One of the options which teachers can benefit from is the use of technologies in the classroom.
It is largely known that everybody likes playing games and it is not a new idea to educate using games in the classroom. There are several tools which teachers can use in their everyday practice to engage students’ attentiveness and willingness to learn. Using games and various Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 tools makes learning seem fun to children. Technologies can be used as supportive tools to teach SEN students, too. Here is a list of useful Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 tools which can be applied according to specific situations and educational aims.
- text2speech, voki, WordTalk – These tools can help students with dyslexia and other learning difficulties. The applications are used to transform written text into speech.
- http://www.text2speech.org/ is a free application which produces voice and can be applied in English and Indian for texts which are no longer than 4000 characters.
- http://www.voki.com/ is a web tool which allows you to make a presentation and generate voice which you can add to your presentation. The tool offers a free trial period and a basic version. The other versions are available upon some fees.
- http://www.wordtalk.org.uk/home/ is a free machine which can be used with more than one device and is designed to generate voice. However, the last two engines generate English language voice. The following application however, offers more languages : http://espeak.sourceforge.net/languages.html
- Storytelling: Comicmaster, Pixton, Smilebox – These apps can help children to develop their artistic skills and produce comic strips and tell stories. The apps are not especially designed for students with SEN, however, these web tools can work well to develop children’s autonomous learning.
These three apps can be used by teachers and students to create their own stories and tell them in class. Teachers could use them to make presentation and make the lessons more interesting and students can use them to do some project work assigned to develop their creative skills. Students can develop their fine motor skills. Colours and forms can well activate children’s imagination, creativity, and work for their self-confidence.
- The following apps are designed for Photo and image editing – GoAnimate; Glogster; BeFunky.
These could be used to generate materials to use in and out of class and support students, including SEN students, with visual materials.
These are simulation games and virtual worlds which can also be exploited. Second Life is one to mention. Avatars and scenarios can be created there and teachers have to build the games. (http://secondlife.com/?campaignid=290832150&adgroupid=29556767910&loc_physical_ms=1001467&placement=&keyword=play%2520%252Bsecond%2520%252Blife&matchtype=b&creative=100838268510&utmsource=Google&creativeid=T002084&gclid=Cj0KEQjwxPbHBRCdxJLF3qen3dYBEiQAMRyxS1rrOckIo3GTpl0VFFQID0dOPHF7zr-H-Yn2V0swGgQaAmwy8P8HAQ)