We worked together to find Assistive Technology (AT) and Universal Design for Learning (UDL) in order to help elementary school children of different needs. We feel that these various ATs and UDLs will allow us, as teachers, to differentiate the curriculum; thus, enabling us to meet the needs of our diverse students. We specifically focused on ATs and UDLs that will help elementary school children learn to read and write. Each slide in our presentation focuses on a different AT or UDL, includes a picture of the product, a link where more information can be found, and the initials of the individual who completed that slide.
Specialized grips can come on a variety of tools including pencils, pens, paintbrushes, crayons, and scissors. The grips and shapes on these tools can assist students with fine motor skills problems. Certain grips, like the ones for pencils, can be used for all students in order to help reduce writing fatigue and assist students in holding their pencils properly.
These sloped work surfaces can help students with their reading and writing by bringing the material to their level and minimizing eye strain. Slant boards can also be slip resistant so that students with motor skills problems can focus less on keeping their materials on the board and more on their work. Additionally slant boards can have a clip at the top to hold papers and books in place.
There are many features of eBooks that can be beneficial to students, including those with learning disabilities. Some of these features include hotspots, dictionaries, highlighting of text, narrations, and animations. EBooks are a great option for teachers who may not have enough time to individual assist every student during independent reading time. The eBook provides the scaffolding a student needs without a teacher.
Computers as adaptive technology have a very wide range of usage for those with disabilities. Students with handwriting problems can easily use computers to help type and neatly organize their notes. Computers themselves can even be adapted to meet the varying needs of students. Some adaptations include speech recognition, on screen keyboards, and touch screens.
Reading time communicator can help motivate students to read. Adults read and record the book, page by page and label the page with a color coded sticker. The sticker matches a button on the book holder. Children *air quotes* read the book by following along and pressing the same color button to hear the recording. As students become more confident with the story, they will be able to read the book without the use of the recordings.
Earbonics is computer software that helps students increase reading, speaking, and comprehension skills by strengthening phonological awareness through 6 interactive learning games with over 300 levels. This version focuses on ages 4-7 and provides reports to help teachers monitor students’ progress on the five key aspects of reading.
The hip talk is a portable communicator that can be worn on the hip like a fanny pack. Adults can prerecord sentences to match pictures for the students to use. A picture may say eat but the recording may say “I am hungry” The setting can be changed to match different activities and messages. This device helps students communicate their ideas quicker and with less frustration than trying to communicate verbally.
Students with physical challenges may struggle with turning the pages of traditional books, which makes reading frustrating. The touch turner will hold the book and turn the pages for the student. On some models the students simply touch the switch with any kind of tool, other models are motion activated. This can help students feel more independent and less frustrated while reading.
Students often learn to spell words based on how they sound. Thus, phone may be spelled F O N by an emergent reader. Franklin Speaking Children’s Dictionary and Spell Corrector can help students work on the correct spelling of the words. So the invented spelling of phone would be corrected. This device also provides definitions, has a rhyme finder, word games, and vocabulary list options.
An alternative keyboard for students who have difficulty using a standard keyboard. Provided with six different overlays, teachers can facilitate physical and cognitive access for students to locate letters and numbers.
An intel reader converts printed text to digital text and reads it aloud. This equipment enhances independence for people with visual impairments, blindness, or reading learning disabilities.
Click-N-Type is an on-screen virtual keyboard designed for anyone that is physically challenged and cannot use a regular keyboard. The physically challenged person would use keystrokes using a trackball, pointing device, or touching the screen.
This is a line marker designed for individuals with perceptual or attending disabilities. This transparent strip acts like a highlighter focusing students attention to the line or word being read.
IntelliTalk can be used to track students’ responses to quizs and print student records. Students can combine graphics, text and speech to enhance writing and communication skills.
Assistive Technology & Universal Design for Learning: HelpingElementary School Children Learn to Read and Write Kelly Stoeckle Courtney Tyra Melissa Murphy
Hip Talk http://blog.eastersealstech.com/communicating-with-assistive-technology/ or http://enablingdevices.com/catalog/assistive_technology_devices_used_in_edCT ucation/hip-talkers/hip-talk-12-wlevels-accessory