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Empower Your Special Needs Learners
Empower yourself and your students with this eclectic list of curated resources especially for special needs students. Find tools to simplify and summarize reading, to help ADHD students remain focused, and to educate yourself about various special education topics.
Do you share videos in class on a projector or individual devices? Use Quietube to remove all the clutter and "stuff" from YouTube, Vimeo, and Viddler videos. This is a huge help to students who may get distracted by ads instead of viewing the video.
This curated list focuses on information and tools to educate yourself and teach your students on the Autism Spectrum. Read each review to find a complete description and classroom use ideas, when applicable. Educate yourself with this information.
MobyMax is a great tool to reach both your struggling learners and most advanced students. Students can take pretests to find their personalized levels in various subject areas: Math, Vocabulary, Science, Test Prep, Early Writing, and more. Check it out!
Hit a Home Run with this Fantastic Four!
This list highlights four fantastic tools for the main areas of Language Arts: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. Our tool picks below are especially helpful for working with special needs learners.
Before students (of all levels) turn in their final writing draft, have them paste their work into Expresso to analyze their writing. View data on the number of weak verbs and frequently used words in the writing, readability statistics, and more.
Ideal for ESL/ELL, students with speech needs, or even struggling readers, the Text to Speech Reader allows all to have a voice! Simply drag, upload, or paste text files to convert the text to speech instantly. Choose the voice and the speed of reading.
Perfect for your auditory learners, Listenwise offers podcasts and radio broadcasts (each approximately 10 minutes or less). You have the ability to assign stories to students and check comprehension using the questions provided at the end of each story.
Copy and paste text, PDF's, websites, or online articles into the text box. Summarize the longer texts (quickly) for learning support students. Choose up to 7 sentences for your summary. Learn more ideas about SMMRY in our blog post shared below.
Reading Resources for All Ability Levels
Reading matters for all levels of learners. Peruse this collection to find tools for emergent readers, gifted learners, reluctant readers, and more. Most of these tools can be used with your entire class and differentiated for any special needs.
Hook your most reluctant readers with Wordisode. The site brings daily reading to your inbox through short (approximately 5-minute) episodes of original stories. The stories use cliffhangers to motivate readers to watch the next episode.
Find an extensive library of free animated books, songs, poems, and learning activities for emerging readers. Words are highlighted as the narrator reads. Use these stories to reinforce skills with ESL/ELL and learning support students.
Begin by typing or pasting your text in the provided box (up to 1500 characters, or unlimited with FREE registration). Choose the desired reading level, then click submit. Generated vocabulary lists are provided at the reading level and above.
Find relevant and readable digital content for older students unable to read above the elementary level. Registration is not necessary, but does allow you to add books and place bookmarks. Use to differentiate for struggling readers.
Take an article and differentiate it into 3 different levels. All students read the same content, but at a level they can understand. Find current events, sports, comedy, and more. Find videos, practice exercises, and comprehension questions.
Learn and Lead with TeachersFirst
What percentage of your students are diagnosed with ADHD? Tell us in our weekly poll. Our latest Tech Tool of the Month blog post highlights SMMRY implementation ideas. And our free virtual workshop this Tuesday at 7pm (Eastern) will show you how to transform your lesson plans with SAMR and TeachersFirst.
Learn more about this fabulous find
Share SMMRY with your students! Read this blog post to learn more about the tool, how to use it, and ways to incorporate it into your lessons. Discover uses, beyond summarizing text. Get your students started today!
Read our post »
What percentage of your students have ADHD? October is ADHD Awareness Month. This is a good time to reflect on how ADHD has evolved over the past decades. What has helped the ADHD students in your class to remain focused?
Share your ADHD experience here »
Find more ideas on Tuesday at 7pm!
Learn new ways to infuse your lessons with SAMR, and TeachersFirst! Join our hands-on virtual workshop on Tuesday at 7pm Eastern. Our sessions are FREE and offer PDU credit. Invest time in your professional learning this week!
Get SAMR ideas here »
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TeachersFirst is a collection of curated, classroom-ready content and ideas — including teacher-authored reviews of thousands of web resources. Built-in guidance from seasoned professionals makes effective classroom technology use trouble-free. TeachersFirst is made available free to K12 teachers by The Source for Learning, Inc., a nonprofit that has been providing educational resources for more than 40 years.