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Universal Design for Learning Opportunity for Every Learner
What Is Universal Design for Learning? Universal Design for learning was created to give students the best opportunity to be successful. UDL seeks to do so by offering students the most flexibilty possible in the learning process (Laureate Education, 2010). This idea of creating a learning opportunity for all can be seen around us each day. Braille allows the visually impaired to access the same places as those with vision. Ramps allow those in wheelchairs to access the same buildings as those who walk up the stairs. Hearing assistance allows someone with a hearing impairment to enjoy a show at the theatre. Whatever the example, the goal is the same. That goal is to allow all people the same access and opportunity.
Technology allows the content to be presented, displayed, and used in a flexible manner that allows students to experience an individual education (Laureate Education, 2010).
Research tells us that learning is distributed across 3 networks in the brain Source http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/ideas/tes/chapter2.cfm Recognition Affective Strategic
RECOGNITION The recognition network is responsible for helping us make sense of what we take in through the five senses. (Rose & Meyer, 2002)
Strategic The strategic network is responsible for helping us plan actions and make patterns. (Rose & Meyer, 2002)
Affective The affective network is responsible for attaching Emotions to the patterns That the brain recognizes. (Rose & Meyer, 2002)
The brain works in many different ways and this process is unique in each learner. Given that fact, educators must understand these learning networks in the brain and learn to identify areas in which students excel and areas in which they struggle (Rose & Meyer, 2002). UDL utilizes these concepts, along with the power and flexibility of technology to help teachers create a classroom in which students have access to a unique education that is appropriate for each learner’s individualized needs.
The Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) offers many online resources that provide assistance to educators seeking to implement UDL strategies in the classroom
http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/tools/classprofile.cfm The class profile maker aids in creating a class profile of interests and strengths based upon the UDL framework
http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/tools/curriculumbarriers.cfm The curriculum barriers finder helps teachers to identify areas in the curriculum which may be hinderingsome students from reaching their full learning potential
http://lessonbuilder.cast.org/ The lesson builder provides sample lessons based on UDL principles as well as the opportunity for teachers to create and save their own UDL-based lesson plans
UDL @ Elida By using these CAST tools, Elida could improve by: Become more aware of learner differences by creating a class learning profile 2. Identifying weaknesses in the curricula so that every student has a better learning opportunity 3. Create UDL-based lessons that integrate technology
Sources Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2010a). Program ten. Reaching and Engaging All Learners. [Webcast]. Universal Design for Learning. MD: Author. Rose, D. & Meyer, A. (2002) Teaching Every Student in the Digital Age.Baltimore: ASCD. Retrieved October 1, 2011, from http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent /ideas/tes/index.cfm