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Assistive Technology in the Preschool Classroom

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Title: Assistive Technology in the Preschool Classroom


1
Assistive Technology in the Preschool Classroom
  • Jill Jump, MA/ CCC-SLP
  • UCP Aaron W. Perlman Center

2
Effective Use of the Computer with Young Children
3
Myths About Computers and Young Children
  • 1. Computers will make children smarter.
  • 2. Sitting close to the computer will damage a
    childs eyes.
  • 3. Computers give off harmful radiation.
  • 4. Children will become less social by using the
    computer,
  • 5. Children should understand how computers work.
  • 6. Making the child computer literate now will
    better prepare him for the future.

4
Cognitive Skills that Can Be Enhanced with the
Computer
  • Cause and effect
  • Picture to picture identification
  • Memory (visual and auditory)
  • Generalization of concepts from concrete to
    abstract
  • Making independent choices
  • Pre-readiness (shapes, colors, size)
  • Readiness (letters, numbers, beginning literacy)
  • Classification/categorization
  • Sequencing

5
Social Emotional Skillsthat can be Enhanced by
the Computer
  • Turn-taking
  • Peer interaction
  • Attending
  • Motivation
  • Raised self esteem through peer tutoring of
    another child
  • As a means to encourage friendship through common
    interest

6
Babies and Toddlers (0-3 years)
  • Exploratory Stage
  • Short Attention Span
  • Cause and Effect
  • Cant use mouse to point and click
  • Simple mouse skills begin at 30 months

7
Babies and Toddlers
  • Software Reader Rabbit Toddler
  • Fisher Price Toddler
  • Jump Start Toddler
  • Adaptations Expanded Keyboards
  • Switches
  • Touch Window
  • Use of Real objects as props

8
Preschool (3-5 year olds)
  • Can begin to work on click and drag skills and
    pull down menus
  • Open ended software that encourages exploration
    and creativity
  • Want to be in control
  • Ease of use is critical
  • Start of some text based input
  • Shared social activity

9
Preschool-Software
  • Disneys Ready for Math with Pooh
  • Fisher Price Learning in Toyland
  • Jump Start Preschool Deluxe
  • Millie and Bailey Preschool
  • More Bugs in a Box

10
Criteria for Selecting Softwarefor the
Preschool Classroom
11
Easy to Use
  • Limited keys for input
  • Easy in/out
  • Picture icons instead of written instructions

12
Levels of Difficulty
  • Ability to grow with the child or use with
    variety of levels of children.
  • Branching options available.
  • Good range of content.

13
High Interest Subject Matter
  • Graphics and sound are high quality and dont
    distract or compete.
  • Reinforces real world experiences.
  • Do not compete with but rather enhance program
    content.
  • Reaction to a key press should be immediately
    seen.
  • Opportunities for trial and error.

14
Adaptations to Level the Playing Field for
ALLChildren
15
Low Tech
  • Stick on keyboard letters
  • Color-coded special input keys
  • Keyboard masks
  • Keyguards
  • Cardboard tube for wrist rest
  • Trackballs
  • Pair of hands to facilitate waiting
  • Pointers
  • Change position of child and/or equipment
  • Place a piece of foam under trackball to slow
    down speed

16
High Tech
  • Voice output
  • Touch Windows
  • Big Keys
  • Expanded Keyboards
  • Child specific devices
  • Switches
  • AAC devices
  • Alternate keyboards

17
Integrating Computer Activity within the Early
Childhood Curriculum
  • Determine the childs specific goals.
  • Preview and select software to meet goals.
  • Select appropriate peripherals for computer input
    and possible speech or print output.
  • Experiment with software to discover the variety
    of ways it can be used.
  • Define prerequisite skills for operating software
    and hardware.

18
  • Plan both pre and post off computer classroom
    activities to
  • Prepare for computer activity.
  • Reinforce skills gained through computer
    activity.
  • Evaluate effectiveness of computer activity on an
    ongoing basis and modify as necessary.

19
Augmentative Communication
20
Definition of Augmentative and Alternative
Communication
  • Augmentative and alternative communication(AAC)
    refers to any approach designed to support,
    enhance, or augment the communication of
    individuals who are not independent communicators
    in all situations

21
Who is Augmentative Communication For?
  • Non-speaking individuals who are
  • Physically challenged
  • Multiply involved with unknown cognitive
    abilities
  • Physically able dyspraxic, language delayed
  • Pre-verbal or emergent verbal
  • Autistic
  • Developmentally delayed
  • Behavior disorders related to inability to
    communicate effectively

22
Who is Assistive Technology for?
  • Individuals who are
  • Physically involved but cognitively able
  • Physically involved with unknown cognitive
    abilities
  • Multiply involved with unknown cognitive
    abilities
  • Fine Motor difficulties
  • Developmentally delayed

23
General Philosophical Basis
  • 1) Technology and Augmentative Communication
    Systems can be very powerful, but they are
    useless in enabling children to realize their
    potential without appropriate training and a
    supportive environment.

24
  • 2) Augmentative language or assistive technology
    system means multiple systems.
  • The use of multiple systems is vastly more
    effective than use of a single system. System
    choice depends on the individual's situation,
    environment, needs, fatigue, and the
    communication partners,
  • 3) Assessment and evaluation are on-going TEAM
    processes.

25
  • 4) Vocabulary and Symbol selection are ongoing
    processes.
  • 5) Experiencing receptive use of augmentative
    systems is important for those children
    developing language for the first time.
    Augmentative communication is effectively taught
    in an environment comparable to foreign language
    immersion.

26
  • 6) Augmentative Communication and Assistive
    Technology is most effective if taught in an
    interactive and pragmatic format.
  • learning in functional situations
    facilitates generalization
  • anything that has some intrinsic motivation
    for the child is more likely to be practiced in
    different settings and used by the child.
  • motivation is governed by the amount of
    control and connection the child feels in the
    communicative interaction.

27
  • 7) Partner training can play an important role in
    the success of communication and adaptations.
  • 8) Classroom and home integration are crucial to
    success.
  • Children learn to use augmentative
    communication and assistive technology more
    effectively if it is integrated into all aspects
    of their day.
  • Communication needs and access needs will
    vary in different situations and need to be
    planned for ahead of time.

28
  • 9) The art and science of augmentative
    communication and Assistive Technology is still a
    developing field.
  • we are still learning new strategies
  • equipment/technology is rapidly changing
  • we don't have all the answers, research in
    this field is just beginning
  • we learn from the children and their
    reactions and preferences

29
  • 10) Implementing augmentative communication and
    assistive technology consumes an enormous amount
    of time and energy from therapists, teachers,
    parents and the child.
  • This is especially true if it is an addition
    to the curriculum instead of an integral part of
    it.

30
But its worth it!
  • improves self-concept and self esteem
  • provides motivation
  • reduce frustration and behavior problems
  • increase participation in daily life
  • facilitates learning by making learning
    interactive instead of passive
  • changes expectations of others for child's
    potential

31
Augmentative Communication Systems
  • Low Tech
  • Picture,Letter and Word Boards
  • Eye gaze board
  • Manual signing
  • High Tech
  • Dedicated Communication Devices
  • Computer Based Communication Devices
  • Voice Synthesizers

32
Real objects and Pictures
33
Braille and Object Board
34
Photo Choice Board
35
Barbara Bloomfield www.icontalk.com
36
(No Transcript)
37
Home Schedule
38
(No Transcript)
39
Adapted Picture Book
40
From Pati King DeBaun www.creativecommunicating.co
m
41
Mayer Johnson Company
  • http//www.mayer-johnson.com/
  • Boardmaker

42
Writing with Symbols
43
Software for Picture Support
  • BoardMaker (Mayer-Johnson)
  • www.mayer-johson.com
  • Writing with Symbols
  • www.mayer-johson.com
  • Picture It (Slater Software)
  • Pix Writer (Slater Software)
  • www.slatersoftware.com
  • IntelliTools
  • www.intellitools.com

44
Resources
  • National Center for Improved Practice in Special
    Education
  • http//www2.edc.org/NCIP/library/ec/toc.htm
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