INDUSTRYFOCUS 18 Developing Skilled Manu Man IMPO • MAY 2011 Identifying Learning Challenges and Applying Appropriate Teaching Methods By Glenn Marshall, Director-at-Large of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence A ccording to a speech delivered by President Obama in particularly for those who find learning challenging. 2009, nearly 7,000 students drop out of school every In order to improve the educational system and address students’ day and only one-third of all graduating students can learning needs, the first step is to understand each student’s learn- perform at the 12th-grade level. Fifteen million children, ing capabilities. Identifying learning challenges early and applying adolescents, and adults with learning disabilities want opportunities appropriate teaching methods is the key to their future successes. to succeed. One in five students has dyslexia, and one in every Students must have the ability to use their skills fully, and teach- 110 American children has been diagnosed with autism, including one in 70 males. A recent Emmy Award-winning movie, based Although developing qualified workers on the life of Temple Grandin, Ph.D., brought starts in the schools, industry profession- to life the thinking patterns of individuals with autism spectrum disorders and, more importantly, als must revitalize the manufacturing sec- the accomplishments they are capable of with the right nurturing. Grandin says, “While impairments tor now, so future generations have the and challenges do exist, greater progress can be made teaching these individuals when parents and opportunities for which they long. teachers work on building the child’s strengths and ers, parents, and employers must know how to help them succeed in teach in a manner that is aligned with their basic pattern of think- school, work, and the community. ing.” Without skilled workers in manufacturing, the North American One of TIME magazine’s 25 “Heroes” of 2010, Grandin will economy would not function. The National Association of speak during the AME International Excellence Inside Conference. Manufacturers (NAM) and its Council of Manufacturing She will share her challenges and experiences working in the Associations published a 2010 report, “Manufacturing Resurgence: manufacturing sector as an individual with autism, and will explore A Must for U.S. Prosperity,” which reinforces the notion that manu- methods for successfully teaching students with learning disabilities. facturing production creates more substantial economic activity than Following her doctorate research on the effect of environmental any other sector. NAM reported that 80 percent of manufacturers enrichment on the behavior of pigs, Grandin published hundreds of surveyed are experiencing an overall shortage of qualified work- industry publications, book chapters, and technical papers, as well ers. We must all remember that developing these qualified workers as 45 refereed journal articles and seven books. She has done started in the schools. extensive work designing handling facilities; in fact, half The educational systems must provide relevant cur- the cattle in the U.S. and Canada are handled in equip- riculums and teaching styles to help students actively ment she has designed. Currently a professor of ani- participate and learn the basics. For example, dyslexia—a mal sciences at Colorado State University, Grandin learning disorder that makes reading, writing, and spelling continues her research and teaches courses on live- difficult—is not caused by lack of intelligence or desire stock handling and facility design. to learn. With appropriate teaching methods, individu- Throughout the years, organizations—and manu- als with dyslexia or other learning challenges can excel. facturers, in particular—have realized that preparing Grandin suggests implementing hands-on courses in the next generation of workers is an integral step in high school, such as art, carpentry, drafting, welding, and securing well-trained employees who can help fuel sewing, as those classes stimulate practical problem- future economic prosperity. Engaging parents, com- solving skills. Studies indicate that dyslexia is munities, and businesses in the educational particularly prevalent among small business system can positively affect students’ owners, with approximately 20 to 35 per- academic and social performances, cent of U.S. and British entrepreneursIMPO_1105_IndustryFocus.indd 18 4/19/2011 2:46:29 PM
IMPO w w w. i m p o m a g . c o m INDUSTRIAL ENCLOSUREManufacturers anufacturers affected by dyslexia. Many coping strategies are developed subcon- HARDWARE for a cleaner environment RoHS COMPLIANT sciously by the individuals, but it all goes back to understanding how each individual learns. Although developing qualified workers starts in the schools, indus- try professionals must revitalize the manufacturing sector now, so future generations have the opportunities for which they long. To accomplish this, businesses need the help of both public and private sectors. Policy-makers must provide an infrastructure with the neces- Request sary resources; and business, government, academia, labor unions, your free and learning organizations must collectively focus on developing and catalog sustaining a successful, lifelong learning environment. To increase businesses’ competitiveness and workers’ productivity, the educational system must produce students and workers capable of quickly master- ing new skills and adopting new ways of thinking and learning. Glenn Marshall is a Director-at-Large of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence and Benchmarking Champion at Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding. Contact Marshall at glenn.mar- firstname.lastname@example.org. All Metric Small Parts T. 516.302.0152 F. 516.302.0153 www.amsp.biz AME Dallas 2011 Indicate 204 on inquiry card The Association for Manufacturing Excellence invites public and private organizations to share best practices and lessons learned to help grow and sustain a prosperous economy, while filling the demands for a skilled workforce, at its 2011 International Excellence Inside Conference in Dallas, October 24-28, 2011. This years keynote speakers will include the aforementioned Temple Grandin, along with Mike Rother, author of the bestselling book, Toyota READY FOR ANYTHING. Kata, and Gus Whalen, Chairman of The Warren The Goodway DV-E2 and DV-RV2 deliver extreme vacuum Featherbone Company of Gainesville, GA. performance, customized to your needs. Other notable highlights include conferences on Twin industrial-strength motors tackle industry topics such as “Lean Enterprise Business extreme wet or dry vacuuming — from Simulation, “Approaching Zero Equipment ” ultra-fine dust to metal shavings. The Stoppages, “Cultures that Build Winning Dream ” detachable roll-out tank is easy to Teams, “Lean Tools for the Office, and many more. ” ” store, while the external filter shaker eliminates downtime. AME is still offering early bird registration Customized the way you want it. discounts through June 30th. For more information, Clean the better way. Clean the Goodway. or to register, visit www.ameconference.org. Get the right answer, right now! DV-E2 and DV-RV2 Extreme vacuum performance, 888 364-7735 customized to your needs. THE BEST WAY IS www.goodway.com/ ® vacuums Indicate 205 on inquiry card IMPO_1105_IndustryFocus.indd 19 4/19/2011 2:46:47 PM
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