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Category Archives: students

Why Do You Need Keyboarding Skills?

“Since personal computers were widely introduced in the early 1980’s, more and more jobs have required keyboarding skills. Fortunately, the keys on a keyboard are similar to those on a typewriter and most people made a quick transition to keyboarding. Today, any job that requires the use of a computer also requires keyboarding skills, especially for the facilitation, storage and accuracy of work.” Rick Suttle Here are a list of jobs that require keyboarding skills: Marketing Research Manager: This position require keyboarding skills to design questions, work with databases, use various statistical models, write reports and develop presentation pieces. Data Entry and Processing: type information into computers. Receptionist: This position needs keyboarding skills to reference client lists or patients when they come in for a visit. Engineer: All engineers need basic keyboarding skills to work with CAD (computer-assisted design) and CAM … Read More

Don’t “Write Off Writing” Instruction : Creative Ideas for Teaching Composition to Your Struggling Learner

By Faith Berens, M.Ed HSLDA Special Needs Consultant “I am frustrated with trying to teach my child to write properly! His spelling is atrocious, and he does not use punctuation or capitalize consistently. Maybe he is just lazy? His writing is also short and poorly organized, and I don’t even want to talk about grammar! We do copy work and have tried so many workbooks on grammar, usage, and mechanics, but they are not helping. Should I just forget about writing instruction and focus on the other basics? Please help!” —Frustrated homeschooling parent Many parents, particularly those who do not enjoy writing or who feel it is not a personal area of strength, get overwhelmed when it comes to teaching their children to write, particularly when one of them is a struggling student. Parents sometimes mistake their child’s difficulties for … Read More

How Computers Change the Writing Process

Recently, while perusing the internet, I found this interesting article about how computers changed the writing process for people with learning disabilities. It was written by Richard Wanderman.  I was taken back by how much Richard and I agreed with this concept.  As an educator who has taught students how to type for the past 16 years, it was refreshing to see this concept finally taking center stage! Richard was an adult with learning disabilities when he discovered how important it was to work on a computer to write instead of using the pencil and paper mode.  As he says, “In fact, if I didn’t write with a computer I wouldn’t be able to share this article with you because I wouldn’t be able to record, work with, and share my ideas and I wouldn’t know from personal experience how … Read More

WHY JOHNNY CAN’T TYPE

“Johnny” from Massachusetts is your typical 10 year-old.  The oldest of four, his mother “Susan” has stressed the importance of a well-rounded education from the time Johnny and his siblings were old enough to attend preschool.  She’s a supporter of the new federal Common Core Curriculum guidelines as a way to fundamentally improve the basic skills students will need to succeed in the real world.  Susan also sees education as a parent-teacher partnership and has always been on the lookout for ways to reinforce Johnny’s in-school studies with books, games, and exercises that will give him the skills he’ll need to pursue a successful career. Early on, Susan recognized the importance of the computer to her son’s education and development and tried to incorporate the latest electronic software into his after-school day.  There was only one problem.  Johnny didn’t know … Read More

Make Your Kids Responsible For Their Actions

Make Your Kids Responsible for Their Actions By Jim Fay A joke hit the Internet recently. The problem is that it is not a joke. It’s a serious concern to all those who work with today’s youth. A high school staff met to design the perfect recording for their telephone answering machine. The staff looked at several possibilities and finally agreed on the following: To lie about why your child is absent – Press 1 To make excuses for why your child did not do his work – Press 2 To complain about what we do – Press 3 To swear at staff members – Press 4 To ask why you didn’t get information that was already enclosed in your newsletter and several flyers mailed to you – Press 5 If you want us to raise your child – Press … Read More

Teacher Conferences will be here before you know it!

I can hear it now….why isn’t ‘Johnny’ progressing in his work?  Why can’t he take good notes?  Why can’t he keep up in class? Well, you are not alone if you hear those words!  As parents, we go into overdrive to solve these problems.  We don’t like to see our kids struggling.  We see that look of defeat on their faces and it drains us-we hate to hear them say, “I’m just not smart”! There are many answers for those questions.  I can help in the written communication aspect of learning.  Writing is an important skill for ALL students.  However, some students find writing extremely difficult to learn and to master.  As the Director of an educational program at the Ben Bronz Academy in Ct. I worked with many students who had a hard time manipulating a pencil/pen.  We introduced … Read More

10 Tips for a Successful School Year by Pat Howey, Advocate

Question: Help! School is starting. I want to make sure I have done my homework so this year is better than last year. Answer: You need to view your role as your child’s “case manager.”  You need to be watchful, even when things appear to be going well. Here are ten tips to help you get off to a good start at the beginning of the new school year. 1. Help Your Child Deal with Transitions. Is your child making the transition from preschool to kindergarten, from elementary to middle school, or from middle school to high school? Plan to take your child to visit the new school or classroom before the first day of school. 2. Reread your child’s IEP. Do you understand what the school agreed to provide? Do your child’s teachers understand what they are to provide? … Read More

Out with the Old… In with the New!

“If you want to succeed you should strike out on new paths, rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success.” John D. Rockefeller Doesn’t that say it all!  My new mission is to get schools to throw out their ‘old school mentality’ and embrace the new ways of doing things.  Students have a different mentality towards learning because of the way they were brought up with technology.  Their brains work faster, their learning style is quicker and they expect to multitask as they are learning. As Alan Cohen says: “It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.” … Read More

Time to get serious about the Typing Program you are using!

I read an article in The Hartford Courant about “allowing students to bring to school any online device they had- Smartphone, tablet or laptop- for use in class as teachers saw fit.”  Educators are realizing that it makes no sense to stop students from using the digital tools they use outside of school.” I totally agree with this but I do have one concern.  Why would you hand a student a laptop and NOT teach them how to touch type beforehand?  You don’t drive a car until you take driver’s ed….you don’t jump into a pool before you learn to swim….you don’t give a child a book without teaching them how to read first.  My point is that there are steps to learning how to do something.  You don’t start at step 10 and work backwards!  You start at the … Read More

I found my Passion!

I have been a very happy educator for the past 23 years….There is nothing better than to see a student overcome an obstacle and see themselves as confident and successful. As Mickey Rooney says, “You always pass failure on the way to success.” My job is to be sure I give my students enough skills to use when fighting for success.  There will be plenty of roadblocks in their lives.  The secret is to be able to jump over the obstacles and keep yourself in a forward motion. As Sir Winston Churchill reminds us, “Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.” So now I HAVE come upon a personal roadblock.  I have noticed that one skill is missing from their curriculum….learning how to touch-type.  Now you may think this is a … Read More


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