Monday, July 27, 2015

Why No Hands?????

You may have noticed that several of the Animated Step-by-Step recipes include a clock animation. You probably have also noticed and possibly wondered why there are no hands on that analog clock?

Although Animated Step-by-Steps are now being used on the iPad (using the Microsoft PowerPoint app), they were originally designed for use on an interactive whiteboard where several colored pen tools were available to embellish the clock providing a ‘teachable moment’ relative to time concepts.

In the Animated recipe, Brownies, for example, we are instructed to ‘Bake the brownie batter in the hot oven for 25 minutes”  The presence of a star at the end of this text indicates the need for an animation … that animation brings in a clock without hands.

If the class is quite young it is sometimes sufficient to just establish the idea that we will be using a clock to mark time while we wait for our brownies to bake. For the class functioning at a somewhat higher level, the Facilitator may wish to reinforce the distinction between the shorter hour hand and the longer minute hand. The interactive whiteboard pen tools can be used to draw in the hour hand and the minute hand. “Heh clocks are suppose to have hands.  Let’s use our blue pen to draw the short hour hand and a red pen to draw the longer minute hand.”

At a more advanced level the hands are drawn to reflect the current time and the colored pen tool is used to count off 25 minutes (using red to reinforce the link between the minute marks and the red minute hand).  “When the minute hand moves to this point (indicated with a black arrow) it will be time to check on our brownies. I need two volunteers to be clock watchers … and just in case let’s set our timer ….. Now we have two ways to be sure we don’t burn our brownies!”

With a still more advanced class, the Facilitator might be marking off the minutes in groups of 5 providing a functional use for skip counting by 5’s.

The previous examples highlight the continuum of ways that a Facilitator might wish to provide some incidental learning re: time concepts when using the Animated Step-by-Step Recipes. None of these steps should encumber the food preparation process.  Rather, given the availability of time, the Facilitator may or may not opt to include a ‘teachable moment’ re: time concepts. 

It is hoped that across recipes, across time, difficult time concepts may just start to make sense for children who experience difficulty learning.

…’til the next post    (follow me .... a new post every Monday!)

© 2015 Carol Goossens', Ph.D.
Augmentative Communication Specialist
Speech-Language Pathologist
Special Educator