Prepositions (Instructional piece of Software designed using Hyperstudio)
Language and Communication( Comprehension and Sentence Structure)
This project was done with a group of Special Needs children in the
Moderate range of learning difficulties aged between 12-15 years. This
project would also be suitable for the junior classes or with children
with Specific Language difficulties.
Goals of the Project:
1. To assist the students understanding of prepositions.
2. To use this piece of Software as an instructional aid and also as a
Drill and Practice activity with my class and with other classes within
3. To use this piece of software as a revision tool to ascertain what
has been learned and to highlight what needs to be done or revised.
4. To present the learning materials in multiple ways using audio and
5. This piece of software will not only, develop prepositions but also
expand the child's verbal comprehension, extend vocabulary and expressive
language and build on pre-language concepts.
6. To provide the group with the opportunity to select relevant data,
print out appropriate graphics, and scan and save these graphics as jpgs.
One of the most important areas in the Curriculum of Special Needs children
is the area of Language and Communication. Prepositions present problems
not only for Special Needs Children but also for children with Auditory
Memory and children with Visual Perception problems. As prepositions are
used to denote place, position or time in conjunction with a noun or pronoun,
an understanding of them is important to assist sentence structure and
meaning. The ability to understand and use simple prepositions is part
of the language objectives for younger Special Needs pupils while older
pupils would be assisted in developing an understanding and use of more
This finished piece of software, designed using the authoring package
Hyperstudio, is displayed on the school computers. The three areas covered
are Basic Prepositions, Other Prepositions and Test. There is an Activity
Booklet available for each stack. Posters from the product are displayed
on the wall.
The Pupils need to have the necessary attention span and comprehension
level to understand the content, and to learn the concepts.
Some keyboard skills are desirable to assist in writing up the project.
They need to be open to new knowledge and to grasp its relevance.
The teacher needs to decide on the content, pace of the project and teach
the IT skills necessary for the project beforehand.
The project needs to be structured by the teacher to make the maximum
use of the time allotted, and to ensure the desired learning outcome for
To use the software when completed the students need to have fairly good
mouse control, though the software can also be activated by use of the
Management: Tasks were
allotted to the students working on the project. The pictures for the
project were taken from Microsoft Publisher '98 as the students in the
class weren't familiar with the workings of the digital camera at that
time. Scanning the pictures took some time as they had to be resized for
the project and saved in the folder allotted for them before importing
them into the graphic object area in Hyperstudio. The worksheets for the
Activity Booklet were tested on the class to see how they responded to
them and adjustments were made according to the results. The booklet provided
the child with the opportunity of following through on what had been learned.
Designing the Test Stack necessitated presenting the student in some cases
with the same objects but in different positions e.g., Which picture shows
the airplane above / below the cloud? This meant designing new pictures
and scanning them in. The addition of sound to each picture completed
Organisation of Class: The
students chosen for the project came from the two senior classes. This
involved working out changes in timetables and sharing of students between
on the project increased the students understanding of the content and
assisted learning. The addition of appropriate sounds e.g. an applause
if the child gets the correct answer provides instant feedback for the
student. The Test Stack will allow the teacher to measure the student's
progress and to see where further teaching is necessary, or where teaching
It is important to plan the project beforehand and to set the pace and
content appropriate to the student's ability and understanding.
Clare's Special School