Today's guest post comes from two very talented girls, Katie Nawrot and Megan Spencer, who are going to Illinois State University for their degree in Special Education. They go by "Two Broke AT Girls" and they make short youtube (TwoBrokeATGirls) videos in which they demonstrate DIY AT solutions that can be achieved at home with minimal to no cost!
Hey everyone! Two Broke AT Girls here. We’re here to share some insights to our videos. (Still surprised that more than just our mothers are watching. Shout out to Lyn and Judy.) The inspiration behind our video series was brought on by a project we had to do for our assistive technology class at Illinois State University this semester. (Shout out to Dr. Brian Wojcik!) We were assigned to create a Personal Learning Network (PLN) and develop a collaborative knowledge product that we could give back to other educators. Through our PLN, we were able to gain information on assistive technology from other educators through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blogs, and other education sites. We decided to use this information to team up and find some cheap, easy do-it-yourself technology that everyday teachers can use. We chose to do videos because we found that we live in a very visual culture. From our previous learning experiences, we found ourselves watching more videos or looking at tweets, than turning the pages of our textbooks. We thought a video would be professional, fun, and educational. We were both very enthusiastic about the subject of DIY AT (why are there so many acronyms in Special Education?) and wanted to portray this through our videos. Since we are in college, and don’t have much money to spare, our goal was to find AT devices that we could make for under $10.
To give you some background knowledge on our personalities, we have been friends for 11 years (seems like 10 years too long) which makes it really easy for us to be comfortable and have fun together. If you could not already tell, we enjoy making jokes at one another’s expense. (Imagine living in the same apartment as us.) We decided on the name Two Broke AT Girls when we were walking back from class trying to brainstorm names for the video series. Of course, like always, we found ourselves trying to top the other with a clever name. Katie, like always, the victorious one. (Can you tell who’s writing this yet?)
Our first video focused on pencil grips because we found that this is one area of need for many students. A simple tool such as a pencil grip can transform the way a student writes.
On the second video, because we did not have any fancy devices around, we decided to use our 1999 Panasonic remote control to our SUPER BIG FLAT SCREEN T.V. (Just kidding, I wish). We used shrink-wrap to display ways that a professional can create a moisture guard to protect from spills, drool, or anything that may harm an expensive device.
The third do it yourself video was for a pen stylus that can be used for the newest craze of the IPad. Which, we are very proud non-owners of. This was our favorite, easiest, and cheapest AT tool to create.
Thanks for watching and stay tuned for the next episode!!!
-Katie and Megan