Scruple 1 As a new teacher, you constantly try to find new ways of engaging your students’ attention in the material you teach. In spite of all your efforts, you are finding that a good number of students are text messaging or hanging out on Facebook, MySpace or Twitter. You really need students to concentrate on the material in your next lecture – what do you do?
You decide that you will ask the students to close or put away their laptops so that they can better concentrate on the material you are teaching. Oops! As you make this decision, you recall that some students use laptops for disability-related reasons. How can you follow through with your decision while respecting these students’ accessibility needs?
What would you do?A) Tell yourself that any students with disabilities in your class can forgo their use of laptops for this one lecture.B) Prepare and distribute hard copies of your lecture notes at the beginning of class.C) When asking the students to put away their laptops, tell them you have posted your lecture notes on the course website and that they can access them after class.
The Answer is… C While option B may seem reasonable, only option C, which makes the notes available electronically, recognizes the fact that some students with disabilities may use a laptop for a variety of disability- related reasons, including the use of screen-reading software. It is important to recognize that in certain circumstances students may absolutely require the use of a laptop for disability-related reasons.
Scruple 2 One of your students is deaf and has a sign language interpreter accompanying your student to class. Coincidently, you attend the same gym as does Raul, the sign language interpreter. The two of you have gotten to know each other fairly well over the past couple of months. Before the start of class, you go over to Raul as he’s standing next to your student and ask Raul about his weekend and whether or not he is attending the staff party. How do you think Raul should respond?
A) Interpret your question to your student in sign language and answer the question both in voice and using sign language.C) Reply to your question in voice.E) Signal to you that he will catch up with you later.
The correct answer is… A As part of their professional code of conduct, sign language interpreters are required to interpret everything during the time they are providing access for persons who are deaf. This includes conversations that are typically not seen as a part of the official EA- student relationship This is why interpreters ask hearing persons to avoid engaging them in “side” conversations not intended for the person who is deaf.
Scruple 3 A new student arrives at your school in clothing that is traditional to her/his heritage or country. People start teasing, making mean comments, and excluding the new student. What do you do?
Scruple 4 You were away and your class has a supply teacher. When you return, you overhear the students talking and laughing about the teacher’s accent. They are making rude comments. What do you do?
Scruple 5 You are picking up a chocolate bar at the cafeteria and you hear a negative comment about a particular group of people (for example, a religious group, an ethnic group, etc). What do you do?
Scruple 6 Your colleague uses language that perpetuates racism and discrimination — for example, they keep talking about stereotypical images, even when referring to themselves (“I’m having such a ‘blond’ day today”). What do you do?