Bridges News — AAC

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Bridges LIVE! Newmarket 0

blive kitchener collageWe've confirmed our next Bridges LIVE! event will be in Newmarket, Ontario.  Bridges LIVE! is an interactive, hands-on day of trying technology and curricula for students with special needs.  This year we're focusing on tools for students with intellectual, physical and/or communication challenges who may be following modified or alternative curricula. Looks like there will be more Bridges LIVE! events happening before the end of the school year, hosted by school boards. Does your board want to host a Bridges LIVE? If you host a Bridges LIVE at your location, we'll provide you with 5 free registrations. Bridges will supply computers, catering and all materials. We just need a suitable room. If you're interested in hosting a Bridges LIVE, contact me at bogdan@bridges-canada.com.

SoundingBoard Communication App 0

There are a lot of apps out there for face-to-face communication using an iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad.  SoundingBoard, from Ablenet, differentiates itself from the crowd in a number of key ways: [caption id="attachment_504" align="alignleft" width="158" caption="SoundBoard by Ablenet"]SoundingBoard[/caption]
  • It’s inexpensive.  Plus there are additional licensing discounts ideal for school districts looking for one solution for many students.
  • It’s from Ablenet a leader in this field for over 20 years. So you know there’s a real support system behind SoundingBoard and it’s not going to disappear in a few months.
  • It’s very easy to use.
  • Single or Dual Switch Access with Ablenet’s Blue Two Bluetooth Switch.  With the Blue Two you can plug in the Jelly Bean or any switch of your choice.
We’ve found SoundingBoard very easy to setup and configure; it comes with  lots of pre-loaded communication boards to customize.  If you have a functioning digital camera on board your device you can easily add your own pictures To get more info or to purchase, just search for SoundingBoard in the iTunes Store.

SoundingBoard Screens

Erickson, Koppenhaver Literacy & AAC Course – Back in 2012 0

Registration for Karen Erickson and David Koppenhaver’s course, Literacy and Alternative Augmentative Communication Course, is now open. This is the third time Bridges has presented this course. litteracy and aac erickson koppenhaver course logoThis is an intensive five day course on teaching literacy to children with severe communication impairments.  Speech Language Pathologists, teachers and other educators who work with students using AAC, Occupational Therapists, Communication Disorder Assistants and others would benefit from this comprehensive examination of assessment, instruction, classroom problem-solving, and best practice use of assistive technologies to support these students The course runs from May 14 - 18, 2012. The reviews from past offerings of this session have been glowing.  It is a lot of intense work -- essentially packing a semester of learning into a single week -- but has proven to be an extremely valuable and satisfying experience for participants. Please note that there are only 30 spots for the course. The last time it was offered, we ended up with a substantial waiting list so register early! For more info and to register, visit http://bridges-canada.com/BTL2012/literacy-and-aac-course.aspx.

Zingui and MegaBee Approved for ADP in Ontario 0

Both the Megabee manual eyegaze communicator and the Zingui have now been listed in the Assistive Devices Program Catalogue in the province of Ontario.  This means that both of these technologies can be purchased using ADP funding. Codes are below. The MegaBee  is a simple-to-use assisted assisted writing tablet used in face to face communication for literate eye-gaze users. It is ideal in a hospital, clinic or assisted care setting as it requires no calibration or set up for individual users.MegaBee The MegaBee delivers, immediate, efficient supported communication for a literate user with minimal training for either the communicator or assistant. Clinicians have really embraced the MegaBee, recognizing that it fills a need that isn't addressed by any other device.  This is a great stepping stone to a full computer eyegaze system and an easy light tech back up for an existing high tech eyegaze system for any literate user. Visit http://www.e2l.uk.com/megabee/Megabee.mov to see a video of the MegaBee in action. [caption id="attachment_222" align="alignleft" width="238" caption="Zingui 8" Dynamic AAC Device"]Zingui from Jabbla[/caption] The Zingui is a dynamic display AAC device with a tablet form factor.   But the Zingui has all the robust communication power (battery life, programming flexibility on computer or off, durability, bilingual) that you expect from Jabbla, the folks who build the other portable multilingual marvel, the Tellus Smart. See all the details on a previous post we did about the Zingui.  http://bridgesontario.wordpress.com/2010/06/08/zingui-%E2%80%93-big-screen-light-weight-dynamic-communication/ The Zingui configuration for ADP includes extended warranties, dual language, carrying case, PCS symbols and other optional accessories. MegaBee ADP Listings: MegaBee:        Communication Aids (Clinics); SGD/VOCA Access Hardware - Lease;   CC0000342 MegaBee:        Communication Aids (Clinics); SGD/VOCA Access Hardware - Purchase;   CC0000343 Zingui ADP Listings: Zingui:  Communication Aids (Clinics); Speech Generating Device SGD/VOCA - Lease;      CC0000344 Zingui:  Communication Aids (Clinics); Speech Generating Device SGD/VOCA - Purchase;      CC0000345