It makes me want to change the way I conduct assessments so that I include more phonological awareness tasks. I guess it will be a challenge for myself in the upcoming school year. Mrs. Blackley emphasized using a systematic multi-sensory approach for intervention (think Orton-Gillingham or Lindamood Bell LiPS). She also has a computer-based program that families can use to practice at home to compliment face-to-face therapy program. It's called Lexercise. The clinician sets up the games based on what the student is learning in therapy to reduce frustration levels. I like that the program is very personalized, but I'm not sure that very many of my students would be able to access a computer-based program.

Overall, I think it was another very good experience. 

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