[nobe-l] Re Liz's questions

James Fetter jfetter at nd.edu
Mon Aug 22 05:56:36 UTC 2011

I'm also a graduate student and have taught or TA-ed several times. I 
agree with Irina about asking students to announce their names during 
discussion. I've tried various methods of calling on students who don't 
speak often; the most effective seems to be to ask for a comment from 
someone who hasn't spoken before in class or, if all else fails, simply 
calling on a student who never says anything. The difficulty, of course, 
is that the student may have nothing intelligent to say or may not be 
paying attention, which disrupts the flow of the discussion. I haven't 
made much use of PowerPoint, because I have thus far taught smaller 
classes or discussion sections. I do, however, use a Braille display (an 
Alva BC640) for reading off lecture notes, consulting the text being 
analyzed, etc, and it seems to work fine with standard office 
applications. I hope this helps.
All Best,

On 8/22/2011 12:49 AM, Irina Anisimova wrote:
> Hi Liz,
> My name is Irina and I am also a graduate student at the department of
> Slavic Languages and Literatures at Pitt.
> I agree with Cayte that it will help to ask students to tell you their
> names, when they make a comment during the discussion I tried it in my
> classes, and although I always had to remind them, I remembered their
> voices very quickly.  I also think that if you have more then 50
> students in your class, you would never be able to remember everyone,
> but at least you will know the active students.
> I will also suggest combination of handouts and projecting from a
> computer to the screen.  Power Point is fine to use with JAWS.  I use
> office t003, because I generally find it easier.  May be somebody else
> could comment on using newer versions of PPT.  You can also project
> Word documents onto a screen. Or even type in Word if you want to make
> a quick reference.  I used to do that in my language classes.
> I also have a question for the list concerning using the braille
> display for teaching.  I currently use JAWS and have a headphone in
> one ear, but find it at times annoying, especially when I want to show
> a clip from my computer and JAWS continues speaking for a while.  Does
> anyone on the list use brail display for teaching?  Does it work well
> with PPT and other programs?  I am considering buying it at some
> point.
> Regards,
> Irina
> On 8/20/11, Cayte Mendez<katz4god at yahoo.com>  wrote:
>> Hi Liz,
>> My name is Cayte.  I’m an elementary school teacher in NYC.  Welcome to the
>> list!
>> When I first started teaching I had a really hard time learning my students’
>> names.  One thing you might try is having students call out their names to
>> you when they have a question or comment.  As the semester progresses you’ll
>> probably learn to associate voices with the different names, so when they
>> come see you before or after class you’ll have a reference.  Also, I took a
>> few classes in college where we had assigned seats.  It’s a little more
>> formal than the usual set-up, but that way you can have an idea of who’s
>> talking by where they’re sitting in the room.
>> Presenting class materials without the board is a little tricky.  Do your
>> colleagues use PowerPoint or is it ok to use handouts?  I have some residual
>> vision, so I don’t know how accessible PowerPoint is, but maybe someone else
>> on the list knows?
>> Again, welcome to the list and I hope we can be a helpful resource for you
>> in the future.
>> A book is a garden carried in the pocket.
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