Students with disabilities are also deserving of equal opportunities to able-bodied students. This is why it is important to integrate innovative learning tools in the classroom. There are devices that assist with impairments such as dyslexia, Cerebral Palsy, hearing difficulties, etc.
These tools are designed to make the learning experience more pleasant for students living with disabilities. To curb the frustration of lagging behind or feeling inadequate, the assistive technology mitigates weaknesses.
Among many tools, there are assistive devices that allow disabled students to access their strengths and compete in the classroom with more ease. Here are some of the most innovative tools out there.
Electronic Worksheets allow a student with a condition like dyslexia to navigate their work and to help them complete their assignments. The technology allows students to work with text, equations and numbers using text-to-speech and/or speech synthesizing.
An electronic worksheet works through a computer screen and process text on the screen by reading it out aloud as well. The text can be translated from the student’s speech and can also scan printed pages such as books and letters as well as digital text from the internet.
Electronic worksheets are available for a range of subjects and the speech synthesizer allows students to organize and align their work.
Lucy 4 Keyboard
LUCY 4 Keyboard is probably one of the most innovative tools out there for people who have difficulty navigating communication devices such as a computer, phone or printer. The device is designed for people who cannot use their hands efficiently and can be operated with your head similar to a head pointer.
The device requires a pair of glasses or a headband that you can use as a laser pointer. The technology is ideal for people with a condition like Cerebral Palsy, and allow for keeping up in the classroom.
Students with disabilities can also get reliable help with essay writing from having their essays written or edited by a professional. The expert writers can help the students, from US to Australia, with dissertation, term papers, thesis and other writing work as well.
SMART Belt is an innovation designed by a group of seniors at Rice University to detect epileptic seizures. Because seizures often happen without warning so this belt ensures that a seizure is detected beforehand. The belt is connected to a device that is in possession of the designated caretaker, so the device is ideal for small children as well.
The acronym SMART stands for Seizure Monitoring and Response Transducer, and the belt is made of silver chloride electrodes to detect a change in skin conductance and monitors breathing.
Assistive technology devices like SMART belt monitor the respiration rates and indications of increased sweating. As soon as the parent gets a signal, they can send help or assistance with haste.
Students with a disability like dyscalculia benefit from a talking calculator and the gadget which simplifies checking assignment, reading numbers and performing calculations. A talking calculator is a simple tool that offers a benefit to students who struggle with mathematics.
Talking calculators work similarly to text-to-voice devices, and it processes voice into audible tracks. Students with the device can also process words, and use the device to improve their reading and comprehension skills.
Talking calculators ease having to write down or read numbers that frustrate students with learning disabilities. Such technology allows for flow and ease in the classroom for students thereby ensuring better grades and higher chances of internships for disabled students.
FM Systems are for people who have hearing difficulties and can be used in classrooms and lecture halls to ensure that the lecturer is audible. The device allows the student to tune into an FM transmitter and a microphone is worn by the speaker, the students receive headsets to ensure that hear the class loud and clearly.
The device is portable and is usually available to borrow from school facilities. The device looks different according to the manufacturer but they are generally small and easy to carry around. The speaker also wears a small undisruptive microphone.
Although learning disabilities vary in their severity, assistive technology for students with disabilities is coming up with new ways to ease disabilities that affect a student. These innovations are necessary to have less segregated classrooms and lessen the stigma attached to disabilities.
By making simple participation easier, academic performance is boosted immensely and the student feels and becomes more competent. From simplifying lectures to processing words and numbers into text, new technology is coming up with exceptional ways to allow for 100% participation in the classroom.
Joshua Robinson is an academic writer and editor and blogger with deep interest in technology arena. His reviews on gadgets, latest machines and tools and software have a massive fan-following. He is consistently working on integrating technology with classroom teaching to improve results for the students. In his free time, he plays tennis, practices mindfulness and reads mystery novels.