Monday, August 27, 2012

Technology Set Up

Recently another Mum asked for some photos of our technology set-up in the classroom. So I have managed to do a short video in the classroom of Missy using her technology. I will attempt to break it down bit by bit. Missy is using direct access with a 40hole keyguard on her Dynavox V-Max, which is sending by infrared (using an Access It)words/number etc to the Laptop which is showing a scanned copy of the worksheet the class is working on. We use PDF Converter Professional to provide a platform to make scanned work, interactive by having text boxes and the like in the right place for answers and ease of tabbing thru questions, also writing some notes on the scanned copy showing on the laptop. Also on this video Missy is showing Text Help Read & Write Gold software that offers word prediction (amongst other features)in the blue box on the laptop, so she can shortcut words by pressing an "F button" for the word she sees instead of typing it completely.
Missy's I-Pad is not showing in the video but it is also mounted to the side of the Dynavox on the steel bar. It used for a number of visual aids, photos are taken of the teachers board which may have the instructions or key words for  writing activities, so that they can be close and at the same eye focus range, these shortcuts can help with fatigue and focus. The I-Pad is also used as an ideas chalkboard, so for a writing piece she would pick her key words or story line on the Dynavox , it's hand written on  the chalkboard app and Missy will write her story on the Dynavox but be able to stay focused on her ideas.
We use the set-up for some Maths work also, workings can be done on I-pad and entering answers on the Laptop via the Dynavox. Allot of photos are also taken of references materials(ie. Time tables) that may be around the room, so Missy then has a reference bank that is acccesibile for her with a swipe. We are lucky to have a teachers aid who is techno savy and can quickly make teachers spontaneous activities accessibility.
During meals and playground time in the school grounds Missy uses a Lingo, (lower tech) small device with eight buttons, pre-recorded voice output, for quick easy questions or news, it has some velcro on the back and can be put on the table or her pommel.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Masterchef - Meeting a Star

I know it's on the side but I tried everything and it appears portrait on my computer until you post it somewhere - anyway with the portability of devices these days shouldn't be hard to spin your device.
Missy has been obsessed with the Masterchef TV series, so when she heard about cooking classes for kids with Kate Bracks on the radio travelling to school one day, she couldn't sign fast enough that she wanted to be a part of that.
So with phone call or two to confirm access (of course) she was booked in. Missy had a chat with Kate before her class came in and she had a lovely time cooking some yummy goodies. She couldn't wait to get back to school and tell her friends about and just this week at Book Week(themed Champions), Missy went as Kate (2011 Masterchef winner).

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Ukulele

Over the years the music curriculum at school has been challenging for Missy with recorder and wind like instruments being nearly impossible.
So Missy was excited to have Ukulele this year with the bonus of being able to choose pink. Of course the best thing about Ukulele for Missy is that it doesn't require her mouth, so she can sing along in her loudest voice, while strumming the Ukulele - although sometimes she is so consumed with singing she  forgets to strum. Miss H plays the cords, while Missy strums and the duo will be part of the Stage 3 Eisteddfod next month.