Family Friendly Tech and Advocacy: Tech Psychologist's Guide by Dr. Jeanne Beckman

Family Friendly Tech and Advocacy: Tech Psychologist's Guide   by Dr. Jeanne Beckman
Finally, a book to help families find the right technology to accommodate reading disorders (dyslexia) and other disabilties! ISBN 978-1-60264-089-4

How to purchase my book

To purchase through Virtual Bookworm (my publisher) you can click Virtual Bookworm Publisher: Tech Psychologist's Guide or
Amazon no longer allows Illinois professionals to get credit for referrals to Amazon due to a sales tax dispute. I will be referring to Powell's in the near future.

What is that TinyURL notation that you see in my blog? For those who use a screen reader, the link that is hidden behind words like Tech Psychologist Guide remains hidden. However, screen readers can read aloud the website address, or URL, if it was produced by Also, sometimes these addresses are so long that they wrap around several lines or overlap into colored areas of a website that obscure the actual address. Intrigued? You can create your own tinyurl's at

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Introducing the DIMS Approach™: A strategy for success


The DIMS Approach™ is a key focus in my book, Tech Psychologist's Guide to Technology and Access Tools. Here, as in my book, you'll find solutions, tips, and news items related to finding assistive technology, which I call access tools. I welcome your feedback and invite you to share your technology tips and ideas.

Dr. Jeanne Beckman

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Self-contained versus resource classes

When is it resource support, and when is it segregation?

While most parents and some schools understand that students with special education needs should receive remedial help, or remediation, the question of how these services should be provided often creates a rift between school and home.

If the class specifically targets an individual's area of weakness, such as reading decoding or fluency, with a research-validated intervention, and the student participates in the mainstream class, then it is resource remediation. However, if the student is in a self-contained language arts classroom in lieu of the mainstream language arts classroom, then it is segregation. According to the 1954 Supreme Court Ruling, Brown v Board of Education, "separate but equal" is not equal and is against the law of the land.

Students should be supported in their mainstream classes with appropriate accommodations in order to have full access to their regular curriculum.

Do your child's educational services and supports provide an equal opportunity to learn and grow with his or her peers?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Technology for those with ALS

Most people have become familiar with computers, with email, and cell phones. However, for the disabled community, technology is their lifeline. Speaking when one's voice is silent, staying connected via email with others when fingers cannot type on the keyboard, remaining independent with tasks such as electronic grocery shopping, and remaining in charge of their medical decision-making by online researching of medical practices are just a few of the ways in which those with ALS can remain connected and functional. Here's a video of Marie-France who has Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS):

Does it make sense?
Some schools still persist in the belief that students with disabilities should learn the regular way first, denying students their legal rights to access to their mainstream curricula. Instead of denying access to accommodations and access tools, schools should be asking what they can do to support every student's strengths in independent learning.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Reducing exercise, reducing memory?

Does it make sense?

In the era of NCLB (No Child Left Behind) requiring continual testing of our children in school, children have little time left for recess and other physical activity. Homework quantities have increased to the point of eliminating any free time to run and play outside once children arrive home after school. The New York Times reported that an increasing body of research points to the dangers of lost opportunities to exercise: those who exercise "... can improve the performance of the brain by boosting memory and cognitive processing speed." Read the full article at

Pay It Forward

Today The Chicago Tribune magazine published a list of people who are making a difference in small but significant ways. "The Power of One," August 19, 2007

..... a common theme in my book is the spirit of Hyde's book, Pay it Forward, where a single kind act creates a ripple effect, spreading ever widening circles of change in our world.

Today, I'm pleased to see her concept is listed as #8 in the Tribune's Top 20 list of ways to build a brighter tomorrow.

The story includes a link to Hyde's web site:

Are you paying it forward to help a child access his/her education?