by John Effinger
Let’s Get the Conversation Started!
I’ ve used the ‘The Case Against AT’ video four times in the last month as an icebreaker to start the conversation…how to implement assistive technology in our schools. Let me just say, everyone loves the video, educators, administrators, specialists. Each person who views it has positive comments and is empowered to help students reach their potential.
Yes, it’s a great video…that is if you use it. SIGH
Recently, I was asked to do a one-hour training to a group of administrators in rural Missouri. I made the appointment over a month ago and it slipped my mind as to what group of folks I’d be talking with. My mind always thinks special education and I assume way too much. Because when I arrived to give my presentation on the options of AT for students, I realized I might be in trouble. It became clear that I was presenting to school principals; not special ed teachers. What to do?
I pondered if I had prepared the wrong presentation and I realized I didn’t have time to change what I was going to discuss. I could see that this group of administrators needed more inspiration than me talking about reading software for LD students. It was late in the day and the room felt really hot. For a second, I was a comedian who needed an opening act to warm up the crowd. What could I use to break the ice?
The video ‘The Case Against AT‘ would have been perfect, if I had used it. You know that I kicked myself the three-hour ride home wishing I had opened my training with it. Darn!
We all want to think that we’re inspirational when we work with others; I do. I want the things that I have to say and share to be interesting, but sometimes when I roll the dice on what will get a group of educators excited, I now know what to use. This video! No matter the group, this four minute video will stimulate their thinking, prepare them to look at cool AT tools with fresh eyes…and spur their discussion topics forward.
I made a promise that I will use ‘The Case Against AT‘ to get the conversation started. It will always be my opening act and I will ride on the coat tails of its intention and success. Will you use it too?
John Effinger, M.S. CCC-SLP, Blue Springs, MO
Missouri Assistive Technology (MOAT)