Category Archives: Assistive Technology

Volunteers and Presenters Needed at GATE Conference

Hello Everyone! 

Please see the message below from Debbie Brineman (OI Teacher in Cherokee County) regarding the need for volunteers and presenters at the GATE Conference in December. 

Thank you Debbie for sharing this information!

-Judy

We are looking for volunteers for the GATE conference scheduled for December 8th at GA Tech.

Volunteers are needed for:
Registration table- there by 7:30am
T-shirt table handout table- there by 7:30am
At end of each session checking on vendor refreshments
Room proctors-
GATE talk sessions proctors (Nationally known speaker sessions)
Technology support staff to assist the GA Tech Technology team

You still will get credit for attending if needing CEUs.

If interested please fill out the volunteer form by clicking below.

Please complete by Friday, October 27th.

FILL OUT FORM

Presenters are still needed- if any OI teachers would like to present- please let me know.

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Blog Updates and Future Meetings

Hello Everyone!

Our consortium is continuing to grow and prosper this year as a result of all the hard work our members are doing across the state. I have been able to make additional contacts for us in California, through the California Association for Physical and Health Impairments (CAPHI). CAPHI is another great resource that is available to us as OI teachers. They hold a conference every two years in different locations in California and are hosting webinars for OI Teachers through the Council for Exceptional Children. I highly recommend that you look into CAPHI and what they offer as they are a very large organization for OI Teachers in California. It’s great to see what other organizations, similar to ours, are doing to promote our field and support our teachers and students. You can visit their Facebook Page at:

https://www.facebook.com/caphionline

You can also visit their website at:

http://www.caphi.org/

Also,

I have added several new links that were provided at the recent GATE conference on December 5, 2014 in the links section, under the Assistive Technology section. The link to the GATE wikispaces site provides all of the information that was given by the presenters. If you were not able to attend this conference, the link will provide you with a chance to see what was presented as well as all of the materials that were given to the participants. I also have included links to two of the presentations that I attended, Tips and Tricks for OI Teachers by Renee Dawson, Debbie Brineman, and Jim Whitley of Cherokee County, and a presentation by Lee Green of the Floyd County School System on FREE Google apps and extensions that would be of great use to us. Lee is also the co-leader of the Google + Georgia Educators Group. This is a great AT resource utilizing Google supported apps and extensions that are incredibly useful to us as OI teachers. The GEG is a great networking opportunity and hosts meetings as well for further collaboration.

Please check out these new links! I have also provided links regarding these presentations under the useful apps tab.

Additionally, don’t forget to visit the Georgia Tools for Life website, their link is provided as well. They presented on many topics including accessing funding for AT, and other resources that are useful to us such as new AT equipment and resources that are now available. Their website includes all of the presentations that they gave at the conference, as well as an archive for all of their webinars.

Lastly, I have included a link to Parent 2 Parent of Georgia in the links section. This is a great organization that provides free resources and training to parents, students, and teachers of children with disabilities, across all age ranges and disability areas.

A quick re-cap of our remaining meetings for 2015:

January 14, 2015:

A panel discussion/seminar at the Scottish Rite campus for Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta regarding various disabilities and their educational implications for students within the school environment. The program information will be provided very soon!

March 19, 2015:

Susan Ruediger of the Charcot-Marie Tooth Association will be presenting information and resources regarding CMT, a peripheral nerve disorder that affects at least 2.8 million people world wide, and hundreds of thousands of people here in Georgia. We will also be given a re-delivery of the GATE presentation by Renee Dawson, Debbie Brineman, and Jim Whitley of the Cherokee County School System on useful apps and Google extensions. The location is to be determined.

Here is the link to the Charcot-Marie-Tooth Association for more information on CMT:

http://www.cmtausa.org/

May 14, 2014

Kyle Pease, of the Kyle Pease Foundation, will be presenting at Georgia State for our May meeting. He will cover various topics, including the mission and resources available through the foundation.

Here is the link to the Kyle Pease Foundation for more information:

http://www.kylepeasefoundation.org/

Thank you for reading this long blog post, and I hope the information provided is useful.

Meeting Minutes May 2014

Physical and Health Disabilities (OI) Consortium Meeting

Judy Bytheway, Renee Dawson and Eva Parks

May 15, 2014

Topics discussed:

The group is considering teleconferencing, skyping, satellite meetings, webinars for increased participation

Judy is exploring more advanced web page access

On site meetings can be alternating districts hosting

PLUs can be provided with descriptions and agendas given to the State Dept. 3 weeks ahead of time, etc.

The same Consortium in California does a bi-annual conference with speakers

They pay dues (around $25/annually)

Tour – Tools for Life

June 2 – 5 = IDEAS and Tools for Life Conference

Lots of Resources and PLUs

Tools for Life has Webinars the last Wednesday of every month (see website) –

Sign up to have notices sent to your email

Tools for Life has a loaning library, which gives people a chance to try out solutions for AT, seating, positioning, etc.

Demonstrations given:

Laser keyboard – is a like regular keyboard (runs a little below $200 around $179 on Brookstone)

Good to use with mobile tablets, Iphone, laptop, whatever has Bluetooth capability

Google Glass (costs $1500) – Phone compatible device

Pair of glasses with a display in front of your eyes

Built in voice recognition

With the Command “OK Glass”:

It brings up a list of commands you can scroll through by tipping your head up and down

When you wink it will take a picture

Anything you can do on your phone you can do with Google Glass – make calls, texts, etc.

It also has a swipe pad on the side you can use if voice recognition is not identifying, or can use

If you have low vision in your right eye, this would not be a useful tool

 AMAC is a membership program

For 8-12 individuals no fee, but if you need services there is a fee for services

Tools for Life does the AT evals for AMAC

You get a written comprehensive report (eval is $450 plus travel)

No fee for demonstration or loan for equipment, or calls to brainstorm (can also answer through Skype)

AMAC – has school memberships

Online systems, Apps for accessible textbooks (free 4 students)

And Wiki automated emails and can do support calls

Captioning Dept. – provides remote captioning mostly for college classrooms

Books over internet wherever the lecture is (have done in Guam!)

Students can use laptop, IPAD, phones and provide notes to the student

This dept. has captioned some videos and movies

Audio Descriptions  – which describes actions in a movie for the Blind, and can read subtitles as well.

AMAC = postsecondary primarily – corporate and nonprofit

Serves colleges all over the US

Contacts disability services and the colleges as needed – paid and unpaid memberships, which include lots of access to technology

Individual services are available through Tools for Life

AMAC website= menu at right – frequently asked questions – WIKI – teachers can go through with students

All colleges in Georgia and many around the country are members (see list on website)

Paul – Access Text which is under the AMAC umbrella

Electronic access portals for most textbook publishers

Telepresence Robotics:   Students can come to the site to try

–       VGO $5,000 uses Cloud technology and can move around a room like a person, has a camera

–       KUBI  $499 – which is a tabletop robotic (can be used with Skype)

–       Nano Robot – new and coming to TFL

Electronic Accessibility – uses optimal characteristic software – makes electronic files that are accessible

–       Similar to what Bookshare and GIMC offer

Follow Up from May 2014 Meeting

Hello Everyone!

Firstly, I just wanted to give a big THANK YOU to everyone for attending and hosting the meetings. I felt that we had a great year, and next year will be even better. I am hoping that our consortium grows immensely over the next year so that we can support more teachers around the State.

I also wanted to pass this information along…The Kyle Pease Foundation is hosting a camp for children and adults (ages 3-30) who have cerebral palsy. Please forward this information to your students’ parents. I have attached the event flyer.

Camp Wheel Away Flyer
Kyle Pease will be presenting at our May 14th, 2015 consortium meeting which will be held at Georgia State. He will share information about his foundation whose primary goal is to provide adaptive sports equipment to persons with disabilities. You don’t want to miss meeting Kyle, he is an amazing person! Dr. Paul Alberto, who is now the Dean of the College of Education, helped reserve a room for us at Georgia State. We are lucky to have his support in this way. I will give more information in the fall about all of the meetings and locations.

Here is the link to his foundation website:

http://www.kylepeasefoundation.org/

***I have also attached the meeting minutes from our last meeting at Tools for Life. The tour was incredibly interesting and beneficial. Thank you to the staff of Tools for Life for opening your doors to us! We are looking forward to working with you in the future. The meeting minutes are posted in the blog post above. Thanks to Mary Wright for taking such thorough notes!

I will be updating the blog next week, so don’t forget to follow it…There is a tab that says “Follow” at the very bottom of the page, you just need to scroll all the way down to find it. If you are following the blog, then you will be able to receive e-mail updates regarding new information, events, etc. You may want to receive updates to your personal e-mail address so that you can stay up to date over the summer.

The link to our blog is:

https://georgiaoiteachers.wordpress.com/

Lastly, I am working on planning our meetings in advance over the summer, in hopes that I can submit our plans to the State Department of Education for approval to receive PLU credits for our meetings. If you are able to attend all of the meetings, then you will be able to gain 12 contact hours which would hopefully provide one PLU for the year plus 2 additional contact hours. It is my understanding that we will need to begin accumulating PLU’s again in 2015. This is still in the works, so I will keep everyone updated. If you have any recommendations for meeting topics please let me know. Next year is going to be a great year!

Have a great summer.

Judy

Tongue Drive System at Georgia Tech

Please read this article concerning the Tongue Drive System research going on at Georgia Tech. Share your thoughts!

TDS GA Tech

Shepherd Center Tour!

Hi Everyone!

I hope that your holiday season has gotten off to a great start, and I hope your school year has been successful so far!

I am pleased to announce that we have been granted a tour (with just our group) of the Shepherd Center on Thursday May, 10 2012 at 1:00 p.m. Please go ahead and mark your calendar so that you can be sure to attend! The tour will last approximately one hour, so we will need to find a place to meet up for the remaining meeting time that day. Any ideas are welcome!

Also, if you have come across any new ideas, technology, or just interesting topics, please e-mail so that I can post them, or make a post on your own! 🙂

Lastly, is there anyone using the TOBII eye-gaze technology in their classrooms? If so, can you let me know how it’s going, and what your experience has been so far?

Here is the website to the TOBII technology:

http://www.tobii.com/

Also, I have found this AT forum that can be quite useful:

http://abilitynet.wetpaint.com/forum/General+Discussion

Please join the conversation by responding to this post!

Thanks so much,

Judy Bytheway