Irlen Awareness Week Oct 20-24

Do you become distress with bright lights, black print on white paper, experience visual fatigue or experience print that does not remain stable?

Irlen distorsions

These are just a few of the symptoms of Irlen Syndrome. Find out more during the Irlen Syndrome Awareness week…

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For more information visit Irlen Website.  More information to come this week.

And yes, there are some apps that can help with that!

Carol Leynse Harpold, MS AdEd, OTR/L, ATP , Irlen Screener or

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Abilipad App Price Reduction!

Abilipad icon

Abilipad App

Abilipad app  (iPad; regularly 19.99) is reduced to 9.99 today (always a mystery how long this reduced price will be!). This app provides tools to customization the keyboard layout with pictures, text, key size and color. Other options available to support reading and writing includes word prediction, text to speech and ability to create a writing environment with those features. It is a great app for customizing the writing environment.

Abilipad pic 2

Abilipad pic

Great app to have in your app arsenal to support writing!

More for your OT mTool kit!



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WordToob App

light bulb-29050_640 - Pixabay

Do you ever stumble upon an app and think ” that is really cool” but the light bulb just doesn’t go on for application of it (or may be you don’t have an immediate application) ??

Wordtoob iconWordToob app (iPad; 19.99 for iOS 5.1 or later) was one of those apps. I have had it on my iPad for quite sometime but just didn’t quite see the application – maybe I was blinded by the light????

I have the opportunity of working with a great school team supporting a student with special needs. The team created videos of the many activities the student participates (dozens! Kudos to Erin and Jodi and the rest of the team!). This has helped guide the student with the activity. It has worked well to feed forward the expectations of the activity. A significant amount of research supports use of video modeling as  evidence based practice  intervention for a wide variety of individuals. Using WordToob app provides the vehicle for displaying all those video models in an organized method for easy access for the student or staff.

Wordtoob pic 1 Wordtoob pic2

John Halloran, developer of WordToob app, provides an overview of the many uses of WordToob. Although a lengthy video, the video below gives you ideas of the many applications of its use.

Video modeling ideas with use of WordToob, as described on iTunes:

• Learning social skills
• Recognizing emotions
• Visual schedules
• Learning adaptive skills
• Show and tell, storytelling

There are many more ways to use WordToob:

  • Learning new words
  • Recognizing words you hear
  • Improving articulation
  • ELL

For more information check out WordToob on their website. A number of videos in YouTube are available for ideas and instruction in its use.

Creating albums of videos certainly works on the iPad, however, WordToob app provides an easy method of titling videos and access for both student and staff. Although a bit expensive, WordToob has multiple uses beyond just presenting and organizing videos. Games, word work and visual schedules are just a few methods WordToob can be used.

As I now see the light, I am glad its on a little brighter! I am looking forward to adding this to the arsenal of apps used to support individuals with disabilities – whether at school or in work settings!

More for your teaching, PT or OT mTool Kit!



National Professional Development Center, on Autism Spectrum Disorders. “Evidence Base for Video Model.” Evidence Base for Video Modeling (n.d.): n. pag. National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder. Web. 17 Oct. 2014.

Posted in App Reviews, Apps for OT's, Assistive Technology, Augmentative Communication, Autism, Choice Making app, Communicaton, Customizable app, Education, iOS, iPad, Occupational Therapy, School Based Interventions, Self Care, Special Education Teacher, Special Needs, Story Telling, Therapist/Teacher Tools, Video Modeling | Leave a comment

Ten Chrome Extensions for Accessibility and Universal Design for Learning

Carol Leynse Harpold, MS, AdEd, OTR/L, ATP:

Luis Perez shares his insight on the ever-growing extensions available for Chrome. Extensions shared are helpful for a wide variety of individuals with disability including Blind, Low Vision, LD and more.
Luis’s expertise is always worth checking out!

Originally posted on The Website of Luis Perez:

Although I am primarily a Safari user, I have been very impressed with the variety of extensions you can add to customize the Chrome web browser from Google. I have been experimenting with a number of these extensions, and here are the ones I have found helpful and currently have installed:

  • ChromeVox: Google’s screen reader that is built into Chrome OS on Chromebooks or can be installed as an extension for the Chrome browser on Windows or Mac. A really nice interactive tutorial is available from Google to help new users get started with ChromeVox.
  • ChromeSpeak: This extension provides the same functionality that is available through a Speech service on the Mac but should be helpful to  Chrome OS users. You can select text on any web page, right-click and choose Speak to have the text read aloud using the text to speech engine built into the respective OS.

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Flip Writer AAC | Two Displays

Flip Writer lets you type a message on the keyboard, and this message is displayed on two displays,






Source: As Scooped from:

AT Daily reviews Flip Writer app. Free, with in-app purchase for word prediction, provides a flipped display for a communication partner. Wow, I remember when these types of devices were specialized and quite expensive .  Flip Writer AAC is developed by the creators of Spell Better.

If you need a text based communication device, check this out.


See on Scoop.itOT mTool Kit

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Third Party Keyboards

Carol Leynse Harpold, MS, AdEd, OTR/L, ATP:

Luis Perez keeps us all up to date with iOS accessibility options. In this blog post reblogged from the Website of Luis Perez, he share step by step how to use third party keyboards. It is really easy, and his quick video guides you through the process of using and customizing the keyboards. Many thanks to Luis Perez for sharing his expertise!

Originally posted on The Website of Luis Perez:

One of the most anticipated features in iOS 8 was the redesigned on-screen keyboard. Recently, I did a video on my YouTube channel on the new QuickType feature that now provides smart word prediction with the iOS onscreen keyboard. That video also discussed two other additions: the Dictation feature now has almost real-time feedback, and you can customize the on-screen keyboard by adding a number of third-party keyboards to your iOS device. In the video I featured two of my favorite third-party keyboards: Swype and Fleksy (both $.99 on the App Store).

With Fleksy,  I like the extra feedback I get as I type (the letters appear to jump out) and the fact that you can customize the keyboard by choosing large keys and adjusting the colors to a combination that works well for you. Typing is also very quick with this keyboard. Whenever you need to enter a space, just do a…

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Quick Tip: Siri and Speak Screen

Carol Leynse Harpold, MS, AdEd, OTR/L, ATP:

Luis Perez is an expert at iOS accessibility. He provides some suggestions for the new iOS 8 , Siri and Speak Screen as re-blogged from his blog post.

Originally posted on The Website of Luis Perez:

New in iOS 8, Speak Screen allows you to hear not only text but also interface elements such as buttons and other controls read aloud. Speak Screen is a handy feature to use on websites, ebooks and anywhere you need to have the text read aloud to you, or if you need to familiarize yourself with a layout of an app due to a vision difficulty.  The nice thing about this feature is that you don’t have to make a selection first. Speak Screen begins reading at the top of the page automatically after you activate it but you can use onscreen controls to advance the selection or to rewind, and you can also adjust the speaking speed. Also, Speak Screen will work with any of the voices you have installed on your device, including the advanced Alex voice Apple has now ported from the Mac to iOS with iOS 8.

Speak screen popover menu with options for navigation and controlling the speaking rate.


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