Monday, June 25, 2007

Apple Technology for Diverse Learners

Here at NECC in the Exhibit Hall at the "Apple Interactive Classroom" in a session called "Apple Technology for Diverse Learners." Macintosh computers (like Windows computers) come with a variety of tools to support diverse learners, and this session provides an overview of those tools. One of the presenters works at the Chartwell School for dyslexic learners.

(Update: added the URL for the presentation as link to title of this post.)

The key phrase here is "built-in tools on the Mac," which, I suppose, is intended to stress that Mac's come with things that don't have to be purchased separately and to justify their additional cost when compared to Windows computers. These tools include iCal (when assignments are due), Dashboard (countdown timers to due dates), note-taking templates in TextEdit, and Smart Folders (virtual folders containing shortcuts to particular files and created in Finder) and Spotlight (another tool, used to find documents that may have been lost, accessible from a magnifying glass on the upper right of the Mac OS X window). These functions could be done using Outlook on a Windows machine, but of course Outlook (the full version) is an extra cost. (I wonder whether Outlook Express could be used to do these same things.)

The presenter has this phrase "Let's not do that anymore...." which is used to transition from the "old" way to do things to a "new" way to do it.

I'm distracted by the MacBook that i'm using: VERY sleek, black, comfortable, a nice piece of equipment. Apple certainly has learned about the "value" of creating a slick product.

Additional tools are the built-in dictionary with text-to-speech to get "correct" pronunciations, and a translator widget on the dashboard.

1 comment:

Kassie said...

Craig- Sounds like you might need to go Mac. I love mine, and as you may or may not know Healy is a Mac school and we make a point to teach students how to use all of the Apple integrated applications as they integrate teachnology into their everyday work. Of course this only works while at school, but my goal is to actually get them to use the computers at school, in their classrooms, for more than just games.

Continue blogging... I enjoy reading your posts.