STEM talkABLE (2)

 In this episode, Dr. Wadors Verne and Dr. Amsbary discuss what computational thinking looks like for young children with and without disabilities. They describe the application and the aid of computational thinking on the foundation of repetition, looping, causation, debugging, and algorithms. They review how these components of computational thinking enact in our daily lives, from setting up the meal tables, washing hands, to playtime with blocks, incorporating actions and words, and how some of the foundational tactics can be applied to children with different intellectual, motor, and interest levels.

Lisa Wadors Verne's headshot

Dr. Lisa Wadors Verne

Jessica Amsbary's headshot

Dr. Jessica Amsbary

About the authors:

Lisa Wadors Verne, Ph.D. is Director, Education Research and Development at Benetech, serves as the Project Director for the DIAGRAM Center and is co-producer of the DIAGRAM Report. Lisa has spoken about accessible educational materials and inclusive practices at many notable conferences around the globe. She has a doctorate in Special Education and Policy from the University of California, Berkeley and San Francisco State University, Joint Doctoral program with a focus on teachers’ beliefs about including children with special needs in typically developing classrooms. With nearly two decades in Educational research and application, Dr. Wadors Verne has particular expertise in special education policy and law, inclusion, and family and school collaboration. Dr. Wadors Verne holds a B.S. in Business Administration and Marketing from Villanova University and an M. A. in Early Childhood Special Education from Santa Clara University.

Jessica Amsbary, PhD is a Technical Assistance Specialist at FPG Child Development Institute and Program Coordinator for the Master in Education for Experienced Teachers in Early Childhood Intervention and Family Support at the School of Education at UNC Chapel Hill. Her research interests involve the development and implementation of effective and inclusive early intervention resources and support for young children with disabilities and their families. She has a doctorate in Applied Developmental Sciences and Special Education from UNC Chapel Hill, a M.S. in Early Childhood Development with a specialization in infancy from Erikson Institute, and a B.A. degree in Psychology from the University of Notre Dame.

 

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STEM talkable logo

We are excited to launch STEM talkABLE, a platform that individuals with disabilities and their families, peers, colleagues, teachers can share their stories and STEM learning journey.

In this first episode of STEM talkABLE podcast, Lily and Robyn share their stories and struggles in STEM learning. Robyn shares her fears of Lily failing, while Lily shares how she doesn't want to be treated differently because of her disability. 

Listen to Robyn and Lily's conversation:

 

Lily and Robyn's selfie

Lily Wells (Left), 14, and her mother, Robyn DiPietro-Wells (Right), live in Illinois.  Lily enjoys reading, writing, and hanging out with friends.  She will be a high school freshman in the fall of 2020.  Robyn works as a program coordinator for a grant project in the Special Education department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  They both have a strong sense of advocacy and endeavor to support others in developing similar skills to serve not only oneself, but also those with whom they interact in personal and professional settings.

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