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We've been busy this summer, reorganizing sections of this website and preparing to launch a whole NEW ABLE Tech website later this fall.
By accessing this link – AT Support Team Training page – you will gain access to all of the individual links below:
These Free sessions are designed for educators with a wide range of assistive technology knowledge, providing standards-based training, hands-on practice, and dynamic coaching for novice to expert educators and everyone in between. The lineup includes three workshops in the fall which will be repeated in the spring. School districts are invited to form "AT Support Teams" to attend the workshops together. Teams have the option of attending the series straight through, or registering for individual sessions, if pre-requisites are met.
We’ve also upped the ante on our AT Awards for this school year. Twelve AT Support Teams will be awarded $250 of AT devices to be used with students in their district! To qualify for the random drawings, teams must complete all assignments by deadline, and also submit a success story including a narrative and photo of a student using AT, along with signed release forms.Watch the ABLE Tech Website for updates and email firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for the Assistive Technology ListServ (AT-L) to receive timely news and information!
Upcoming Webinars: Mark Your Calendar - ABLE Tech is excited to offer a series of timely and informative webinars this fall. Click the link for details and plan to attend! Each 45 minute webinar will include time for questions, and will be archived for convenient viewing to fit your busy schedule! Check it out - use the link at the beginning of this paragraph.
Accessible Educational Materials (AEM): ABLE Tech Bookshare Contest - two "AT for AEM Awards" will be distributed during the 2017-18 school year. An iPad or comparable device will be awarded to the educator who submits a compelling story about how a student has benefited from Bookshare with assistance from ABLE Tech. Read all about it at the link above.
Online AT Curriculum: Coming Soon! ABLE Tech is developing an online AT Curriculum for educators to learn at their own pace in place of, or in addition to, in-person workshops! Anyone with an Internet connection can access this training! The site is scheduled to launch in September 2017. Watch your email in-box for announcements on the AT-L.
AT Consultations: Updated Online Resources - ABLE Tech provides AT Consultations to guide educators in the provision of assistive technology to help students with disabilities reach their educational goals. New this fall, we have updated our online resources to guide you through the steps of conducting an AT Assessment. Resources guided by the Quality Indicators for Assistive Technology (QIAT) and are aligned with our in-personworkshops and online curriculum.
TechAccessOK 2017 - Coming in October
TechAccessOK is Oklahoma’s premier conference that focuses on accessibility in technology and the web. The conference will take place at the Reed Conference Center in Midwest City, Oklahoma, just minutes away from Will Rogers World Airport.
The second annual conference is sponsored by the Oklahoma State Department of Education, Southwest ADA Center, iPro Oklahoma and sponsored and organized by Oklahoma ABLE Tech. Registrants will join experts in accessibility from Oklahoma, the southwest region and the nation. Last year's inaugural conference brought together professionals, corporations, service organizations, and key thought leaders to learn about the tools, practices and innovations that contribute to accessibility for all.
The Stillwater AT Support Team saw mixed success when trialing a reading pen with a student who was in special education classes at the Junior High last term. The 15-year-old needed assistance with reading and written language, but did not feel like this device was a good fit.
Reading Pen Basic Edition (left)
The team reported that the student found some aspects helpful such as the voice output for the words; however, she felt that it was very tricky to use and not always accurate. Also, while it pronounced the word aloud, it did not voice the definition to help with unfamiliar words. Editor’s note: A newer device which is now available may suit this student better. The C-Pen Reader Pen (right, and external link) has more life-like voices, and improved features such as reading definitions aloud.
Results with Co:Writer (logo left) were more promising. The team says the student has enjoyed using Co:Writer for word processing support. It provided options the student could recognize, allowing her to complete short answer questions and written assignments in class. The Co-Writer app decreased the time it took her to write, and increased the accuracy of her written work.
The trial with the Reading Pen and Co-Writer helped the student realize that reading and writing don't have to be stressful because there are supports available to make these tasks easier.
Has assistive technology helped someone you know? Share your story!
Submit our Online Success Story and Photo Consent Form.
Case Study: AT for Writing
Student: A Fifth grader was having difficulty writing essays and other assignments which called for composing ideas on paper. He and his peers were learning how to write essays with five paragraphs.
Possible Recommendations: The student could use a laptop or Chromebook to work on composition, as well as typing skills. These computers can be set-up with software for word processing, including text-to-speech, so the student can listen to what he has written to make sure it is correct. Chrome extensions such as a graphic organizer will help the student brainstorm the topic and build a graphic organizer of his thoughts.
Possible Goals and Outcomes: By the end of the school year, the student will be able to independently write five paragraphs which will include a thesis statement and a main purpose for each of the five paragraphs.
ABLE Tech provides Case Studies as examples for educators considering assistive technology (AT) for students with disabilities to help them reach their educational goals. Visit AT Discovery for feature matching solutions based on the Student, Environment, Task and Tools (SETT) framework developed by Dr. Joy Zabala.
Visual Edge Slant Board
The Slant Board puts your reading surface at the optimal 22 degree angle while its two collapsible legs make it portable and discrete. The folding legs will lock in the extended position making it very stable then fold flat for compact storage.
Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price: $30
Purchased from: Visual Edge
Each week ABLE Tech features one of the many assistive technology devices available for trial through our device loan program. Individuals have the ability to see, touch, and try AT to help them in the decision-making process by providing:
Our inventory offers a wide range of AT for communication, computer access, hearing, vision, daily living, environmental adaptations, learning/development, health, safety, and recreation.
Updated Transition Guide;
The U.S. Dept. of Education Office of Special Education has recently updated its Transition Guide to reflect changes in IDEA based on ESSA. The purpose of the guide is to aid educators and families in preparing students with disabilities to successfully make the transition from high school to higher education, employment, and community programs.
Click to download the Transition Guide
12th Annual Oklahoma Transition Institute
Mark your calendar to attend the 12th Annual Oklahoma Transition Institute (OTI). The event will be held October 3-5, 2017, at the Marriott Conference Center at NCED in Norman. This three-day event is designed for educators, transition counselors, and others supporting youth with disabilities as they transition to life after high school. Register Now!
OSDE High Needs Fund - Is your district struggling to meet the needs of a student who has extensive needs? Did you know that a Local Education Agency (LEA) can apply to the State Department of Education for help meeting its obligations under IDEA 2004? It’s true!
Click to read a recent memo from State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister regarding this fund and how to apply.
Hurry - the deadline to apply is August 18, 2017.
The Oklahoma Chapter of the Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (AER) will hold its annual meeting and professional development conference Aug. 10-11 in Muskogee. Teachers of the Visually Impaired, Orientation & Mobility Specialists, Rehabilitation Specialists and other professionals are invited to attend. Registration is $90 for AER members, and $100 for nonmembers. To register, email Jeanne Meyer - email@example.com
AER membership provides opportunities for professionals working with individuals with visual impairment to connect with colleagues and stay up-to-date on changes within the industry. Sign up at https://aerbvi.org/membership/applications-renewal/