Archive for the ‘AT for Access’ Category

Switch Access and the iPad – Get the Scoop from Jane Farrall

Jane Farrall knowledge on AAC, switch access and AT brings me to her blog often to glean her expertise on any of the those topics (and more…). Here is a recent post about switch access and the iPad that helped sift and winnow what the current options were for iOS.

How do I use a Switch with an iPad? – Jane Farrall’s Blog Post

Jane also has other recent posts on specific switch components that I recommend you peruse if you are interested in switch access for iPad on her blog.


More Intellitools Resources

Here are some training resources for Intellitools Classroom Suite

Intellitools Student Activity Checklist

Intellitools Reading Tutor Scope and Sequence

CS4 Training Resources

Scanning Access for Switch Users

Quick Tips for Early Learning Activities

ICS Activity resource list  (previously posted)

Enjoy creating with Intellitools!


Sound Stamp App for the Echo Pen

Echo Pen

The Echo or Pulse Pen is wonderful note taking tool for students to take notes and simultaneously record lectures (audio record) using special Livescribe notebook paper and the electronic Echo or Pulse Pen (Echo is their newest pen and Pulse the first generation of the Livescribe Pens) .  The beauty of this pen is that you can write or draw as much or as little as you want to while note taking. The recording tool records what is spoken at the same time as you write and is able to be played back (out loud) from the pen using menu tools provided on the paper.

I have recommended this pen for students in K-12 education as well as college students and business people who have difficulty with spelling, reading, recall, comprehension when required to gather information from lectures, meetings or interviews as a few examples. It’s appearance does not suggest a special need, just looks like another electronic gadget -which it is!

Valuable tool? Yes! –  and for more than just note taking!

We have been using the Pulse Pen at our school for about the last two years for note taking but also as a medium tech tool for adapting worksheets for students who have difficulty accessing print. Rather than scanning worksheets into a computer,  one of our awesome paraprofessionals has been recording information on sticky labels printed with Livescribe paper (this can be done on sticky/adhesive labels with laser printers from the Livescribe Desktop).  Using the sticky or adhesive labels with printed Livescribe paper, the labels are placed on assignment worksheets, recorded on with worksheet information or directions for the assignment. This provides an auditory means of accessing the worksheet text using the labels and pen and also a way for him to record his answers using the labels provided. Worksheets, study guides and vocabulary are a few of the uses for this modification using the Pulse Pen.

Sound Stamp App for Echo Pen

Livescribe Echo/Pulse pens have a number of additional apps for purchase providing different tools that can be loaded onto your pen. One new tools is called the Sound Sticker which records messages on small stickers that can be re-recorded on using the app software on your pen.

A similar concept as what we had done with creating labels, the Sound Sticker audio can be erased and re recorded, possible but not as simple of a process as having a delete button on the menu when removing a record audio using the Sound Sticker app.

For more information on Sound Sticker App, or the Livescribe Echo or Pulse Pen in K-12 education visit their website for videos describing many ways it can be used.. There are videos of creative ways it has been used to support education, and of course only limited by your imagination and needs.

For information on the Livescribe pens with different memory capacity,  more apps (dictionary, spelling apps and more) and accessories (different size and types of notebooks, cases, etc.), visit the Livescribe store. You will also find refurbished pens available at a discounted price!

Explore the Echo/Pulse Pen and be creative in ways it can help support your students! If you have questions on how to print on sticky labels feel free ask in the comments.


Splashtop App and Splashtop Remote

Thanks to Suzanne Feit and the QIAT listserv, I was introduced to Splashtop app that can remote into your computer to operate Win based or Mac based software on your computer. Suzanne’s example of accessing software as Intellitools Classroom Suite sparked my interest in how this might work.

Splash App installs on your iPod Touch or iPad and makes connection to your computer when complimentary software is installed on your computer. Using WIFI you can connect from your iDevice to your computer to operate software installed on your computer as remote desktop access.

Although I have only used it on my iPod Touch (which due to size of the device is somewhat limiting to access), found it easy to install on my computer and iPod Touch and after turning off my firewall easily connected to my computer displaying my desktop. I was able to type into Word, open a Blio book to read and navigate on my computer remotely. The software has great supports in its set up to get you connect with your IP address and ports easily.

I am excited about the possibilities of using our bread and butter Windows software available on our desktop or laptop extended to the highly portable, accessible and “cool” (kids love cool, we love our special needs kids to be cool like all other kids!) iDevices for learning opportunities for our students.

Splashtop is available for iDevices and Android and supports WIN and MAC OS.

Check out a video on You Tube about Splashtop with Classroom Suite:

Amazing! Have you tried it?


Onscreen Keyboard with Word Prediction

The need for an onscreen keyboard with word prediction, abbreviation expansion recently presented itself inorder to  supply an individual with a mobility impairment  access to his computer. My typical search and checking on previous favorites was stymied by the need to find some thing that had all the tools but also Win 7 compatible. Despite numerous searches, I was not coming up with a match and disappointed that previous favorites did not  appear to be Win 7 compatible.

Windows 7 operating system does have a great onscreen keyboard that is adjustable in size,  has basic word prediction, a hover tool (dwell)  for selection and different keyboard layouts. All great, but not quite enough for a dedicated on screen keyboard user.

With assistance from a experienced AT ECU guru from ATR (Thanks Phil!) I was provided several resources, one which I had not found in my searches –Word Logic. Word Logic’s Onscreen Keyboard had all that I was looking for and more!

Word Logic

Word Logic

Word Logic’s  Options  menu choices provides the ability to  customize its appearance,  window behavior, word prediction dictionaries, navigation/hovering time for selection or use with a mouse click as needed, to mention just a few. It’s word prediction also provides phrases offered in its prediction dictionary as well as abbreviation expansion and the ability to create your own dictionary word list. Recency was immediately available following use of new words.

Word Logic Optionspic

Word Logic Options

A new feature I found in Word Logic not typically present in other word prediction programs,  provides a feature that allow you to create buttons as a link to favorite websites within the onscreen keyboard window for easy access. I found this especially helpful for individuals who have limited but accurate mobility.

Word Logic was  easy to install and implement. It is also reasonably priced. Word Logics website also provides a Quick Guide  with directions to quickly get you going with the software.

Word Logic Tools

Word Logic Tools

Contact with Word Logic via email  found them very prompt in replying to questions and willing to accommodate specific requests about software purchasing. What a great find! If I were rating software I’d give Word Logic five stars from my initial use and their customer service!