Summarized by Cindy Perras, M.Ed., OCT
Educational Consultant, LDAO
EduGAINS is an Ontario Ministry of Education website which provides Ministry developed resources to support policies and programs related to improved learning and teaching, for grades K – 12; the target audience for these resources is Ontario educators. In addition to the Ministry developed resources, the website has Ministry licensed resources and related links. Click here to open the EduGAINS website.
Ministry Developed Resources
The Ministry developed resources cover a variety of areas (specific links below) and each area is differentiated according to educational role, including educator, school leader, system leader and professional learning facilitator. Resources include videos, curriculum support documents (in PDF), PowerPoint presentations, links to web pages, FAQ (frequently asked questions), webcasts, and professional learning materials.
Some of the Ministry developed resources will be of particular interest for educators teaching students with learning disabilities (LDs). 21st Century Learning provides a conceptual and research-based framework for all K – 12 educators, as to why Ontario is involved in “next generation” learning. For students with LDs, there is a focus on strengthening the evidence-base regarding the role of tablet/mobile technologies and technology-enabled differentiated instruction and assessment.
Below is a partial listing of specific resources available on the site.
21st Century Learning:
- Click here to open 21st Century Teaching and Learning - Quick Facts Winter 2014
- Click here to open 21st Century Teaching and Learning - What Research Tells Us Volume I
English Language Learners:
- Resources for K-8 include resource guides, webcasts and monographs
- Click here to open Supporting English Language Learners in Kindergarten - A Practical Guide for Ontario Educators
- Click here to open Supporting English Language Learners - A Practical Guide for Ontario Educators Grades 1 - 8
- Resources for grades K-6 have not yet been posted
- Click here to open the link on Literacy
- Resources for grades 7-12 include subject specific learning materials, professional learning resources/guides (PDF), including a monograph on use of text-to-speech technology for reading difficulties/reading disabilities, Click here to open the link to The Voice of Text-to-Speech Technology
- Resources for K-12 including defining assessment, assessment and instruction, implementing assessment, student voices, FAQ, in various formats – web pages, eModules, PDF, and videos
- Click here to open the link to Assessment Reporting
- Elementary, secondary and subject specific resources
- Click here to open the link to Financial Literacy
- Curriculum and teaching resources are differentiated by grades and levels – K-3, 4-6, 7-8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and ELL
- Classroom practices section focuses on differentiated instruction and technology & teaching tools, both of which have relevance for teaching students with LDs
- Click here to open the link to Mathematics
- Ministry of Education curricula and resource documents, at the elementary and secondary levels
- Click here to open the link to Curriculum
- The International Languages Elementary Program provides ongoing learning and development of international languages by students who possess diverse cultural backgrounds. The ILP is for all languages other than English and French, for students in K-8.
- Click here to open the International Languages Elementary Program Guide in PDF
- As differentiating instruction (DI) is both a research-based and evidence-based strategy for teaching students with LDs, this section provides a wealth of resources, in both English and French
- Resources include brochures, educator guides (PDF), DI videos, templates (Word), self-guided DI modules (PPT)
- Click here to open the Reach Every Student Through Differentiated Instruction brochure in PDF
- Resource documents (PDF) and web pages for Kindergarten teachers
- Click here to open the link to Kindergarten resources
- Click here to open the Students as Researchers Toolkit in PDF
- Various other resources looking at the roles of students as leaders (e.g. SpeakUp projects) and students as advisors
Ministry Licensed Resources
Students in grades 8-12 will use ArcGIS Online to improve their analytical skills and integrate different types of information into geographical systems coherent with the Ontario curriculum. ArcGIS Online is an easy way for students to use geographic information on the web to construct and share their own maps or search for other works that have been published.
Math Strategies Primary – a computer software program that is appropriate for Kindergarten to Grade 3 students in order to explore various mathematical principles, including Number Sense and Numeration, and Patterning and Algebra.
TinkerPlots - a data analysis software that provides students with the ability to manipulate sets of data into colourful graphs and other forms of representations, while improving their understanding of data, numbers, probability, and graphs.
Frames 5 - educational software that is intended for students in grades 1 to 8. The software promotes student creativity, encourages them to engage in problem solving, and in the curriculum and helps them to develop 21st century skills by providing them with an opportunity to create various video projects, such as, stop-motion animation, Claymation, and digital storytelling.
Comic Life 2 - an application for creating comics, annotated images, dynamic photo albums, greeting cards, scrapbooks, storybooks, instruction guides and brochures. The software can be used for grades 1 to 12 in many different subject areas such as Language, History, Mathematics, Science, and any other area in which students would need to demonstrate their understanding.
WordQ - an assistive piece of software that integrates speech recognition, text-to-speech, and word prediction together to enable writers to become more confident in their writing and to write on their own. The simplicity in its interface makes it very easy to learn to use and of great benefit for students with learning disabilities.
BookFlix - an online literacy resource designed for students grades in Kindergarten to 3. Students will develop a love of reading by interacting through read along options, video storybooks, educational games and can read material that is of interest to them as BookFlix offers 9 categories of books: Animals and Nature, Earth and Sky, People and Places, Music and Rhyme, Family and Community, ABCs and 123s, as well as Adventure, Celebrations and Imagination.
Software for Students with LDs - click on each link for a full description of the program, how the program supports the learning of students with LDs, and curriculum connections, by subject and grade level:
- Click here to open Clicker 6
- Click here to open Dragon Dictate for Macintosh
- Click here to open Dragon Naturally Speaking 11 Professional
- Click here to open SMART Ideas 5.0
- Click here to open WordQ
- The OSAPAC Resources Grid is a software grid, ordered by subject area and grade which includes special education software for students with learning disabilities from K-12, Click here to open the OSAPAC Resources Grid
Click here to open the Ontario Educational Resource Bank – this Ministry of Education e-Learning resource is available to teachers, students, and parents of students in District School boards. The Ontario Educational Resource Bank is password protected and interested users must contact their local school board for information about using these resources. Resources may be searched by grade, subject/course, strand, overall expectations, and/or keywords.
Click here to open the OSAPAC (Ontario Software Acquisition Program Advisory Committee) link– OSAPAC is the committee that advises the Ministry on software titles to negotiate for provincial licensing. The website provides a databank of licensed software/curriculum/resources available to school districts; additionally, the databank identifies software that is assistive in nature. Note: click here to access the website for French software: Click here to access the French software website - CCPALO.