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Great Educational Tools for Special Education Teachers

Great Educational Tools for Special Education Teachers

The potential of students with special needs is often underestimated. However, special education teachers know that these students have exceptional talents, even though it takes a greater effort and a greater number of tools and resources that will bring the lectures closer to them.

Contemporary teaching methods are inseparable with technology tools. When teachers choose the right tools, they will find an easier way of approaching students with special needs. The following resources are definitely worth trying out.

1. TutorsClass

Students with special needs can use tutoring lessons more than anyone, but it’s extremely difficult to find tutors with the right approach when searching locally. As an online tutoring platform, TutorsClass can help every student find the right tutor for their needs.

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This online environment provides numerous benefits for students with special needs, mainly by making them more focused on the learning process. Special education teachers can also find this platform very useful, because they can expand their reach and start providing lessons to more students under their own schedule.

2. Do2Learn

This is one of the best projects aimed at students with special needs. Do2Learn makes them more interested in learning by combining the educational process with games, seasonal arts, craft projects, songs, and many more fun activities. This concept helps teachers to improve the social skills, behavior, and academic achievements of students with special needs.

Do2Learn offers a teacher toolbox, plans for behavior management, literacy tools, and many other materials that enhance the productivity of the teachers and their students. It’s not easy to get access to material created by experts in the niche of special education, which is what makes this website so valuable.

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3. Help.PlagTracker.com

Students with special needs can find grammar and syntax rules too overwhelming, but they are still expected to advance their writing skills. PlagTracker offers professional writing and editing assistance that can make their work much better. One can learn most efficiently through their own mistakes, which makes the corrections provided by the professional team at this website extremely valuable for the education of students with special needs.

Teachers can also turn to the professional editing assistance provided by this website when they want to present flawless textbooks, lessons, and projects to students with special needs.

4. Brainly.com

Brainly.com is a social learning network. It takes what’s best in the traditional, offline collaboration between students, and brings it to an online space. This way, students from different locations and background are able to freely cooperate and study together. After this model proved very successful in European and South American countries, Brainly launched new language versions, including an English one—Brainly.com. Now American, British and all other English speaking students and education enthusiasts may benefit from the exchange of knowledge and skills with the use of social learning.

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5. Writinghouse

Special education teachers have to customize the lesson plans according to the capacity and productivity of their students. This means that they have to produce many pieces of academic content, and all of them need to be properly referenced.

With the help of Writinghouse, teachers can forget about all distracting referencing standards, because this free citation generator applies them automatically.

6. National Center for Learning Disabilities

The NCLD website offers great resources that enable special education teachers to keep their students interested in the lessons. Every teacher has to understand these students before being able to teach them something, and that is exactly what this website is focused on.

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The NCLD offers valuable tips that can help teachers improve their relationships not only with the students, but with their parents as well. Teachers can also find advice on how to use assistive technology that will make their jobs easier.

7. Social Media

Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are tools every teacher should use. A special education teacher can join a large community of educators specialized in this niche, which can help them learn through relevant discussions and information. Making a contribution is always important in this community, and social media websites enable all special education teachers to collaborate and contribute towards the development of new teaching methods.

Teaching methods can be greatly enhanced with the right choice of educational tools.

No special education teacher can achieve great results without being aware of the contemporary teaching methods that combine the use of technology with the educational process. The concepts of this technology are constantly being reinvented, which provides teachers with unlimited options to improve the productivity of their students.

The resources we listed above will help you start exploring the innovations and improve your impact as a teacher to students with special needs.

Featured photo credit: ⤢ × × Jackie J. Schultz. Many Students, One Teacher via flickr.com

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Melissa Burns

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Published on July 17, 2018

How Productive People Compartmentalize Time to Get the Most Done

How Productive People Compartmentalize Time to Get the Most Done

I’ve never believed people are born productive or organized. Being organized and productive is a choice.

You choose to keep your stuff organized or you don’t. You choose to get on with your work and ignore distractions or you don’t.

But one skill very productive people appear to have that is not a choice is the ability to compartmentalize. And that takes skill and practice.

What is compartmentalization

To compartmentalize means you have the ability to shut out all distractions and other work except for the work in front of you. Nothing gets past your barriers.

In psychology, compartmentalization is a defence mechanism our brains use to shut out traumatic events. We close down all thoughts about the traumatic event. This can lead to serious mental-health problems such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) if not dealt with properly.

However, compartmentalization can be used in positive ways to help us become more productive and allow us to focus on the things that are important to us.

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Robin Sharma, the renowned leadership coach, calls it his Tight Bubble of Total Focus Strategy. This is where he shuts out all distractions, turns off his phone and goes to a quiet place where no one will disturb him and does the work he wants to focus on. He allows nothing to come between himself and the work he is working on and prides himself on being almost uncontactable.

Others call it deep work. When I want to focus on a specific piece of work, I turn everything off, turn on my favourite music podcast The Anjunadeep Edition (soft, eclectic electronic music) and focus on the content I intend to work on. It works, and it allows me to get massive amounts of content produced every week.

The main point about compartmentalization is that no matter what else is going on in your life — you could be going through a difficult time in your relationships, your business could be sinking into bankruptcy or you just had a fight with your colleague; you can shut those things out of your mind and focus totally on the work that needs doing.

Your mind sees things as separate rooms with closable doors, so you can enter a mental room, close the door and have complete focus on whatever it is you want to focus on. Your mind does not wander.

Being able to achieve this state can seriously boost your productivity. You get a lot more quality work done and you find you have a lot more time to do the things you want to do. It is a skill worth mastering for the benefits it will bring you.

How to develop the skill of compartmentalization

The simplest way to develop this skill is to use your calendar.

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Your calendar is the most powerful tool you have in your productivity toolbox. It allows you to block time out, and it can focus you on the work that needs doing.

My calendar allows me to block time out so I can remove everything else out of my mind to focus on one thing. When I have scheduled time for writing, I know what I want to write about and I sit down and my mind completely focuses on the writing.

Nothing comes between me, my thoughts and the keyboard. I am in my writing compartment and that is where I want to be. Anything going on around me, such as a problem with a student, a difficulty with an area of my business or an argument with my wife is blocked out.

Understand that sometimes there’s nothing you can do about an issue

One of the ways to do this is to understand there are times when there is nothing you can do about an issue or an area of your life. For example, if I have a student with a problem, unless I am able to communicate with that student at that specific time, there is nothing I can do about it.

If I can help the student, I would schedule a meeting with the student to help them. But between now and the scheduled meeting there is nothing I can do. So, I block it out.

The meeting is scheduled on my calendar and I will be there. Until then, there is nothing I can do about it.

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Ask yourself the question “Is there anything I can do about it right now?”

This is a very powerful way to help you compartmentalize these issues.

If there is, focus all your attention on it to the exclusion of everything else until you have a workable solution. If not, then block it out, schedule time when you can do something about it and move on to the next piece of work you need to work on.

Being able to compartmentalize helps with productivity in another way. It reduces the amount of time you spend worrying.

Worrying about something is a huge waste of energy that never solves anything. Being able to block out issues you cannot deal with stops you from worrying about things and allows you to focus on the things you can do something about.

Reframe the problem as a question

Reframing the problem as a question such as “what do I have to do to solve this problem?” takes your mind away from a worried state into a solution state, where you begin searching for solutions.

One of the reasons David Allen’s Getting Things Done book has endured is because it focuses on contexts. This is a form of compartmentalization where you only do work you can work on.

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For instance, if a piece of work needs a computer, you would only look at the work when you were in front of a computer. If you were driving, you cannot do that work, so you would not be looking at it.

Choose one thing to focus on

To get better at compartmentalizing, look around your environment and seek out places where you can do specific types of work.

Taking your dog for a walk could be the time you focus solely on solving project problems, commuting to and from work could be the time you spend reading and developing your skills and the time between 10 am and 12 pm could be the time you spend on the phone sorting out client issues.

Once you make the decision about when and where you will do the different types of work, make it stick. Schedule it. Once it becomes a habit, you are well on your way to using the power of compartmentalization to become more productive.

Comparmentalization saves you stress

Compartmentalization is a skill that gives you time to deal with issues and work to the exclusion of all other distractions.

This means you get more work done in less time and this allows you to spend more time with the people you want to spend more time with, doing the things you want to spend more time doing.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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