“While AT includes a set of federally mandated services and equipment for students with disabilities, the term also refers to valuable tools and strategies for including students with a wide range of learning styles in classroom activities. AT can be a triangular pencil grip, a talking calculator, a larger computer monitor, or a voice amplifier for a teacher with vocal cord strain. All these examples reflect the individual nature of assessing when and how a device will make teaching and learning more effective — as well as the benefits of many kinds of assistive technologies to people without disabilities.” (Wahl, 2003)
I am currently in an educational technology class through the University of Phoenix and found out about a few free web based assistive technology extensions that can be added to your browser for free to help our students with a wide variety of abilities. This week I wanted two of my low visions students to experiment using Scrible when paired with low vision magnification software. In this instance, my students were pairing Scrible with ZoomText in order access a research project on the Missouri State Fair for their social studies class.
How Scribble Works For the Typically Sighted Student:
For more information, go to the Scrible website.
The Scribble Extension looks a bit like the photo presented below when the typical user or when a user with typical vision is using it within a website. Users can take highlight parts of texts, make notes for key parts with a notepad feature.
Photo 1: Notepad with Scrible and highlight
One of the best and most interactive features about Scrible is that it lets students collaborate with teachers and their peers through “Share it” feature where they can share their notes and key parts of their readings via Email, Twitter or Facebook.
Photo 2: Sharing options of Scrible Tool Bar
How Scribble Works with ZoomText
Please note the Magnification level on ZoomText can be increased to 12x not just 2.5x. You can view the demo in the folowing link: https://youtu.be/0lh5k8JdVkM
The bottom line: Using Scrible and ZoomText together works best for students that need a moderate amount of low vision magnification and are indepedent in their ZoomText Skills. It is best to teach ZoomText integration with other educational technology after students are more advanced in their skill level. For the students that needed the note taking features of Scrible and the magnification features of Zoomtext, the two applications seemed to work quite smoothly together.