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Teachers' Learning Object Repository

Introduction to Learning Objects (LOs) in Agricultural Education

Students with Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD) in the United States have increased dramatically in recent years, from 0.75 million in 1976 to 2.57 million in 2008 (Biddle, 2006; Swanson, 1999; US Department of Education, 2009). This trend indicates a growing need for innovative approaches in the improvement of teaching and learning for secondary learning disabled students.

Given the high percentage of learning disabled students aspiring to post-secondary vocational training and/or a college education (U.S. Department of Education, 2004), it is imperative that curriculum re-design for the learning disabled student in agricultural education and other CTE programs be developed and implemented. With nearly one fourth of our agricultural education students possessing special needs (Pense, 2007), we risk losing that amount of our future workforce in the agriculture industry.

This revision of Illinois Core lessons in Horticulture is offered as a possible format to be used in revising lessons in all of the agricultural education subjects.  To address the broadest spectrum of learning disabilities, the linked lessons here have employed voice over, an increased number of visuals, special English, and scaffolding of Learning Objectives.

These Learning Objectives (LO) have been shown to increase student learning and retention for both SLD students and the traditional student (Pense, Watson, & Wakefield, 2010).  Feel free to use them in conjunction with your current curriculum.  Should you develop new LOs using this format, we invite you to send them in for inclusion in this repository so many other colleagues can make use of them in their programs.  Send newly developed LOs as attachments to:  sebpense@siu.edu

Teachers' Learning Objects