Saturday, March 13, 2010

TED inspirations

TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) is a great source of "talks"- 5-15 minute interactive, visual presentations by experts in all sorts of fields. The videos are taped during TED conferences, which cost an enormous amount of money and influence to attend. However, all the talks are made available online for us little folks to watch. I find they are really inspirational, illuminate how many fields of knowledge are related, and show that it's all really about language. TED actually has an iPhone app, and you can often see geeks like me watching TED videos if you end up next to me on the elliptical at the gym.

Temple Grandin's wonderful recent talk has obvious implications for our practice, and reminds me how important it is to visually support our students' learning, especially those on the autism spectrum. I also appreciate her advocacy for using technology as a context to encourage different kinds of learners--I find that if I bring my laptop into a social skills group, it can often bring the kids together socially:

" ... there is all kinds of great stuff on the internet, to get these kids turned on. Because I'm seeing a lot of these geeky nerdy kids, and the teachers out in the midwest, and the other parts of the country, when you get away from these tech areas, they don't know what to do with these kids. And they are not going down the right path."

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