Saturday, April 26, 2014

EDUC7724 Adadptive Technologies Week 4 Post Response

Like my classmate, Elizabeth Ferry, mentioned in her post this week I would imagine that there is some corner closet in my school as well that is housing a number of Adaptive Technology devices that are sitting on a shelf collecting dust.  However, I don't believe there is an abundance of them that would require us to inventory or organize them. In terms of students at my school using devices I am aware of only one child who is assisted with a hearing device, which is virtually unnoticeable. Unnoticeable to we teachers, but how about to the student wearing it? or his/her classmates?

There are most likely a number of students in need that may be reluctant to wear or use such  AT devices. Especially students at the middle school & high school level as those are ages where many students, are just trying to fit in.  When I researched further on reluctant students and AT devices I found a slideshow “Assisitive Technolgoies for students with special needs” that outlines the steps that should be taken in order to find the most  appropriate and helpful device. I thought it was good advice to “Brainstorm different assistive technologies that can help the student. There should be a range of options and the goals for the technology to help the students adapt with. “ 

The slideshow also recommends that the student be observed with the device to see how well the device helps and to what degree before purchasing the tool. I think that is an important point/step in the process; to determine to what extent the device is actually helping. In addition to the device yielding significant results, it is also VERY important to involve the student in the process and not to waste money on a device that a student knows they will never use, hence facing reluctance. Definitely good advice, and one that may result in those closets full of unused uninventoried devices, if not taken into consideration.

It is suggested to "keep it as simple as possible", also another important consideration. The example given in the slideshow can be seen below:

Overall it appears that a lot of work and consideration is necessary in the process of not only selecting and determining the BEST AT device for a student, but also to the extent in which the device will actually be used. We as educators and support staff need to be aware that there may be times when we will be faced with the challenge of a child who may be reluctant to use an AT device and be prepared to take the appropriate steps.

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