Assistive Technology in Education

I have just had an article I wrote for nasen published in the March edition of nasen connect. Hopefully, this will start a debate about the role of Assistive Technology in the UK. Since BECTA has gone there are no goto places for Information on using ICT as an Assistive Technology or a teaching and learning tool

Where do schools learn about Assistive Technology? I think it’s a bit hit and miss and we need to challenge schools who say its too expensive and deny SEN pupils their opportunity to show their ability. What do you think?

Tap

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This is a new way to control a keyboard by wearing these rings on your finger and typing in the air with combinations of finger movements. Similar to the old Quinky device but brought into the 21st Century. Hopefully I have been provised a set to evaluate and will feedback on how they are used in the meantime here is some information

Tapwithus

Sound Solutions

At #bettshow2019 I came across this company. They provide a mobile sound field which helps everyone including teachers saving their voice ! They not only do soundfields using the last bandwidth DAB frequency they also look at how to make environments more sound friendly to all – not just the hearing impaired. Lovely people – swing by their website and see what they have to offer you. http://www.rgsoundsolutions.co.uk 

ToodleBit

“A creative, hands on approach to teaching computing.”

This is the strapline for a innovative approach to teaching computing. Matthew Bevan attended BETT last year and was challenge by the lack of progression and creativity  in computing . So he went away and came up with a scheme of work that emphasizes high engagement with a practical side that encourages children to experiment and be creative in their solutions.

If you are busy teacher and don’t want to be a specialist computing teacher then this approach is for you. ToodleBit provides the kit which was actually difficult to put together. “Took a bit of research ,” Matthew says, ” Teachers won’t have time to bring together all the tools they need so we have done that work for them and given them a direction they can take forward with the children.” This is a primary tool. But you can make exciting tools like this anemometer to measure wind speed:-

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Orcam MyReader

I have been working with a client who has severe visual impairment and just this weekend we bought an Orcam My Reader device. She is an author and finds large magnification of text very difficult to practical use as she reads ahead for meaning and the slowness of the magnification way makes that difficult. Using the Orcam to review her research for addition to her book having a tool like Orcam that can read the text back to her both from printed and screen materials on a computer/mobile device is just amazing for her. If you want to know more details check out this video clip. It is for the Orcam MyEye – both MyReader and MyEye have similar functions  but the MyEye does facial and product recognition whereas the MyReader is just for reading and it’s slightly cheaper. Both devices cost between £2,000 -£3,000 depending on which device and what accessories are required:-