Tools to try in 2015: ActiveInspire
Here are a few more tools to try in ActivInspire software which support accommodating and differentiating student learning in the classroom.
Containers allow for spaces on the ActiveInspire flipchart page to be pre-programmed to accept certain objects and reject others. (Accepted objects can even be accompanied by a reward sound.) Creating containers on a flipchart page not only makes an activity fun, engaging and provides students with instant feedback but supports students with fine motor challenges. Incorrect answers bounce out of the wrong container, eliminating a step for the student to move an object out of a certain area. The reward sound is instant feedback so the student in not required to interact with more objects to be place on the page (like hidden hints or pull tags) but still support student independence and self checking. See how to create containers in the video: Creating Containers to Engage students with ASD and Developmental Disabilities Part 1
Every object on the page has its own set of marquee handle icons which indicate how the object can be changed and manipulated. For some students interacting with the object is accompanied with too many distracting icons. The default standard set-up of marquee handles includes the ability to rotate and resize the objects, which can be challenging and frustrating to some students as they attempt to show their learning, but the object moves and resizes in a way that distracts from their solution.To support even one student that encounters this challenge, the marquee handles can be customized to provide as many or as few options to be used on an object. Each students' profile can be quickly saved so that each time they are at the board the objects' setting are appropriate for him/her.
Customizing the Marquee handles to support students with fine motor challenges
Using Restrictors supports students with fine motor difficulties as objects' motions can be restricted to move only in a particular direction. Movement of objects can also be controlled by blocking the actions of objects to move up to, but not past, certain areas on a page. See our video Using Restrictors to Support Fine Motor challenges.to see how restricting objects' movements in a lesson or activity can reduce students' frustration and allowing students to demonstrate their understanding. (There's also a second video that shows that along with restricting movement, the resizing or the distortion of size of an object can also be prevented.)
For more information and examples of ways to use ActivInspire to meet the needs of exceptional learners visit our Teach and Special Ed YouTube channel.