Assistive Technology


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This presentation includes several online resources about the benefits of Assistive Technology in the classroom for students with disabilities.

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Assistive Technology

  1. 1. Assistive Technology Presentation<br />Chelsia Rae Hopkins<br />
  2. 2. What is Assistive Technology?<br />Assistive Technology is defined as: Any of a wide variety of technology applications designed to help students with disabilities to learn, communicate, and otherwise function more independently by bypassing their disabilities. <br />Bursuck, William D.; Friend, Marilyn. Including Students with Special Needs: A Practical Guide for Classroom Teachers, ed. 5<br />Have a learning disability<br />Have a behavior disorder<br />Are learning English as a second language<br />Are autistic <br />Are cognitively challenged<br />Have an emotional disorder<br />Have a hearing impairment<br />Have a visual impairment<br />Have a speech impairment<br />Have a developmental delay<br /> (etc.)<br />Students may benefit from Assistive Technology if they:<br />
  3. 3. Why is it important that we incorporate this into our classrooms?<br />All students deserve an equal chance at academic success<br />Many students just need an alternate way of information input or information output<br />Details about Assistive Technology should be listed on our students’ IEPs<br />
  4. 4. There are several ways in which we as educators can use assistive technology to ensure that all students have a fair chance at success and equal opportunities in our classrooms.Many resources on the Internet explain various methods of using Assistive Technology in detail. I have included six of the many helpful resources available…<br />
  5. 5. How can we incorporate Assistive Technology (AT) into our classrooms? <br />The following website is all about hearing. It discusses (HATS) or Hearing Assistive Technology Systems which are devices and ways to make hearing and communication easier for our students. There are several tips, such as adjusting the distance between the sound source and the listener and getting rid of any noise competition in the environment. Hearing ATs can be beneficial for all students, not just those with hearing impairments. <br /><br />The following website discusses assistive technologies for students with mild disabilities. There are high-tech, low-tech, and no-tech assistive devices. Some of the mild disability cases can benefit from the low & no-tech devices. Organization, note-taking, writing, academic productivity, access to reference and general educational materials, and cognitive assistance are some identified areas of instruction (Lahm &Morissette) in which assistive technology can assist students.<br /><br />Resource 1<br />Resource 2<br />
  6. 6. How can we incorporate AT into our classrooms?<br />The website listed below discusses various types of touch screens and Tablet PCs, which prove to be excellent AT tools for students with low motor skills. Touch screen overlays and the programs to accompany them are easy to install onto our classroom computers.<br />There are also reading and writing devices such as the “Reader” and the “digiscribble.” The “Reader” converts audio to text and the “digiscribble” converts poor handwriting to text. The “Reader” is great for vision impaired or dyslexic students.<br /><br />The link below is one to the website of the Georgia Project for Assistive Technology developed by the Georgia Department of Education. This site not only lists several devices, but also the background and details of what AT encompasses, including the disability legislations that support it. The website states that assistive technology “provides IEP teams with the flexibility to provide a range of technology solutions to assist students in completing tasks within relevant instructional or access areas.” From this website, we really see the importance of taking AT seriously. <br /><br />Resource 3<br />Resource 4<br />
  7. 7. How can we incorporate AT into our classrooms?<br />The website listed below discusses how the iPod can be applied as an educational tool to assist students with disabilities. For example, the iPod Touch can be used to assist the visually impaired student. There are certain applications that can be downloaded on this device which allow students to listen to books, and even change the color, font size, and spacing of text to make it easier to see. <br /><br />The website listed below is a link to an article that discusses various AT tools for autistic students. Boardmaker is a Mayer-Johnson software program that is a great assistive technology tool for students with Autism. Since some of these students get distracted by unimportant objects in the background, this tool can be used to “unclutter” photographs that are used in games and other activities by the teacher.<br />"Written by Susan Stokes under a contract with CESA 7 and funded by a discretionary grant from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.”<br />Resource 5<br />Resource 6<br />
  8. 8. Let’s Make Accommodations for our Students with Disabilities…<br />It is helpful if teachers create a collaborative effort with families of their students with disabilities, mild or severe. Regular communication between parents and teachers is important because parents can provide valuable information about teaching the student and they may also need to learn from the teacher how to practice skills learned in school while at home. <br />Teachers should be considerate of any cultural or linguistic differencesand be careful not to get frustrated or judge these differences.<br />It is important to recruit the help of naturalsupport systems. Some of these people include peers, older students, parent volunteers, student teachers, interns, administrators, etc. They can help in the classroom with activities such as reading stories, tutoring, or assisting a small group of students that includes typical learners and those with an intellectual disability.<br />We cannot forget about assistive technology.Digital cameras , computer software, iPods and other technological tools can be used in the classroom to assist with learning. These tools can help our students with disabilities to communicate.<br />