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Educating Children with Special Needs by Using Technology
Education has evolved over the years and the present approaches to teaching involve technology as part of the interactive process. In teaching children with special needs, technology is used and it is seen to give extraordinary results. Institutes that are offering the special needs education course are also including the topic of teaching differently abled children with technology in their curriculum. If you are a teacher, you can use mobile and computer applications to teach children and we will be discussing some of them here.
Usage of Applications as Part of the Teaching Process
- Applications for Pads / Tablets
Apart from the general purpose slideshows, there are many applications for iPads and iPod. For students with special needs, touch pads do a great job for personalized studies. There are many applications for writing, art, math, etc. and these are truly life-changing for the special needs students.
Apart from the primary schools, there are apps for middle and high school students too that can help make learning engaging and interactive and engaging. Some of the apps that students might like are ‘Alien Equation’ which teaches math through fun games, ‘The Elements’ which assists in the exploration of the Periodic table, etc.
Every day there are more and more educational apps appearing to help differently-abled students learn many topics. These applications are also making the teaching process easier. However, before downloading you must check out reviews and see if teachers have put their stamp of approval on.
- Application for Phones
There are many applications for phones as well that can benefit learning by imparting study skills and time management. Some of these are:
- Camera Apps
Photos can serve as a useful visual reminder of what has been taught and what one needs to accomplish. Though all children who require special needs will not be able to use smartphones or camera apps to click photos. However, some of them can. If parents are allowed in classroom or study sessions, they also can take advantage of these apps. One can use the camera app to take photos of the blackboard after class so that he doesn’t miss important notes or assignments. But as a teacher, you have to set out rules so that the clicking of pictures take place in an organized manner. The special needs education course guides teachers in managing these types of activities effectively.
- Text Messaging
SMS or online messaging platforms can help tremendously to document assignments or forward study materials or examination schedules. There are lots of SMS and Messenger apps and we are not going into the details. You can use these apps to prepare to-do lists as well. Apart from teaching, even when you are taking up the special needs education course, you can use these apps for your convenience.
Students or the parents of students will be able to receive notes and flashcards directly to their phone and stay updated. Moreover, apart from students with special needs, these apps can be used to teach non-disabled students as well.
- Adaptive Technologies
Nowadays, adaptive computing technology has been introduced which allows devices to ease out difficult tasks. As an example, we can cite JAWS, an application which includes Braille keyboards to allow visually challenged students access computers. There is also augmentative communication technology which helps students with speech problems overcome the barrier of communication. These systems use books, picture charts and computers to provide word prediction for effective communication.
There are tons of other technologies too that can help children with special needs. Add to that the guidance of a teacher helps in enriching the learning experience. So, as a teacher, it is important to take up the special needs education course from a teachers training institute. Here, you will learn what technologies to use and how to use them in classrooms. The course also gives a scope of finding out new applications to help in teaching students in special schools.