Michael VanDoren


Go to: ETAP 623 Spring 2020 (Zhang) | Michael's Mini-Course

About Me

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A short Biography

- I hold a bachelors in adolescent education from SUNY Oswego

- I am currently enrolled in the CDIT program at SUNY Albany

- Four years of substitute teaching at four different districts

- Two years of full year/long-term social studies placements in the middle school setting

- Three years of teaching summer school

  In the few short years that I have been teaching I have amassed experience from multiple districts, multiple grade levels, and multiple subjects. This has afforded me the opportunity to work with students from many walks of life, and of differing levels of ability. My network of colleagues is vast for someone that has been in the field for such a short time, and they are a great source of content, wisdom, and experience. Though the role of being a teacher in today's education system can be very demanding and challenging, I know that this is the role I was meant to play. 
  Outside of the professional world I am a the lucky son to two proud parents, a supportive brother, and loving uncle to two nephews and a niece. I coach soccer in my hometown recreation program and am a fan of anything that goes fast, or gets my adrenaline pumping!

My Topic and Purpose

In this course we will explore the reasons for and uses of multiple modalities in lesson design. By the end we will be able to identify the different types of modalities, how to best incorporate them into your lesson design, and identify which types of learners respond positively or negatively to which modes of instruction. Through the acquisition of these three goals you should be better equipped to foster motivation and understanding of your content among your students.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this mini course, learners will be able to:

  • Identify the three different modalities of learning
  • Designate which modality category (or categories) students fall in
  • Incorporate multiple modalities into lesson design

Needs Assessment

1) Identify Stakeholders

(A) Directly Involved: classroom teachers, special education teachers, teaching assistants

(B) Indirectly Involved: school administrators, school districts

(C) Directly Impacted: students

(D) Indirectly Impacted: parents

1.2) Establish Expectations

Inform and instruct learners (AB)

Encourage Collaboration (ABC)

Improve Performance (ABCD)

Transfer learning to new and outside activities (C)

Performance Support (AC)

2) Identify Roles and Responsibilities

Project Initiator/Subject Matter Expert/Instructional Designer: I will determine the scope and goals of the mini-course. I shall direct the learner towards alterations of existing lessons to include proper use and identification of learning modalities, as well as how to apply them to target students and the lesson design as a whole.

Client: The teachers and other educational professionals who partake in the mini-course play the role of learner, but have no responsibility to use the information provided.

3) Identify Problems, Causes, Needs, and Solutions

Problems: Students are expected to have a deeper understanding of content material in order to think critically, deeply analyze, and directly problem solve in the 21st century world. To this end teachers need to be able to reach students in a more purposeful and engaging way.

Desired Goals: Teachers can properly identify and implement different learning modalities in their lesson design and classrooms. Students will benefit by engaging in content in a more meaningful and authentic way.

Solutions: Teachers will be better equipped and prepared to design lessons that engage students in a more meaningful way for them. Teachers, administrators and school districts will see students grades and state assessments increase.

4) What Are the Needs, Resources, and Constraints

Needs: Participants of this mini-course will need to be open minded about learning new teaching strategies, altering lesson goals, and changing teaching practices.

Resources: Learners will have to access the mini-course through the internet. To properly cover all modalities and learners, teachers have to learn to access different technologies for visual and auditory learners, props and materials for tactile learners, and materials to set up stations (or other interactive lesson designs) for kinesthetic learners.The ability to set up, schedule, ad partake in field tips are another great wa to engage kinesthetic learners.

Constraints: The teacher's ability to engage and learn new technologies can be challenged by this approach. Budget constraints can also be a factor in implementing multiple modalities into lesson design.

4) Goal Statement: Our students learn in different ways. You will be able to identify the different types of learning modalities, how to incorporate them into lesson design, and properly execute them in the classroom setting.

5) Summarize Needs Analysis: In the 21st century, memorization and repetitive based instruction do not properly instill the skills our students need to be successful. They need a real understanding of the content we teach to achieve the ability to critically think, deeply analyze, and problem solve. Implementing a strategy of multiple modalities into lesson design will engage students in a deeper and more authentic way, resulting in the aforementioned abilities.

Analysis of the Learner and Context

1) Identity of Target Learners: Classroom teachers, special education teachers, and teaching assistants located in grades K through 12, teaching in districts of varying size and economic backgrounds.

2) Determine Information Required: Age of teachers

Technology proficiency of teacher

Academic background and experience of teachers

Diversity of target audience

Employment status and district directives of target learners

3) Learner Profile: Participants of this mini-course will be educational professionals looking to augment their current teaching practices and better engage their students in content understanding.

4) Design Impact on Learners: As the participants of this mini-course are educational professionals of different subject matters and grade levels, the design language should try to remain neutral while the examples provided should be relevant to multiple content areas. The accessibility and navigation of the course should be straightforward and informative, as to keep the attention of the educational professional.

Performance-Based Objectives

Participants of this mini-course:

(1) Can identify the four different types of learning modalities

(2) Can evaluate the benefits and detractors of each learning modality

(3) Can apply the above knowledge to evaluate which modality(ies) best suite the learning needs of their students

(4) Can create authentic leaning activities and environments tailored to their student's individual strengths, as well as to those of the class as a whole

Curriculum Map


References and Resources