For students with disability, whether physical or mental, the classroom environment can be too limiting. They can’t focus all the time or they focus too much, noises are either too loud or too quiet, the subject matter can be to complex or lacking, output may be oral or written. Unfortunately all these caveats do not fit within the ‘typical,cookie-cutter classroom’ but reality is these classroom are the typical. So instead of dragging our feet as educators, and handing these students off to EAs, why not use technology to help bridge that gap.

 

Assistive Technology can be as simple as ‘magnification on an Ipad’ or as complex visual input Ipad for quadriplegic or non-mobile students. Below I have looked at the technology side of supporting these students. In regards to output there are the more well-known aids such as ‘Speech To Text’ within Google, or Spell check and using program tools. Allowing students to demonstrate their learning without hesitancy of language issues is key for helping bridge the gap between students. Co:Writer Universal is a program which can have audio input, as well as offer predictive texts. Predictive test is an auto-generated and guiding form of media that can help students who have difficulty focusing on long thoughts such as a sentence, or as staying on topic within the sentence. Mathtalk is a program that allows students to talk through their thinking and their reasoning for math. This allows students who either ;just see the answer’ to demonstrate their learning or those who have trouble writing clearly.

 

Input disabilities, especially from written sources is some of the most common disabilities, such as dyslexia, ways around written input is key. As students grow older we tend to step away from ‘Read Aloud Books’, but we should be leaning more into this frame. Sites such as Audible.com have a library of books that are appropriate for any age. In regards to textbooks, some have audio-assisted versions online, or you have A-B Partner students pairing strong readers with those who need the aid. Accessing texts online such as with the aid of Kurzweil Education, it has the ability to magnify or offer ‘Open Dyslexic Text’ to help offer students individuality within their task.

 

FOR MORE MEDIA AID PLEASE REFER TO: https://disabilitycreditcanada.com/14-assistive-technologies-individuals-learning-disability/