I have been blessed this summer to be involved in many NFB (National Federation of the Blind) events; including attending my first national convention and leading a BELL (Braille Enrichment, Literacy, and Learning) program. A theme that continues to pervade conversations, trainings, and the professional community is to let students make mistakes.The adaptation from Classroom Collaborations by Laurel J. Hudson, Ph.D. (Perkins School for the Blind) recognizes mistakes on her 19 Ways of Stepping Back.
“Let students make mistakes and get into trouble. It’s part of the human experience!”
So often, we adults, impair students’ abilities to make mistakes because we are too quick with corrections, eventually causing students to fear making mistakes, and further impeding the problem solving process. We need to stop putting students at a disadvantage by offering assistance too quickly. Encourage kids to do their best work, but allow room for mistakes so learning can happen naturally.
“Mistakes are the portal of discovery.” –James Joyce
The flowers are in full bloom, the grills have been fired up, and we have several blissful summer months head! The summer is an excellent time to get out into the community and explore what your neighborhood has to offer. There are also a wide variety of summer programs going on. Here are some programs to check out:
NFB Braille Enrichment Learning and Literacy Program (BELL):
Colorado Springs July 14th-25th and Westminster July 21st-August 1st.
Colorado Center for the Blind (Littleton) June 9th-June 27th
I had the chance to head to Aurora School District to carve pumpkins with some very creative students and brilliant TVI’s, which got me thinking about using senses to take in information. The weight of the pumpkins, the smell, the gooey insides, the shape and all the parts that make up a pumpkin stimulate the senses (down to eventually eating the seeds). As the days start to become cooler and shorter, what are some places we can integrate more experiences to stimulate the senses? Where can we turn our every day lives into teachable moments? Fall in Colorado is beautiful, take time with your child to make it a fun, sensory experience to fully embrace Fall.
The weather is cooling, the Broncos are winning, and the school routine is in full swing! As the leaves start to fall and our kids start to learn and engage with school, we have to look and see where else they are growing. Have they taken taken their first steps? Have they taken on a new responsibility or chore in the home? Are they picking out their own clothing for school? What has changed for you and your child this year that you can see the independence start to take affect? It could be maturity. It could be motivation. Or, it could be all those frustrating countless hours you spent working towards that goal! Whatever it is and whatever you did to get there is TOTALLY WORTH IT! As a matter of fact, in hindsight, you might even look back fondly at the process and think, “there were frustrating moments, but it wasn’t that bad.” We realize when we are intention in our teaching, we make baby steps that eventually helps our children to achieve great things. I encourage to you reflect on a success family recently experienced; what did it take to get there, and how did you feel once you did? Then, I challenge you to do some big picture thinking. What would be a good next step for our family? What is the next great thing we want to tackle? Is it that we want our child to feel more confident? Do we want them to independently get ready for school, only asking for help when they need it? Do we want to work on turn taking and awareness of others, so family game night is more enjoyable? Once you have decided what it is that important to your family, write it down. In this way, we can begin to brainstorm what our journey to achieving might entail.
“Until a goal is committed to paper it is not a goal, it is simply a wish.”
Welcome to Learning Channels! Thanks for visiting. The website is a work in progress, but soon, it will be useful tool and a source of information. We are excited to meet you and join the visual impaired and blind community. Working together to make your child and family successful in everyday life. Feel free to look around at what we have and please contact us with any questions about who we are or what we do.