ICT and Special Needs

Hi all! Happy holidays …. a clue no. I’m getting the vibe that most of us are not having a nice relaxing holiday, but instead are busy trying to catch up on everything in this course and others.

Today I want to explore the relationship between ICT and special needs. I was inspired to delve into this topic after reading Jackie’s post about connecting with students with special needs. Special education is not one of my majors, but after three practical experiences I am very aware that the needs of students whether it is in the form of Autism, learning disability or a learning preference is something that I need to be thinking about and catering for. ICTs in think can be the tool that bridges these learning needs together, aiding the teacher to employ greater differentiation so that ALL students are catered for.

According to this article:

Some pupils in your class may have problems in accessing the curriculum due to learning difficulties with reading, writing, spelling or numeracy, visual or hearing problems, emotional or behavioural problems.  I.C.T. can, in many cases, help to alleviate the problems.

For example, students who find handwriting difficult can use a keyboard to help them record their work for easily.  Speech to text software is readily available now and has a high rate of accuracy. Students with visual problems can be helped through the use of different coloured screens and fonts; icons and screen menus can be enlarged to suit. Also, software programs often come with facilities whereby teachers can set different levels for each pupil.  This is very useful for those with learning difficulties.  Not only does it mean they are using the same program as their peers but it means they can set themselves targets to work towards.  These programs are bright and attractive and make use of multimedia which appeals to those who need stimulus from more than one sense.  They can be used regularly for reinforcement as often as a child needs in order to grasp the concept.

This video shows what this could look like in a classroom.

Happy studying!



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