Universal Design for Learning (UDL) solution plan is a tool used by educators to reduce learning barriers. Today’s educators are supposed to provide their students with high standards of learning despite the fact that some of their students have learning difficulties such as Dyslexia, language barriers, emotional problems and physical disabilities. Through UDL, learner’s disparities can be addressed and their needs met. UDL takes advantage of digital learning resources, hence making the learning process more effective and efficient.
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For my class I have to use several teaching methods to ensure that my students meet their individual needs. A universal curriculum has been designed to achieve the leaning objectives through the appropriate ways of presentation, means of expression and methods of engagement.
Therefore, all my teaching plans should be guided by these principles. Based on my experience with Nell, I am expected to use assistive technologies to help improve mobility, self-esteem, personal care and reading skills. To improve his mobility, a walker and braces are essential and mandatory.
A walker will help him in exploring his environment by indicating the location of different rocks, how to extract them and their economical importance in the society (Kleinert, 2001). Through active participation, his mobility as well as his environmental awareness will considerably improve.
Furthermore, it will not be easy for him to study either, so I have to offer him a wide variety of studying materials, such as textbooks and online resources that are beneficial to him. The study materials should precise and easy to use in obtaining information in order motivate readership.
Moreover, he might find it hard reading printed textbooks due to his low comprehension skills. Visual aids will be necessary to highlight key information like headings. In addition, the use of power point will serve the same purpose. An oral translator will be of significant assistance this would mean that difficulty in decoding text would be minimized. Words that appear too technical for him would be replaced by an oral translator with simple and understandable words.
Nell has a low self-esteem, which affects him negatively. To enhance his oral reading I should provide him with the appropriate support. Providing him with the project a week before the class lesson will help him in familiarizing himself with the content and hence he will be more comfortable with his classmates.
Picture charts and cards would be essential as this will not only make the lesson pleasant, but also provide images of rocks as seen in the real world. For Nell to improve his social skills, student’s participation will be vital, as this will ensure that students appreciate his participation.
Nell’s inability to communicate in English presents difficulty in learning. Establishing a continuous feedback mechanism will be appropriate as this will ensure clarity and additional support. The provision of several resources will lead to access and evaluation of multiple examples. Samples of rocks will be of great importance as this will be used as practical examples during class work and students will be able to counter check their theoretical characteristics and the physical ones(Scherer 2004).
In conclusion students with spina bifida rely heavily on assistive technology. This necessitates more research to be done to identify their response on several UDL methods and impacts of these methods on their daily life. I think that with more research and support students with disabilities will be able to live independently and participate fully in the community. To teachers like me, assessments would be made more effective and efficient only by continuous research.
Kleinert, H. L., & Kearns, J. F. (2001). Alternate assessment: measuring outcomes and supports for students with disabilities. Baltimore, Md.: P.H. Brookes Pub. Co..
Scherer, M. J. (2004). Connecting to learn: educational and assistive technology for people with disabilities. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.