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Collection: Video and Captioning

purple arrow (1137 bytes)NCIP Profile: Captioning Helps a Student Get the Big Picture

NCIP Staff, 1994

Soon after the Brown Middle School in Newton, Massachusetts, received a captioning workstation through a federal research grant, co-teachers Sue Lesser-Seltzer and Ellen Waite and their students with language learning disabilities brainstormed how each student might use the technology.

Franklin Castillo, a student who according to Ellen "struggles with getting the whole picture," chose to caption one of his favorite sitcoms. Rather than transcribe every word spoken -- the traditional way to caption -- Franklin and his teachers decided that Franklin would only describe the important action in each sequence.

After replaying the video several times, Franklin was able to clearly describe the key ideas in different parts of the story. For example, during a scene in which one character was trying to serenade an unimpressed young woman, Franklin wrote, Steve is singing a love song to Laura. Steve really gets into the song and doesn't realize Laura has left the room.

"I believe that this process was a true learning experience as Franklin himself began to understand the whole plot," said Ellen. "Franklin was absolutely delighted with the finished project and got a great deal of positive feedback from his classmates."

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This material was developed by the National Center to Improve Practice (NCIP), located at Education Development Center, Inc. in Newton, Massachusetts.  NCIP was funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs from October 1, 1992 - September 30, 1998, Grant #H180N20013.  Permission is granted to copy and disseminate this information.  If you do so, please cite NCIP.   Contents do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by NCIP, EDC, or the U.S. Government.  This site was last updated in September 1998. 

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