I teach Year 5 students. One of students has dysgraphia, but is a bright boy who wants to participate and learn and for whom "getting things down"... writing or typing is a real handicap. He self esteem is way down low.
An individual stand alone computer has been promised him (surplus from another department) but as time is passing and it is not materialising, I am thinking.. I am wondering whether an Ipad would be a better way to go and hence I'm asking you guys to help me.
While I classify myself as computer literate, I don't have an Ipad and have a few questions you may help me answer. If any of you teach "special needs" or very young children" have you found the touch screen keyboard, easy to navigate and so on, by students. My student struggles with keyboarding. (we do daily keyboarding and the others have left him behind)
I believe that we would have to have some sort of evidence of what he is "doing in class". The rest of the school community still "expects" hard copies of much of the work done. Printing could be a problem as we have a windows enviroment and etc (you would know the issues)
I had a brain wave just now... if my student could type on safari on blog or wiki pages.. then printing wouldn't be an issue, because I'd just print from my printer.
I hope you can get a bit of an idea of what my dilemma is. Perhaps you've been down this road with a student? What did you do? My idea is to actually present the idea to the child's parents and suggest they help with the cost - something I know they could afford and would support if they are assured of the value to their child.
I'd appreciate any thoughts... positives - negatives... Many thanks - Edith.
Why do you think an iPad would be easier to type with than a regular keyboard for this student?
A netbook would be cheaper and probably easier to type on, and it would achieve the same purpose of being able to create work online. Although, that said, I have used an iPad and it is easier to type on than I thought it might be.
Have you thought about something like Google Docs for creating work online. It may be easier to set up and access than a blog and you could set up a document so that you had shared access to it.
If you go the iPad route, I believe apps like Documents to Go will allow you to create MS Office documents and sync them to the desktop of the computer that the iPad is registered to. You can then print them from there.
Thanks for the "google docs" tip. That definitely would be one way to solve printing issues.
Thanks for all your comments. It's a huge thing... to get the best equipment as it is expensive. I want to find the best current technology. I used Dragon Speaking with windows several years ago... then it wasn't the greatest... but your positive comments make me want to revisit. I really appreciate your time..
I'll check out the group shortly, too.