This week it came to my attention that using technology can actually become a hindrance to those that have issues reading. When I was younger I also suffered from a mild form of dyslexia and through working with a counselor I was able to overcome it and succeed at school. I even went to Marlboro with a bunch of teachers that worked for Landmark College that specializes in assisting students that need extra resources to enable them to succeed at school. My point is that I should have been reviewing what I’m doing with my course and ensuring that it is accessible to all types of learners. I think I got caught up in this being my first course and making sure it appealed to the majority, that I lost sight of those students that needed the extra time.
I got a call today from the coordinator and we discussed ways to help the students that need help to succeed and I felt like they didn’t propose enough and made a comment about how they tried to not impose on the instructor more then absolutely necessary to help the student. I don’t know why this bothered me so much, but it did. I spent 5 min afterwards researching ways in which I could help the students better and already had 3 solutions that wouldn’t take me more then a few minutes to implement and I could see would help the student out a lot. I plan on meeting with the student and seeing what I can do to help beyond what the school has done already. I know that my course is very text heavy and that can be a burden for those having to acclimate to a structure that is proving detrimental to their needs for success.
For myself, not having music while I’m studying tends to make things harder. I don’t know if its because I am easily distracted, or something else is going on, but having music playing makes me more effective at any task I set myself to. I’d like to believe that I’m a shining example of the Mozart Effect, but I don’t think the music I listen to actually calms my mind, but instead stimulates it. I prefer upbeat music that keeps my foot tapping and I find that I move to the music both in my seat and with my typing matches the beat. I learned this years ago when coding programs that if I could crank up the volume and increase the tempo, the rest of the world fades away and I only see the lines of code. Although I do have a good and yet bad quark when it comes to music, Lyrics. I hear the words, but I never listen to them, they are just another instrument making sounds. I can sing along with the words, but I have no idea what the singer is saying or the meaning behind the song as I’m just listening to the full ensemble.
My mother confirmed that when music in our house was played less, I tended to have a harder time dealing with issues and concentrating on tasks. Once she made an effort to re-add it to our home environment my attitude and grades drastically increased. I listen to music on average about 16 hours a day and it really helps me. I am thankful everyday for technology as it allows me to enjoy one of my favorite vices that leads me to be a productive and successful learner/instructor. Now if there was a way to integrate music into teaching A+ courses…. hmmm……