Learning through technology
Technology Assisted Learning (TAL) helps to improve the capabilities of many children with disabilities and developmental challenges. Our small team of specialists tailor technology tools to develop programmes to meet individual needs and interests. Our Technology Assisted Learning programme has demonstrated efficacy in increasing a child's self reliance and sense of independence, which helps to alleviate barriers to communication and learning.
This vital and successful programme attracts no government funding support and is delivered each year through the generosity of our community.
You can help us to provide our Technology Assisted Learning programme. through your donation. Fraser's story illustrates how one of our Champion Centre graduates was first introduced to the Technology Assisted Learning programme, and the significant impact it had.
No one was entirely sure what 4 yr old Fraser could see and hear. They knew there was nothing structurally wrong with his eyes, but he did not seem to be using them to discover and learn about his world, and because his disability meant he could not tell others what he understood they had to be detectives to work out how to connect with Fraser and encourage him to engage with the world around him.
When Fraser first started in the Technology Assisted Learning programme, one thing the team did know was that he loved to watch a video called 'Hooray for Fish' on his iPad at home. So the team decided to use this to try to enter Fraser's world. They downloaded the video, cut it up into segments and put each segment into a different PowerPoint slide. Then they set up the transitions into the slide show so that Fraser would have to touch the screen to make the next slide come up. He watched the first part of the video as usual, with avid attention, but then it stopped! He showed his surprise, then his mother gently took his hand and touched it to the screen, so the video started again. After a few goes, he 'got it'. He could make the next section of the video come up by touching the screen. He learned the beginnings of cause and effect. A huge positive milestone for Fraser!
From there, Fraser moved on to using other programmes with clear moving figures on a black background. He learned how to touch a screen that was empty in order to make a picture he liked appear, and increase his ability to track images that move across the screen. he then began to follow the pictures in a book his mother read to him. Over time, Fraser's team and family learned more and more about what he could process and how to extend his abilities.
Little by little, Fraser learned that his eyes gave him the information he wanted and actively began to seek out information on the computer, either by touching the screen or pressing a large switch that is the first step towards using a computer mouse.
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