Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Dyslexia: What are the advantages of tablet computers?

Unlike desktop computers, tablet computers, such as the iPad (and iPhones) are lightweight, portable, and kid-sized. 

The long battery life means they can be used at home, in school, in trains, planes, and automobiles—literally any place where one can sit down.

iPads start instantly and can be closed in the middle of an activity at a moment’s notice.

Most apps are reasonably priced, and range from free to about $25, although some specialty apps (e.g., for Speech and Language Pathologists) can be quite expensive.

What should you look for in a good app?
A good app is educationally sound, versatile, and worth the price.

Here are a few other considerations;
  • Intended user: Is the app meant for students to use independently or with a teacher or parent? Teacher-utility apps are meant for teachers to use in planning or delivering instruction.
  • Breadth and depth: Is the content accurate and research-based? Are activities varied, with multiple levels of complexity? Is there scaffolding to support learners of different abilities?
  • User-friendliness: Is it intuitive? Can the user move easily between tasks? How do teacher-utility apps improve teaching quality or save time and effort? Are oral or written instructions readily available? Do web-links enhance the content?
  • Images and sound: Are the illustrations, graphics and sound attractive and engaging? Do they enhance content, or detract from it?
  • Feedback: Is the feedback timely, specific, and motivating? Is feedback delivered at multiple levels?
  • Engaging: Do the activities promote involvement? Are there motivating goals and attractive rewards? Are activities interactive and challenging and do they involve problem solving? Are student apps fun and enjoyable, compelling students to want to use them again and again?
Click Here to see a list of some worthwhile apps to consider

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