WYNN is innovative software designed to aid individuals to read and write more effectively. WYNN was developed with the help of special educators and individuals with learning difficulties. SpeechViewer III is a powerful speech and language tool that transforms spoken words and sounds into imaginative graphics. SpeechViewer III increases the effectiveness of speech therapy and speech modification for people who have speech, language or hearing impairments. Voice recognition software is excellent, however even some very talkative people may find it hard to speak 2000 words clearly.
People with learning difficulties are often people who find it hard to concentrate over large periods of time. Different methods of teaching can be useful and more effective than always writing down sentences and phrases in a book. By using a computer and typing, the person would have to find the letter first on the keyboard; this would be good practice recognising the letters as well as being enjoyable for them. There are many different types of software helping the student link words and phrases making sentences and forming paragraphs.
With learning, speaking is also as important as writing. There are such programmes that read out the words written on the computer, this can help them understand what they’ve written and be useful, as it will read out their mistakes. Dyslexics may find the following skills difficult: Auditory discrimination Left and right Maths coputation Memory Organisation Pronunciation, particularly words of three or more syllables Reading Sequencing Spelling Visual discrimination.
For people with dyslexia a range of software and hardware now exists to help learners to organise their thoughts, develop their memory skills, expand their creative writing and produce work, which reflects their ability. However, as with other strategies, software needs to be chosen with care to suit people with certain abilities. This outstanding multimedia package supports development of number skills over a range of levels. Using a multi-sensory approach, it adds meaning and understanding to these operations as a way of helping to improve basic numeracy.
It addresses many of the difficulties, which lead students to dislike maths, including poor short-term memory, attention span and sequencing skills. It is approximately i?? 50 – i?? 300 depending on which software is compatible with your computer. Language Difficulties: Speech and language difficulties cover a wide range of need, from individuals who find it hard to articulate, through those with problems understanding or expressing language, to those who do not speak at all.
For many learners with speech and language difficulties, the development of both spoken and written language is a challenge. Here we explore ways in which ICT can support this full range of skills. For some learners with speech and language difficulties, ICT is a lifeline, enabling them to communicate with the world around them. For others, it can support their classroom work and therapy. Text messaging has obvious uses for people with speech difficulties, it is easier for them to text, spelling the words than them speaking out the words.
The ability to generate text without a standard keyboard has also proven advantageous. When a person with language difficulties is learning to read and write English it can be very hard especially with just one learning method. ICT can be a different way to approach and teach people for whom English is not their first language. There are a number of technologies that are of particular use when helping people with speech and language difficulties, these are: Overlay keyboards and software making use of these. Switch reproduction and synthesis. Switch technology.
Word processors, including predictive word processors. Digitised speech Today, many computers have a digitised speech facility. Learners can record messages and incorporate them into their work on the computer. A picture, accompanied by a spoken message from the child or a record of a journey provided through a mixture of text and sound, enables the pupil to practise and develop their speech. There is specialist software available to help students to understand language structures (for example, final consonants or consonant clusters) or single sounds.
Also, there is software available that allows students to see their speech patterns or vocalisations represented on the screen. This can be used in speech therapy to reinforce work on particular sounds. Talking books enable pupils to learn and practise different spoken language structures, often providing a chance to work more independently. They can work well with children who are unresponsive and who avoid conversation, as they become involved with the combination of sound effects, spoken text and visual display. Word processors
Word processors with banks of words and phrases can be used to support structured language activities. Predictive word processors are particularly helpful for students having physical disabilities as well as speech and language difficulties, as the next word or phrase is ‘predicted’, often saving effort and time. Vocabulary, spelling and grammar programs Software packages are available to assist in targeting vocabulary, grammatical structures (such as negation, plural, past tense and syntax) and various comprehension skills.
There are, also, ‘drill and practice’ spelling programs, which are carefully structured, grouping particular sounds and providing reinforcement. Examples are Starspell, Spellit 3 and Wordshark. The price of this software is approximately i?? 60+. Literary assistance software Literary assistance software helps with particular styles of writing. An example of this type of software is Inclusive Writer, developed by Widgit Software and Inclusive Technology. The program comes with different literacy activities on the CD – for example story starters, and rhyming words – and also provides images and symbols.
Multiple Disabilities For people with multiple disabilities computers can be a tool for play and communication. Webcams are useful for disabled people who are not able to go out and visit people and another advantage of this is that they are relatively cheap. ICT can greatly help those people with more than one disability. For example if someone was partially blind and had limited mobility, the use of ICT can be both practical for educational purposes along with entertainment and leisure purposes.
ICT offer both challenges and encouragement for people willing to learn. Computers on the whole are valuable and helpful. They have become important for people with disabilities. Their flexibility allows adaptations to be made easily to meet different needs, making them easier to use. Another great thing about computers is that they are very affordable nowadays, and even with additional software it is reasonable, including the Internet, this is a big impact on the carers or parents who look after the disabled person.
An immense disadvantage of computers is that it is possible to crash at any time. This will be an even bigger disadvantage for people who have more than one disability than for people who have just one because they are much more reliant on computers. Also they will find it difficult to fix it if they are in a wheelchair and have language difficulties to repair the computer than if someone just had limited mobility with a broken leg.