Monday, April 6, 2009

From the Week of April 5th

TEACHING SOCIAL SKILLS TO ASPIES is what a UCLA class accomplished in a study reported in Science Daily. Thirty-three teens attended 12 weekly 90-minutes sessions and, compared to a control group, demonstrated improved knowledge of rules of social etiquette, more frequent hosted get-togethers, and a significantly better quality of friendships. Read the article.

MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCES IN "SMARTSVILLE." Edutopia's April issue carries an article about a charter school in Georgia where the concept of multiple intelligences is the core of the educational philosophy. Classroom activities and simulated real-world tasks (in a post office, a bank, a culinary arts institute, or a "Museum of Smart") "allow students to explore and express the multiple ways of being smart," according to the article. Indeed, labels such as "word smart," "body smart," and "nature smart" are in constant use. Read more.

SENSORY-FRIENDLY MOVIE THEATERS. Ever had a sensitive kid, maybe autistic or Aspie, go to pieces during a stimulus-heavy movie? A listserv brought to our attention a program called "Sensory Friendly Films," by AMC. In some of its theaters, chain will offer screenings in which the sound is not as loud as usual and the lighting is not reduced completely. Children will also be able to move about or be vocal while they watch the movies. The arrangement is co-sponsored by the Autism Society of America. Find out more.

CONVERSATIONS WITH MENSA, interviews made available online by the Mensa Education and Resource Foundation, offers "Taking Control of ADD," information about the condition and how to manage it. Listen.

EDUCATION AND EATING DISORDERS. In her blog, Deborah Ruf muses on how our education system may lead to eating disorders in bright young women. The problem: lack of challenge in the early years. "When we treat all children the same during their school years," says Ruf, "we cannot possibly serve all of them well." Find the blog.

EDUTOPIAN RESOURCES. Edutopia has published an article called "Virtual Libraries Are Teaching Treasures," sampling some of the resources available online through libraries. The article describes what's available for voracious learners and teachers through the Library of Congress and the New York Public library. Find out more.

GIFTED AND ANXIOUS. Prufrock Press, a publisher of books and materials for the gifted, has posted a podcast called "Anxiety-Free Kids: Helping Children with Anxiety Disorders." In the podcast, publisher Joel McIntosh interviews Dr. Bonnie Zucker, a clinical psychologist specializing in anxieties and phobias. Length: 38 minutes. Hear it.

WANT TO DEMONSTRATE your feelings about the restrictions for the Amazon electronic book that keep it from using its text-to-speech function for some copyrighted works? Be outside the Authors Guild headquarters at 31 East 32nd Street in New York City on April 7th at 12 noon. Find out more at the site of the Reading Rights Coalition. Many gifted kids depend on text-to-speech functions to help them overcome reading difficulties. [FOLLOW-UP, 4/10. An article in Publisher's Weekly said that 200 demonstrators showed up with signs and chants ("Two, four, six, eight, the Authors Guild Discriminates!") to protest the Kindle restrictions. Read it.]

THE SENSORY PLAYGROUND. CEC SmartBriefs pointed us to an article about a "sensory yard" at a Louisiana school. The yard allows special-needs students to attend to their sensory needs on a large scale by feeling textures, climbing, or using a balance beam or tunnel. The yard, says the article, helps kids relax, work through anxieties, and focus when they return to the classroom. Read the article.

MORE ITEMS as the week passes...

No comments: