IN ALASKA THERE are more than 140 public high schools with fewer than 20 students. So how do a small number of teachers offer all the different classes a student needs to graduate? Some think the answer lies in teaching more courses online – and a new statewide consortium is figuring out how to offer them.
KTD contributor Jessica Cochran has more.
IT USED TO be that kids with hearing loss weren’t diagnosed until they were about two-and half years old - at the stage when they should be developing language skills the way other kids were, but weren't. Now, thanks to better technology and mandatory newborn hearing screening, babies are often diagnosed before they are three months old.
As KTD Contributor Jessica Cochran reports, there are lots of ways to help even young babies and toddlers develop good communication. Listen below...
AT THE LINGUISTIC and Assistive Technologies Laboratory or LATLab at the City University of New York in Queens, lab director Dr. Matt Huenerfouth is studying how to produce software that would generate animations of sign language for the deaf and hearing impaired population. There is a need for this type of technology because for those who have been deaf their whole life, reading written English is a challenge.
The average reading level among deaf high school graduates is a fourth grade level. American Sign Language is a completely different language than spoken English so it's understandable that for children whose mother tongue is ASL that they would have trouble in traditional schooling environments where lessons are taught in spoken/written English. One of the biggest challenges in deaf education is confronting these literacy challenges, but graduate-level research at CUNY are seeking to close the gap for hearing impaired students.
Here in Alaska, many types of assistive technology are used in the classroom to assist hearing impaired students. Kaela Parks is the director of Disability Support Services at the University of Alaska Anchorage. This department arranges for classroom interpreters and also stocks an assortment of technologies for students and professors to use in the classroom. Their mission is two-fold – accommodating disabled students, and also sharing their resources with others in the state.
KTD Producer Sarah Gonzales has the story, listen below...
KIDS LOVE SMARTPHONES, but do phones affect their smarts? We looked into which apps were both educational and fun for little ones. Gizmodo.com tech blogger, John Herrman, suggests these kid-favorites: Wheels on the Bus, Itsy Bitsy Spider (both from Duck Duck Moose), Animal Fun, Curious George's Dictionary, Magic Piano by Smule, Star Walk, and My Very First App.
Contributor Paul Flahive brings us this interview.
This story was originally featured on Show 9: Modern Families and The Digital Age.
Social networking, smart phones, the internet and instant messaging have always been a part of today's kid's world. All this digital distraction can seriously cut into family time - and, it's not only the kids who are guilty of excess "screen time" these days, parents are just as likely to be distracted by phones, games, tvs, computers and gadgets. So on this episode we're exploring the challenges (and the benefits!) of raising a modern family in these high-tech times.
IN-STUDIO GUESTS: Joining KTD Host Shana Sheehy to talk all things high-tech is...
• Anne Collier, the founder and editor of Net Family News, co-director of ConnectSafely.org and the co-chair of the presidential administration's Online Safety & Technology Working Group. Anne is also the co-author of MySpace Unraveled: A Parent's Guide to Teen Social Networking. She joined us by phone from Luxembourg where she was attending the European Commission's Safer Internet Forum.
RESOURCES FROM THIS PROGRAM:
- Education unplugged - While computers are a daily staple in many modern schools, not all institutions are incorporating technology into their curricula. KTD Contributor Jessica Cochran visited the Aurora Waldorf School in Anchorage where education gets unplugged. [Listen]
- Raising 'Techno Addicts' - Local writer and mother of two, Leslie Hsu Oh, shares an original essay on the ups and downs of raising, what she calls, "Techno Addicts". This is her first contribution to her original blog written just for KidsTheseDays.org - Love + eMotion. [Listen]