Doing this assignment I had no idea what kind of technologies were out there to help with students and their disabilities. I found this assignment to be challenging, and difficult. So the only thing I could think of was to make a phone call to my mom, who is a math teacher at my old high school. I asked about some of the things that they might be using to help with these students. She told me about a few that they had in place and so that gave me an idea of where to start looking.
So I started my research and found that there are numerous technological devices, and apps to help with all kinds of disabilities. One that I found most interesting was a software called Mathtalk. In this software you can write out a problem using your voice and it will input it into the computer. Also this software makes the need for parents to write out these math problems null, if your child/student is blind. Also within this software, it allows the student to print their work in braille, so they can read it and check it to make sure there are no errors within their work. I just thought that this software was the neatest and interesting "new to me" tool to help those students that are blind. Within the website I found several demo videos explaining and showing how to do each different type of math problem that you may encounter. I would definitely like to use this tool if I was lucky enough to have a blind student in my class. I was fortunate to have a blind classmate when I was going to high school, and I was amazed at how her other developed senses allowed her to learn differently than the rest of the class. it might be difficult or more work to have a blind student, but I think that it would be very interesting to learn through his/her method. I want to teach high school math and with this software you can do several types of mathematical problems from, algebra to calculus and more. Click here to view examples of different problems, and commands using mathtalk.
Assistve Technologies for the Classroom- Tonya Murphy
Assistive Technology in the Classroom
The two most amazing forms of assistive technology I found were the FaceMouse and the Sip-and-Puff Systems. Both of these programs are for students that struggle with mobility.
The FaceMouse uses the webcams as a computer mouse. Different movements of the head and different facial expressions will operate different commands on the computer. The Sip-and Puff Systems uses a student’s breath to operate a mouthstick which according to this site is similar to a joystick. I located this information on the website 8 Helpful Assistive Technology Tools for Your Classroom. If available, I would definitely use these programs in my classroom. This would give the students that feeling of independence of not having to rely on help all of the time.
I also watched the video on the ipad using voice over designed for the blind. This would be a very useful tool in the classroom. It would give the student a little bit of independence by being able to find things he/she may be looking for without having to get constant help. The ipad seemed hard to use. It wouldn’t do some of the things he was trying to show to the audience. This could have been because he was going too fast trying to get all the information covered in a short amount of time, but what he did cover seemed helpful. Audio books were available on the ipad which is a great tool because you can get the textbooks on an audiobook for the blind as well.
Assistive Technology in the Classroom- Sherri Hudson
Assistive Technologies for Classrooms
In the video, Assistive Technologies for Vision and Hearing Impaired Children the instructors gave their students the opportunity to identify, explore, investigate, question, and interact with their environment using customized learning.
Text to speech
Another assistive tool is the Mountbatten, a technology for the blind that is designed for audio and tactile feedback. It can receive files from computers as well as save them to computers.
The assistive technology for the blind and hearing impaired reminded me that I have to teach English, a form of a communication class. When they write papers I can tell them to use Purdue Owl or Son of Citation Machine to check their works cited page. In Microsoft office there is spell/grammar check, and it will definitely help my students. Dictionaries and thesauruses come in handy too, but there is nothing better than a reference website to help my students know the literary jargon. Glossary of Literary Terms
My eleventh grade English teacher read our papers, found common mistakes, and posted them in a Powerpoint for the whole class to see each others' epic fails. When I passed his class I found out he did that to be slightly funny, but mostly to let us learn from each other mistakes. It actually worked. When I'm an English teacher I'll do the same and I'll need a laser pointer to present my students' out of place commas.