The Arizona State School for the Deaf and the Blind Media Center has evolved from its humble beginnings 13 years ago from a checkout area for various and somewhat primitive teaching aids and machines into a modern, efficient instructional aid department which can supply not only projectors and routine educational media fare, but which has photography, videotape, and special project design and production capabilities as well. Although the staff is small—one media specialist, one artist, and one aide—the services are many, and several are highly specialized. Our goal, if it can be stated as such, is to make learning for our students as trenchant, effective, and entertaining as possible.
Most recently, the emphasis at this particular school is on language development and communication skills, employing a newly structured speech department. Taking this subject matter as well as the rest of the curriculum and making it usable by each individual student is no easy task. One learned concept, in terms of media, may have involved countless drawings, photographs, movies, games, puzzles, charts, and slides. The teacher who knows which particular media item or service is most effective with which particular student, working in conjunction with a knowledgeable media staff, can be said to be the perfect educational marriage. In this way, it takes three hands to throw the "switch" of learning—the student, the teacher, and media.