7 Good Chrome Extensions for Students with Dyslexia — from educatorstechnology.com

Excerpt:

In today’s post I am sharing with you this collection of Chrome extensions to help particularly students with dyslexia enhance their reading skills. The tools bring added functionalities to Chrome browser converting it into a clutter free space where students can focus on their reading.  Most of these extensions offer features such as annotations, OCR services, speech to text, special fonts, dictation, and many more.

From DSC:
Here are some other resources that have to do with accessibility and Google as well:

 

The Beginner’s Guide to Web Accessibility — from deque.com

Welcome to the Beginner’s Guide to Accessibility! We’re glad you’re here. This guide is designed to teach you enough about the ins-and-outs of accessibility to get your bearings and to serve as a springboard for deeper investigation into the areas of accessibility that are most relevant to you and your needs.

If you’re completely new to accessibility, we recommend starting at the beginning and reading the sections in order. However, if you aren’t a complete beginner, are pressed for time, or simply prefer to jump around in order of personal interest, each section was written to stand alone as it’s own little module of information.

Table of Contents

  1. Digital Accessibility: What It Is and Why It Matters
  2. How People with Disabilities Use the Web (and Mobile Apps)
  3. Accessibility Compliance: Regulations and Requirements
  4. How Do You Know If You’re Accessible?

Over a billion people have a form of disability, plus lawsuits are up 12% from 2019, plus everyone benefits when sites and learning materials are accessible

 

10 Best Accessibility Tools For Designers — from hongkiat.com by Hongkiat Lim

Excerpt:

Today is the world of inclusive technology – websites, apps, and tech gadgets that are made for people with different kinds of abilities and inabilities. So when you’re designing a website, you include features that make your design accessible to as many people as possible. And this is where accessibility tools come into play.

Instead of creating everything from scratch, here’s a list of cool accessibility tools for designers. From creating color combinations according to WCAG standards to adding different reading modes to your website, these tools are a must-haves for every designer. Take a look at the list to know about each tool in detail.

 

New accessibility features for students and teachers using Chromebooks — from educatorstechnology.com

Excerpt:

After the new Google Meet updates, Google introduced new features in Chromebooks, ones that will definitely enhance the overall usability and accessibility of the device. Starting with the new PIN logins’ feature for education users, students, teachers, and educators will now be able to log in to their assigned devices using a six digit pin code. This new feature will be standard on all new Chromebooks.
Students with special needs will particularly benefit from the introduction of new accessibility features. There is the novel Live Caption functionality which allows students to caption videos. There is also the Switch Access feature which allows users to control their cursor either using the built-in keyboard or through connecting an external USB or Bluetooth.

 

 

Optimizing High-Quality Digital Learning Experiences A Playbook for Faculty — from onlinelearningconsortium.org

 

Optimizing High-Quality Digital Learning Experiences A Playbook for Faculty

Excerpts:

This playbook is a collaboration between the Online Learning Consortium (OLC), the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), and the Every Learner Everywhere Digital Learning Network. This playbook is designed to serve as a concise guide to address faculty needs for online course design, teaching, and continuous improvement.

One strategy that can enhance teaching presence in an online course is to provide audio and video content that can be developed with relative ease using multimedia applications. Creating micro-lectures along with other multimedia is a great option for designing online course content.

Creating your own closed-caption video content, along with video transcripts, is a practical option for communicating course concepts to students. You might also consider providing supplementary written materials or curating content from other sources to help students master course concepts.

 

Apple’s latest accessibility features are for those with limb and vocal differences — from techcrunch.com by Devin Coldewey

Excerpt:

Apple announced a batch of accessibility features at WWDC 2021 that cover a wide variety of needs, among them a few for people who can’t touch or speak to their devices in the ordinary way. With Assistive Touch, Sound Control and other improvements, these folks have new options for interacting with an iPhone or Apple Watch.

 

Planning for a blended future: A research-driven guide for educators — from everylearnereverywhere.org by Every Learner Everywhere in partnership with Online Learning Consortium (OLC) & National Research Center for Distance Education and Technological Advancements (DETA)

Excerpt:

The purpose of this guide
This resource is a collaboration among the National Research Center for Distance Education and Technological Advances (DETA), the Online Learning Consortium (OLC), and the Every Learner Everywhere Network. It is designed to serve as a resource for educators — faculty, instructors, instructional staff, instructional improvement staff, instructional designers, learning experience designers and developers, technological support staff, and other stakeholders — to guide strategic planning for blended learning courses and programs.

Therefore, blended learning is instruction that blends technological, temporal, spatial, and pedagogical dimensions to create actualized learning. Students feel they are successful when they actually learn and that does not always equate to grade and course completion.

Blended learning is instruction that blends technological, temporal, spatial, and pedagogical dimensions to create actualized learning.

KEY IDEAS

  1. Designing courses to meaningfully integrate the different environments and temporal cadence (online and onsite, live and overtime) while incorporating an active learning approach can improve student outcomes in blended and hybrid courses.
  2. Faculty must become guides for students and their engagement by intentionally and strategically using a variety of modalities to scaffold learning.
  3. By designing and scaffolding blended courses effectively, faculty can avoid the common pitfall of course and-a-half-syndrome, which occurs when the online portion of a course is tacked on, creating busywork for students.
 

Technology Made Special Education Parents Better Advocates During the Pandemic — from edsurge.com by Nadia Tamez-Robledo

Excerpt:

Those are lessons that should stay in place long after our current era of remote learning, says research analyst Lane McKittrick, who focuses on special education and families at the Center on Reinventing Public Education. She recently co-authored a report on how charter schools effectively supported students with disabilities during the pandemic and is blogging about the topic.

McKittrick’s disappointment didn’t just come from her role as a researcher. She’s also a mom to four children, three of whom are deafblind.

The schools that most successfully served their special education groups were those that prioritized communication and learning about families’ needs, McKittrick found in her own analysis.

 

 

The Basic Accessibility Fundamentals Bootcamp!
Use this table of contents to jump to specific chapters of the video:

00:00 Introduction
16:24 Inclusion and Accessibility
43:11 What is Digital Accessibility
53:31 Accessibility User Persona
1:04:26 Accessibility Statistics
1:20:53 Accessibility Laws and Legal Landscape
1:44:08 Screen Reader Demo
2:03:32 Accessibility Demographics
2:33:57 Wrap Up Reflection
2:35:19 Q&A

GAAD 2021 Fundamentals Bootcamp Slides.pdf

Transcript

Recommended Accessibility Books:

 

 

Ed Department Sets Expectations For Special Education As Schools Reopen — from disabilityscoop.com by Michelle Diament

Excerpt:

With schools across the nation increasingly eyeing a return to normalcy, federal education officials are further clarifying what that should mean for students with disabilities.

In a 23-page question-and-answer document, the U.S. Department of Education is laying out how the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and other civil rights laws apply as schools return to in-person learning.

The guidance addresses schools’ responsibilities to students with disabilities in remote, hybrid and in-person situations, touching on everything from the right to a free appropriate public education to handling children who are unable to wear masks or maintain social distance.

 

Per Elnaz Sarraf (She/Her), Chief Evangelist at ROYBI Robot:

ROYBI INC, the creator of the award-winning ROYBI Robot, announced today that it was named the winner of the World Economic Forum Smart Toy Awards 2021 in the category of Smart Companion. This is a remarkable achievement!

ROYBI won one of the Smart Toy Awards as presented by the World Economic Forum

The category winner had to meet four important criteria:

  1. Data Privacy & Cybersecurity
  2. Accessibility
  3. Innovative Use of AI Transparency
  4. Healthy Play in Childhood Development.

According to the World Economic Forum representative, Seth Bergeson, our ROYBI Robot met and exceeded these important criteria. ROYBI’s award acceptance ceremony can be watched here.


Also see:

ROYBI provides a sophisticated 1-on-1 private tutoring experience using artificial intelligence. ROYBI Robot introduces kids to technology, math, science, and language arts.

 

You’ll Soon be Able to Use Your Apple Watch Without Touching the Screen — from wsj.com by Katie Deighton
Companies like Apple and Spotify are making it easier for people with disabilities to use their products. Accessibility advocates hope more follow suit

AssistiveTouch, a new feature coming to the Apple Watch, will let users operate the device without having to touch the screen or controls.

AssistiveTouch, a new feature coming to the Apple Watch, will let users operate the device without having to touch the screen or controls. It was designed with people who have upper-body limb differences in mind.

PHOTO: APPLE INC.

Excerpt:

Later this year, Apple Inc. will introduce features that allow users to control an iPad with their eyes, and its smartwatch with gestures like a pinch or a fist clench.

The company announced the moves this week as part of Global Accessibility Awareness Day on May 20, an event established in 2011. Other big tech players revealed initiatives and commitments of their own, from automatic podcast transcriptions by Spotify Technology S.A to the updated design of a specific virtual block in Microsoft Corp.’s “Minecraft” to make it more visible to colorblind players.

 

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is today!
Help us celebrate the tenth Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD)! The purpose of GAAD is to get everyone talking, thinking and learning about digital access and inclusion, and the more than One Billion people with disabilities/impairments.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is is Thursday, May 20th 2021

Also see:

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is Thursday, May 20, 2021

Also see:

Professional Development for Digital Accessibility: A Needs Assessment — from qualitymatters.org

As the EdTech article, “Improving Accessibility for Students and Faculty with Disabilities,” points out, the approach to accommodations for many institutions is still reactive instead of proactive.

So what can institutions do to become more proactive in their approach to digital accessibility? A 2019 survey of Higher Education Quality Matters Coordinators conducted by Barbara Frey, D.Ed., Point Park University, and Rae Mancilla, Ed.D., the University of Pittsburgh, identified the need for more professional development on the topic. Now, in the final white paper from their three-part series on digital accessibility, Drs. Frey and Mancilla provide a summary and analysis of the survey data on digital accessibility professional development needs.

Highlights include:

    • The key training areas that course developers can focus on to help faculty
    • How administrators can address common barriers to participation in digital accessibility training
    • How faculty can contribute to a meaningful accessibility training curriculum

Also see:

 

Thursday, 5/20/21, is Global Accessibility Awareness Day!!!

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is this Thursday, May 20, 2021
Help us celebrate the tenth Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD)! The purpose of GAAD is to get everyone talking, thinking and learning about digital access and inclusion, and the more than One Billion people with disabilities/impairments.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is is Thursday, May 20th 2021

Also see:

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is Thursday, May 20, 2021

 

 

 

7 good apps for learning spelling — from educatorstechnology.com

Excerpt:

We have curated for you this collection of carefully vetted apps to use with your kids, students and anyone else keen on learning and improving their spelling skills. The apps provide guided practice, interactive games, lessons, quizzes, puzzles, and several other materials to make learning spelling a fun and engaging task. We invite you to check them out and share with us if you have other suggestions to add to the list.

From DSC:
If you or someone you know is having significant issues with spelling, you/they may want to do some investigative work around:

Also, Microsoft’s Immersive Reader might come in handy.

 

 
© 2021 | Daniel Christian