3, 2, 1, Design!

After revisiting the Universal Design for Learning framework yesterday, and reflecting on my own Lesson Plan 1.0, I utilized a CAST table to organize my thinking moving forward with revisions. In the first part of this assignment for my MAET course, I was asked to create a lesson plan that I will be using next year. I designed my lesson, considering my grades 7/8 context for algebra. After learning about TPACK and UDL, I have been forced to reflect on my original design and make changes.

My TPACK reflection confirmed that I had incorporated all three components. While I am happy that my lesson follows the TPACK framework, I wanted to find a way to incorporate another tool/technology to enhance the learning process.

The UDL chart and reflection then forced me to consider how I can best use the space in my classroom to reach all learners. Some **Flipspiration** from our FlipCon15 visit didn’t hurt either! I was inspired yesterday to reimagine the lesson, thinking further about inquiry and collaboration possibilities in the classroom. In the graphic to the left, UDL is laid out in a way that visually represents the key concepts. First, all things are connected, without edges. Second, that everything works together, rather than there being a direct process from one thing to the next.

This assignment, in theory, has asked us to build a lesson like we might with **Jenga** blocks. There was a clearcut procedure to the building, and when it was complete, it stood tall, and generic.

Now, TPACK and UDL have asked us to remove some of the pieces that weren’t working, or weren’t adding value to the lesson or the learning. In this stage of revision, I am being asked to place new blocks into the holes, to fill the gaps and create a solid foundation. Rather than replacing these blocks with the standard ones, however, I’ve painted them all different colors and glittered them and crafted to the best of my ability. I believe that in this assignment where we have the ability to work so much with one single lesson, there is the great opportunity to truly revise and rework a general lesson and make it unique.

To take this project one step further, I researched **Dyscalculia**, a disability that, simply put, is defined as “a difficulty with mathematics or arithmetic” (Price & Youe, 2000). I chose to look through the lens of a student with Dyscalculia because although it is not a common learning disability, the struggles for students with this disability are the same struggles many other students will face. Students with Dyscalculia struggle with the concept of a number (ideas of quantity, weight, time, operation, numerical classification and problem solving) or in other words, they struggle with quantitative information (Finter, 1979). Since these are things that many struggling math students will also have difficulty with, it is reasonable to think that accommodating Dyscalculia will ultimately improve the teaching overall.

This is a great example of how UDL works seamlessly in planning to teach students will all different abilities and skills. In their study of Dyscalculia, Price and Youe (2000) found that there is no qualitative difference between students with Dyscalculia and poor mathematics students. Since Dyscalculia speaks to a significant difference in IQ score and arithmetic skill, it is not something that is often diagnosed given the difficulty in separating low performing students and students with the inability to think quantitatively (Shalev et al., 2001).

Attached HERE is my revised lesson plan, with UDL and TPACK considered. I found that in my research, the greatest struggle for a student with Dyscalculia is taking the visual or written understanding of a concept, and translating it to quantitative information. Within the framework of the lesson I created, I made revisions that I hope will address this by incorporating a variety of verbal and visual tasks to allow transfer opportunities, as well as recordings of strategies and work, to allow students to revisit the material later on. Reinforcement is something that Dyscalculics, like many other students, need, in order to truly grasp a concept.

**Credit to:**

Price, N., & Youe, S. (2000). The problems of diagnosis and remediation of dyscalculia.* For the Learning of Mathematics, **20*(3), 23-28. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.msu.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/62345042?accountid=12598

Flinter, P. F. (1979). Educational implications of dyscalculia.* Arithmetic Teacher, **26*(7), 42-46. Retrieved from http://za2uf4ps7f.search.serialssolutions.com.proxy2.cl.msu.edu/?ctx_ver=Z39.88-2004&ctx_enc=info:ofi/enc:UTF-8&rfr_id=info:sid/ProQ%3Aericshell&rft_val_fmt=info:ofi/fmt:kev:mtx:journal&rft.genre=article&rft.jtitle=Arithmetic+Teacher&rft.atitle=Educational+Implications+of+Dyscalculia.&rft.au=Flinter%2C+Paul+F.&rft.aulast=Flinter&rft.aufirst=Paul&rft.date=1979-03-01&rft.volume=26&rft.issue=7&rft.spage=42&rft.isbn=&rft.btitle=&rft.title=Arithmetic+Teacher&rft.issn=&rft_id=info:doi/

Shalev, R. S., Manor, O., Kerem, B., Ayali, M., Badichi, N., Friedlander, Y., & Gross-Tsur, V. (2001). Developmental dyscalculia is a familial learning disability.* Journal of Learning Disabilities, **34*(1), 59-65. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.msu.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/62362478?accountid=12598

Image: CC Giulia Forsythe, Universal Design for Learning. Based on: tss.uoguelph.ca/uid

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