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April 15, 2016

Want an abundance of apps including assistive technology to enrich learning skills for children from birth to age 8? They are flowing this week. Here's why!

Lots of learning

"The annual Week of the Young Child (WYOC) celebration from April 10-16, sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), focuses on the importance of an accessible, affordable...

April 1, 2016

When is inclusion done right? Sessions at education conferences where Lynn Fuchs is speaking on this topic (and others related to accessing the curriculum) are always packed.

In the video clip below, Fuchs — the Nicholas Hobbs Professor of Special Education and Human Development at Vanderbilt University — has sage advice about effective inclusion of students with disabilities in...

March 23, 2016

Creating access for learning through audiobooks may one day have full acceptance; yet changes are underway and options are improving so teachers, parents and students have choices about how students listen while learning.

Not created equally

Teachers of students who struggle to read print know that audio formats are not created equally. There is a continuum from listen-only...

March 15, 2016

In the last few weeks I've visited five schools in four states. Each of them educates large numbers of students from low-income homes and students of color, and each is either high-performing or on an impressive improvement trajectory.

The schools are different in lots of ways, but one thing characterizes them all: Teachers, principals, and other administrators work hard at building...

March 11, 2016

Super author Jeff Kinney, best known for his Diary of a Wimpy Kid series and the Wimpy Kid movies, does not have dyslexia, nor do his children, but he champions reading audiobooks! In fact, he personally only reads audiobooks as an alternative to traditional print.

Listening to audiobooks is reading, says Kinney. This view refutes claims by some to the contrary. In...

March 7, 2016

The Swedish animated short, "Falling Letters (Bokstavsbarn)," (4:14 min) by Erik Rosenlund depicts a child who learns differently. In this case, some of the character's everyday actions turn out awkwardly or set them apart socially from peers.

The ending offers a heartwarming reminder of the power that parents, guardians, and teachers or helping personnel can have when simple support...

February 26, 2016

The Open eBooks app debuted this week creating access to digital books for children in need. Right out of the box, there are questions on social media about accessibility features. That is a good thing. Many ebooks are not accessible or accessible enough for seriously struggling readers.

Accessible Educational Materials (AEM)

They need "born accessible" electronic books with...

February 4, 2016

Teachers get ready to contribute in your own way to the literacy festivities ahead. Join the Defined and Caption Media Program's (DCMP) 11th annual Read Captions Across America (RCAA) event!

NEA Partner

DCMP partners with the ...

January 25, 2016

Get ready for the Battle of the Kids’ Books (BoB) that begins March 9. Schools, parent groups, and librarians nationwide work together to put on this "book-centric" equivalent to basketball's exciting March Madness tournament.

Be Inclusive

But wait! Are the chosen books in the competition accessible to students who struggle to read traditional print? AIM-VA offers some ideas...

January 21, 2016

Teachers, parents, and students should be seeing subtle and obvious changes in how dyslexia is identified and how educational services are delivered in schools.

Digital Choices

One simple measure to enact positive change is for educators and parents to act jointly during an Individualized Education Program meeting to bring accessible educational materials (AEM) at no cost to an...

January 13, 2016

Access to instruction means everything if struggling readers are to keep pace with their grade-level peers. AIM-VA blog readers love our stories about chosen apps and websites that help to by-pass textbooks, trade books or other traditional learning materials in print when they prove to be barriers to learning.

Favorite Apps

The following are lists of favorite apps that are shared by...

January 12, 2016

Pinkney Wins Dual ALA Awards in 2016

"I truly believe dyslexia made me the achiever I am in my art, and it made me who I am as a person," said children's book illustrator Jerry Pinkney to Jane Wallace for an article for the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity. Pinkney won two prestigious awards at the 2016 Youth Media Awards on Jan. 11 in Boston. They are the:...

January 4, 2016

2015 was a banner year for all who care about what happens to dyslexic boys, girls, men and women, according to Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity (YCDC) Co-Directors Bennett Shaywitz, MD and Sally Shaywitz, MD.

Open Doors

"Truly, the door has opened and light is beginning to come in for dyslexia," writes the YCDC team in an email. The doctors are referring to a changing...

January 4, 2016

There is no single best way to grow professionally. Here are some "finds" that educators and related services personnel can add to their professional development toolkit. 

1. Reading for All

How to Mix Oil and Water So that Nearly Everyone (including '1 in 5' with poor reading skills) Learns to Read by...

December 24, 2015

When science learning materials in print frustrate or close out students who struggle with traditional learning materials, alternative media can get students back into the game. There are many free digital options that can engage learners and keep their attention while they provide opportunities for skills, understanding, and vocabulary to grow.  

Many Roads To Content

The Smithsonian...

December 21, 2015

Reading for pleasure during school breaks can maintain a struggling student's academic progress and may stave off regressions.

Is Print A Troublemaker?

Titles on the list that follows can turn reading into a happy family affair during the upcoming winter break. These books—chosen by experts—come in accessible book formats that make a difference especially for learners who struggle to...

December 17, 2015

Teacher question:   As I watch the Dyslexia Awareness movement gain momentum and grassroots organizations such as Decoding Dyslexia spur the movement on... I am feeling an increased urgency to take a long hard look at students under my watch that struggle with reading and are eventually diagnosed with a “specific learning disability.” I find myself in agreement that so many...

December 8, 2015

The Iris Center announces a new IRISSTAR Legacy Module, Dual Language Learners with Disabilities: Supporting Young Children in the Classroom. It is free online and offers ideas for serving diverse early...

November 30, 2015

Something unique happened to inform parents about special needs and what a result: a surge in parent awareness about children and youth with learning and attention problems, says a founding partner in Understood.org.

Understood, a free online resource for parents, takes the lead spot in a list of accomplishments in the "Impact Update for November/ December 2015," a report just...

November 24, 2015

NaNoWriMo is a marathon writing event that challenges participants to write the first draft of a 50,000­ word novel in November. There are local chapters in more than 600 regions around the world that organize in-­person workshops and write­-ins throughout the month. 

Struggling Writers

Special education...

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"Today a reader, tomorrow a leader." — Margaret Fuller