Practical Access Podcast

Dr. Lisa Dieker, a professor at the University of Kansas in the Department of Special Education, and Dr. Rebecca Hines, a professor at the University of Central Florida in the College of Community Innovation and Education, have worked with schools and parents across the country. Dr. Dieker directs a center in the Achievement and Assessment Institute call Flexible Learning through Innovations in Technology in Education (FLITE) and Dr. Hines directs several doctoral grants and the teacher preparation program. In this podcast, they take a fun and informal look at "practical" solutions from teachers, parents, and people with disabilities. The approach in this podcast is to provide fast, flexible thinking about "real" life problems. This podcast is not about the "legal" approach but their best advice from personal and professional experience.

read less
EducationEducation
How ToHow To
Self-ImprovementSelf-Improvement

Episodes

Creating Inclusive Classrooms: Strategies, and Building Relationships
Apr 29 2024
Creating Inclusive Classrooms: Strategies, and Building Relationships
Summary:  In this episode of "Practical Access," hosts Lisa Dieker and Rebecca Hines are joined by Dr. Maggie Mosher, an assistant research professor at the Achievement and Assessment Institute at the University of Kansas. Dr. Mosher specializes in using evidence-based practices and innovative technologies to improve academic, social, emotional, and behavioral instruction for students, particularly those with high-incidence disabilities. The discussion covers various topics, including building relationships with students and families, setting goals, progress monitoring, and leveraging technology in education.Resources:https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Maggie-Mosherhttps://shorturl.at/klGOWhttps://voissadvisor.org/https://www.projectvoiss.org/  Highlights:  - Building Relationships: Dr. Mosher emphasizes the importance of building strong relationships with students and families as a foundation for effective teaching and learning. She highlights the significance of getting to know students individually, understanding their goals, and collaborating with families to support students' academic and personal growth. -Personalized Instruction: The discussion underscores the importance of personalized instruction tailored to meet the unique needs of students, particularly those with high-incidence disabilities. Dr. Mosher advocates for individualized goal-setting and progress monitoring to ensure that instruction is meaningful and effective for every learner.- Practical Strategies: Practical strategies for teachers include minimizing teacher talk time, using graphic organizers, and making connections between learning objectives and real-world applications. These strategies help engage students, enhance understanding, and foster a positive learning environment. - Technology Integration: Dr. Mosher shares insights into the transformative role of technology in education, particularly tools like PDF readers and note-taking apps. These tools enable students to access information more effectively and manage tasks efficiently, thereby enhancing accessibility and productivity in the learning process.
Unleashing Student Potential: Strategies from a Veteran Teacher including using AI
Apr 12 2024
Unleashing Student Potential: Strategies from a Veteran Teacher including using AI
Summary:In this episode of "Practical Access," hosts Lisa Dieker and Rebecca Hines welcome special guest Dave Stewart Jr., a veteran high school teacher with nearly two decades of experience teaching English and history and his journey with AI. Dave also writes articles and books to support fellow educators in their classroom practices. The conversation delves into integrating AI tools like ChatGPT into the classroom environment. Dave shares his initial apprehensions about the impact of AI on teaching but highlights the practical applications he's discovered, such as using ChatGPT for brainstorming sessions and debates. Despite concerns about students potentially relying too heavily on AI for their work, Dave emphasizes the importance of maintaining focus on the central purpose of education: fostering critical thinking and independent learning. Resources: Dave Stuart Website: https://davestuartjr.com/about/ Highlights:- Exploring AI in Education: Dave Stewart Jr., an experienced high school teacher, joins hosts Lisa Dieker and Rebecca Heinz to discuss the integration of AI tools like ChatGPT in the classroom. - Practical Applications: Dave shares how he uses ChatGPT for brainstorming sessions and debates, dispelling concerns about over-reliance on AI and emphasizing its supplementary role in teaching. - Teacher as Coach: The conversation highlights the role of teachers as coaches in guiding students' learning journeys and fostering intrinsic motivation. - Cultivating Key Beliefs: Dave outlines five key beliefs educators should cultivate in students to promote meaningful learning experiences.
S11: E2 Beyond the Screen: Social Learning with VOISS in VR environments with Dr. Sean Smith
Apr 5 2024
S11: E2 Beyond the Screen: Social Learning with VOISS in VR environments with Dr. Sean Smith
Summary:In this week's episode, we delve into the cutting-edge realm of virtual reality (VR) technology, specifically tailored to assist students in mastering problem-solving within social contexts through simulated scenarios mirroring real-world challenges. Our guest, Sean Smith, serves as the Principal Investigator for Project VOISS, alongside his role as a professor in the Department of Special Education at the University of Kansas. Sean provides valuable insights into the project's overarching goal: fostering knowledge and skills acquisition through evidence-based practices geared towards addressing social issues among middle school-aged students. VOISS stands as a groundbreaking computer-based VR platform, immersing students in diverse school environments such as classrooms, buses, and hallways. Here, they navigate through interactive social narratives and confront situations demanding problem-solving skills. Join us as we uncover the innovative strategies behind VOISS, aimed at empowering students with essential social competencies for navigating the complexities of the real world.Resources: VOISS Advisor: https://voissadvisor.org/  Sean Smith Email: seanj@ku.edu  Highlights:-Targeting Social Competence: Providing immersive experiences for individuals lacking social skills. -Evidence-Based Practice: Focus on developing social knowledge and skills through proven methods. -Simulated Educational Environment: Students engage in less immersive VR scenarios mimicking school challenges. -Guided Interaction: Narrator and coach guide students through scenarios, interacting with avatars. -Targeted Questions & Skill Transfer: Children are prompted to respond to questions tailored to individual growth needs. These questions help guide them to make decisions/ mistakes and gain consequences in a confined environment. They can learn from them and apply them in real-life situations.  -Domain Application: Receptive and expressive communication domains crucial, with applications in school, home, and community settings. -Practical Classroom Implementation: Steps outlined for middle schoolers, aligning curriculum with targeted skills and domains.
S11: E1 The Rise of EL and AI in Classroom Learning with Tiffanie Zaugg
Mar 29 2024
S11: E1 The Rise of EL and AI in Classroom Learning with Tiffanie Zaugg
Summary:Join us as we delve into the  developing world of AI and the impacts it has in classrooms. Explore it's benefits, power, and mind-bending potential within the classroom. Tiffanie, a former AAC Coordinator in the school district of Iowa, joins us to elaborate on the integration of AI technology in classrooms. Meet El, Tiffanie's innovative chatbot designed to revolutionize teaching practices and enhance student learning experiences.Resources:1. Chatbots:https://www.canva.com/design/DAF4ZnhZ8TI/bGhftIi8zBjLuBFANJBP2w/view?utm_content=DAF4ZnhZ8TI&utm_campaign=designshare&utm_medium=link&utm_source=editor2. Potential AI prompts for teachers:https://www.canva.com/design/DAF4ZqYl_jw/_olvAwhe1ckWTsQEOGmmRQ/view?utm_content=DAF4ZqYl_jw&utm_campaign=designshare&utm_medium=link&utm_source=editorHighlights:-Introduction to El: Explore how El, a groundbreaking chatbot, is transforming classrooms by providing personalized support and assistance to teachers and students.-Support for Teachers: Discover how El streamlines classroom management and enhances teaching strategies by organizing lesson plans, providing real-time feedback, and empowering educators to create engaging learning environments.-Enhanced Student Interaction: Experience the power of El's interactive prompts and personalized responses, fostering meaningful interactions with students and promoting active participation in learning activities.-Future Implications: Explore the limitless potential of El in educational settings, paving the way for a more efficient, interactive, and personalized approach to education.
S10 E6: Inclusive Education for Diverse Needs (including visual needs) with Dr. Avien Henry
Dec 15 2023
S10 E6: Inclusive Education for Diverse Needs (including visual needs) with Dr. Avien Henry
This episode of Practical Access features Avien Henry, the Principal of the Children's Learning Center at Helen Keller Services. During this episode, she, along with Drs. Lisa Dieker and Rebecca Hines provide valuable insights into early childhood education for children with special needs. Dr. Henry's experience and strategies offer practical advice for educators and parents seeking to create supportive, inclusive, and effective learning environments for young learners with diverse needs. Also, she discusses the unique approaches and tools used in her preschool program to support diverse learners.ResourcesLink to Taptillo: https://www.taptilo.com/Key Points Discussed:1.  Dr. Henry's Background and School Overview:  Dr. Henry details her transition from working in public schools to her current role at a preschool specializing in children with visual impairments, autism, and other multiple disabilities. 2. Transitioning to Specialized Early Education: Insights on shifting from a general education setting to a niche school focusing on early intervention and specialized needs.3. Parental Partnerships and Communication: Emphasis on working closely with parents as partners and maintaining open communication to understand each child's needs better.4. Classroom Setup and Instructional Strategies: Utilizing visuals and tactile elements, structured and small group activities, and specialized programs like touch math to support learning.5. Movement and Safety in Classroom: Balancing the need for movement with safety, especially for visually impaired students. Strategies include guided exploration and consistent classroom layouts.6. Inclusive and Structured Environments: Creating inclusive classrooms that cater to various needs while maintaining structure. Importance of functional and purposeful classroom setups.7. Technology in Early Education: Discuss technology like Tactillo, a tactile device linked to an app that facilitates braille learning for visually impaired students.8. Early Intervention and Advice for Parents: Dr. Henry stresses the importance of early intervention and encourages parents to seek support and trust their instincts regarding their child's development.9. Closing Thoughts: Dr. Henry advises parents and educators to be proactive in supporting early childhood education and to seek appropriate resources and interventions.
S10 E5: Using Technology Based-Solutions for Professional Development
Dec 13 2023
S10 E5: Using Technology Based-Solutions for Professional Development
This episode of Practical Access discusses Drs. Lisa Dieker & Rebecca Hines' Federal Grant project called FLIGHT STEM Coaching,  which focuses on assisting math and science coaches in supporting special education teachers. The project utilizes a tool called Debriefscape, offering a comprehensive coaching and professional development approach.FLIGHT STEM Coaching with Debriefscape represents an innovative approach to professional development and coaching in special education. By combining video technology, targeted resource gathering, and a flexible coaching model, the project aims to enhance math and science teaching in special education settings. The episode encourages educators to explore and adapt these tools to their individual and institutional needs, contributing to the evolution of inclusive and effective teaching practices.Website: https://www.cs.ucf.edu/~ceh/EDGrants/DScape/YouTube video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Obw0D0dCJJsKey Points Discussed:1. Purpose of FLIGHT STEM Coaching: This initiative aims to aid coaches (including principals) in guiding special education teachers who are teaching math and science. The acronym FLIGHT stands for Flexible Learning through Innovations and Technology in Education, highlighting the project's focus on adaptable and technology-driven educational strategies.2. Debriefscape as a Coaching Tool: The hosts discuss the utility of Debriefscape in facilitating effective coaching. This tool allows for video recording of teaching sessions, where behaviors can be tagged and reviewed. It is designed for both self-reflection by teachers and for use by coaches in providing targeted feedback.3. Professional Development Resources: The project includes resources for teachers to pursue their professional development independently, moving away from a top-down coaching model to a more personalized approach.4. Targeted Support for Math and Science: Recognizing the limited resources in special education for math and science, the project gathers and vets resources specifically beneficial for these subjects, ensuring they align with best practices in special education.5. Biometric Data Integration: The project is exploring the integration of biometrics, such as heart rate monitoring, to provide insights into teachers' responses during teaching and coaching sessions.6. Customizable and User-Friendly: Debriefscape and the associated resources are designed to be customizable and user-friendly, catering to the specific needs of different educators and contexts. This includes the potential for districts to add their specific goals, like trauma-informed skills or math competencies.7. Ongoing Development and Accessibility: The project is in its development stages, with plans to include around 1,500 resources. All tools and resources developed through this project will be freely available online.
S10 E4: Enhancing Social Skills and Learning through AI and Robotics
Dec 11 2023
S10 E4: Enhancing Social Skills and Learning through AI and Robotics
In this episode of Practical Access, Lisa Dieker and Rebecca Hines discuss Project RAISE (Robots and Artificial Intelligence to Improve Social Skills for Elementary Students), a federally funded initiative aimed at integrating AI and robotics in educational settings. The project is a collaboration with UCP of Central Florida and led by computer science expert Charlie Hughes, among others.Link to website: https://www.ucf.edu/research/research-project/raise-robots-and-artificial-intelligence-to-improve-social-skills-for-elementary-students/Key Points:1. Purpose of Project RAISE: The project focuses on using robotics and AI to aid the development of social and communication skills in elementary students, particularly those with autism spectrum disorders. The initiative seeks to merge technology, engineering, science, and math skills with targeted social skills training.2. Engagement with Technology and Peers: The project involves students learning to code robots through an interactive AI agent, fostering both technical and social skills. Students first work with the AI agent alone and then bring a friend to collaborate, promoting social interactions and peer teaching.3. Use of Avatar in Classroom: An avatar named Zoobee guides students through activities and provides non-judgmental, consistent feedback, reinforcing positive behaviors. This AI component helps students practice communication in a safe, controlled environment.4. Recording and Analyzing Student Interactions: The project involves recording and analyzing student interactions with the AI and peers to study social reciprocity in conversations. This data helps in understanding and improving social skills among participants.5. Biometrics for Emotional Recognition: The project also experiments with biometrics, using devices to monitor physiological changes indicative of stress. This aspect aims to understand and respond to the emotional needs of students better.6. Impact on Students with Autism: The hosts discuss the potential of such AI-driven projects to significantly aid students with autism by providing a safe space to interact, learn, and express emotions.7. Future Directions and Accessibility: The project aims to make its resources available for broader use after completion. The hosts emphasize the importance of such initiatives in making education more inclusive and tailored to individual student needs.
S10 E3: A.I. in Education:  Opportunities and Challenges
Dec 8 2023
S10 E3: A.I. in Education: Opportunities and Challenges
In this follow-up episode on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Drs. Lisa Dieker and Rebecca Hines explore its multifaceted role. The discussion is framed around a book by Reid Hoffman, written in collaboration with ChatGPT, focusing on the impact and potential of AI in enhancing human capabilities in educational settings.Link to Reid Hoffman & ChatGPT Discussion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=myWPwwj0THEThis episode highlights the need for educators and students to approach AI as a critical tool that can significantly enhance learning experiences and outcomes when used ethically and creatively. The hosts encourage listeners to engage with AI mindfully, focusing on developing critical thinking skills and using AI to supplement human intellect, not a replacement.Key Points Discussed:1. AI as an Educational Tool: The hosts debate comparing AI to past educational technologies like calculators and the internet. 2. AI’s Potential in Problem-Solving: The discussion emphasizes AI as a tool for researchers and educators to solve critical problems by enabling creative thought. Lisa shares a story illustrating the transformative power of internet information, underscoring the need for critical examination of AI-generated content like Khan Amigos.  Link: https://www.khanacademy.org/khan-labs3. Critical Thinking and AI: The episode stresses the importance of developing critical thinking skills alongside AI literacy. 4. Navigating AI's Limitations and Misinformation: Dr. Dieker discusses the 'hallucinations' of AI, including nonsensical responses, plausible but incorrect information, and AI's overreach in claiming capacities it doesn't possess. This leads to a conversation about the importance of using AI responsibly and ethically in classrooms.5. Empowering Students with AI: The hosts advocate for introducing AI technology to students early, teaching them to seek answers and support their learning independently. They emphasize the role of AI in leveling the playing field, particularly for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.6. AI and Assessments: The conversation concludes with the potential of AI in designing assessments that analyze and indicate students' critical thinking and creativity, moving beyond traditional fact-based testing.
S10 E2: Harnessing A.I.
Dec 6 2023
S10 E2: Harnessing A.I.
This episode of Practical Access offers a comprehensive look at how AI can be a valuable asset in education, from assisting in lesson planning to enhancing student engagement. Drs. Lisa Dieker & Rebecca Hines encourage educators to explore AI tools, considering ethical considerations and the potential for increased efficiency and customization in teaching and learning.Key Points Discussed:1. Customization through AI: Dr. Hines highlights the potential of AI, like ChatGPT, in assisting teachers with customization and differentiation in their teaching methods. Link: www.chatGPT.com2. Ethical Use and Bias in AI: Dr. Dieker points out the importance of ethical use of AI in education. She emphasizes the need to be aware of potential biases in AI outputs, especially regarding historical and cultural content.3. AI as a Scaffold in Education: The hosts discuss how AI can serve as a scaffold in education, aiding in tasks like writing and research. 4. Empowering Students with AI: The conversation touches on how students can be empowered to use AI for tasks like crafting topic sentences or supporting arguments, fostering independence, and skill-building.5. Innovative AI Tools and Applications: The hosts mention several AI tools like DALL-E and Blabberize, discussing how these can add novelty and engagement in the classroom. Link: https://openai.com/dall-e-2Link: https://blabberize.com6. Encouraging Clear Communication with AI: The hosts discuss how using AI can help students develop clear and concise communication skills, as precise input leads to more relevant AI-generated content.__________________________Don't forget we love to hear from our listeners. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out. We look forward to receiving your questions on our Google Phone (407) 900- 9305, Facebook (Practical Access), Twitter (@AccessPractical), or Instagram (@Practical_Access).