IPAD BUILT-IN ACCESSIBILITY FEATURES
The iPads provided as student devices in grades K-8 have many accessibility options built right into their operating system. These options help many students with disabilities gain access to the curriculum and perform tasks with greater independence. Please use the link to explore these tools in greater detail.
One tool frequently used is Speak Selection. Speak Selection is often recommended for students with disabilities in the area of reading. When this feature is enabled, the student can select text that is presented above their reading level and it will be read aloud, reducing or eliminating that barrier to the curriculum. If your child's special education team recommended text-to-speech when considering assistive technology and use an iPad for instruction, Speak Selection can be used.
How to enable Speak Selection:
1. Select> Settings
2. Select> General
3. Select> Accessibility
4. Touch the Speak Selection slide control to green
5. When your student touches and selects text, they will now have a "Speak" option
This technology does not work with text presented in image-based PDF formats. Additional applications and technology is needed to make this print accessible.
Another frequently used iPad tool is Voice Dictation. This can be a powerful built-in tool for students who struggle with writing. This is often considered and encouraged for students who struggle with writing and also have clear speech.
How to use Voice Dictation:
1. Tap the microphone icon on the iPad's onscreen keyboard. This tells the iPad you want to start dictating.
2. Talk. The iPad will listen to your voice and turn it into text as you talk.
3. Tap the "Done" button that appears onscreen to stop dictating. It may take a few seconds to turn the last words into text on the screen. Be sure to read it over. Voice dictation isn't perfect, so you may need to make a few adjustments using the keyboard.
APPS USED AS ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY
Using the Assistive Technology evaluation and consideration process, your student's special education team may have determined specialized apps are needed in order for them to successfully access the curriculum and meet their IEP goals. These are some of the more commonly used apps and information on how they are used.
SnapType for Occupational Therapy iPad App - Writing Technology
Snaptype for Occupational Therapy is an app that is used to take a paper handout and change it into a digital version that can be typed on instead of completed by handwriting. It is assistive technology considered for students with significant fine motor impairments impacting their ability to produce legible handwriting.
Camscanner App (often used with Notability) - Writing Technology
For students with fine motor impairments and handwriting difficulties, completing worksheets can be very frustrating. Often, the student's written output does not match their knowledge or ideas. Camscanner is sometimes considered for some students to use which enables them to use their iPad to take a photo of a worksheet, convert it to a PDF and then send it to another app, such as Notability. When opened in Notability, the student can then type on it or use the iPad's dictation technology to complete it. Notability has organizational supports where documents can be stored in color-coded folders.
Clicker Sentences App - Writing Technology
This app is sometimes considered by special education teams for students who do not have writing skills commensurate with their reading abilities. It is intended for students struggling with writing at the basic sentence level. It features a lowercase alphabet keyboard, picture cues, customizable sentence grids, and speech feedback.
Clicker Docs App - Writing Technology
Clicker Docs is another app considered for students with writing skills that are not commensurate with their reading abilities. This app provides customizable word prediction, subject-specific word bank support, and speech feedback.
Co:writer App - Writing Technology
Co:writer is another app considered by special education teams to meet the writing needs of students struggling to produce writing that reflects their knowledge and understanding of content. This app provides grammar-smart word prediction with topic dictionaries. It will also read writing back to check for accuracy.
Voice Dream App - Reading Technology
Voice Dream Reader is an app considered for students with severe reading disabilities. It reads articles, documents and books out loud with customizable text-to-speech technology. It supports many document formats including PDFs, Google Docs, Web articles, Bookshare books and audio books.
Prizmo App - Reading Technology
Prizmo is an app considered for students who struggle significantly with reading and have academic tasks that require them to read grade level text on worksheets or handouts. While our teachers are working to present material in multiple accessible formats to meet the needs of all students, there are some situations where this app is needed. It provides Optical Character Recognition technology to convert images of words into words that can be read by reading technology.
Inspiration Maps - Writing/Organization Technology
Often students with Learning Disabilities have difficulty organizing their ideas for the writing process. Inspiration Maps in a mind mapping tool that is sometimes considered for students who need help visually organizing their ideas. Diagrams, maps, organizers, brainstorms and text outlines can be created It can help students with organization as they add information to their graphic organizer. Speech to text (Dictation) can be used to add ideas as well as keyboarding.
iPad's Calendar App - Organization Technology
For students who struggle with distractibility and require frequent reminders from adults, reminders can be programmed into their Calendar app that pop up and alert them. For example, alerts can be programmed to remind a student to turn in an assignment, check their agenda, etc.
MyHomework App - Organization Technology
This app is a digital planner that can replace paper planners for students who struggle with handwriting. The account created in the app can be accessed from any computer, tablet or smartphone.
More information about this digital planner can be found here: https://myhomeworkapp.com/