Lawton_Some kids at Greiner School for the Handicapped in Lawton have never been able to read or write a word - but, now they can. They're learning more every day, thanks to computers and those who donated them. The computers are helping the students learn to read, and write, and much more. They're learning multiplication tables, and even the states and their capitals.
The donations are turning out to be a wonderful teaching tool. Computer Teacher Joy Burrow works with six students at a time to help them find their way around a keyboard. She isn't their only teacher, but she's the reason the students have any computer at all.
Some of her adult students don't even know their ABCs, but they're learning them by matching the shapes of letters on a sheet of paper with the letters on the keyboard. This exercise helps the students form the same words on the screen in front of them. "It may not seem like a big thing, but when they copy something, they're learning the keyboard, they're learning their numbers," says Burrows.
They are also learning another way to communicate. "When she [one of her students] writes her name, it looks like a three year old wrote it," says Burrow. "But when she does it on a computer, she can find the letters and write it down, and it's exciting for them to have the printed paper." Burrow always prints out the students work for them, so they can share it with friends and family. "They're so prideful in what they've accomplished," she says. "We're very, very happy about that."
Each Friday, the students are allowed to play computer games - but, others prefer to keep learning. "There are about four different students, that when they come in on Friday, they want to do a paper," says Burrow. "Can you imagine? Not play a game? They want to do a paper!" She has worked at the school for 15 years, but wanted to stay involved after she retired. "It's great...wonderful. I love it. I think I have more fun than they do, and that's really saying something," she says.
Burrow says she can't thank the community enough for helping create computer lab. Last December, she wrote a letter to the editor of the Lawton Constitution. The day it was published, she had two calls from people wanting to buy the school new computers. Two days later, they received five new computers with printers - donated by a local company.