A switch lets you do incredible things in a simple way. With a switch you can activate and control computers, iPads, toys, participation tools, communication devices, appliances… virtually anything, to learn, communicate, interact with the environment.View All Switches
Switches Bridges Break Webinars
The Mighty Switch
Connect with the world and make learning real – an introduction to the underrated power of the mighty switch!
Click to Connect: Interfacing Switches with Computers, Appliances and more
Controlling PC’s, Chromebooks, iPads, toys, even plug-in appliances with a switch is a lot easier than you think. See how a switch interface can maximize the power of switches.
Look for three essential parts to pretty much any switch.
Activation Area: this is what triggers the signal of a switch: a button that can take a solid whack from a fist or foot, or a pad that just need to be touched or, in the case of proximity switches, approached. This is where the user creates an input that will make something happen.
Important features to consider:
• Surface: overall size and shape
• Feed back: does the switch let you know it’s been activated? E.g. there’s a click (auditory or tactile), a light (visual) or vibration (tactile).
• Force: the amount of pressure to activate the switch. It can be as little as 10grams up to 250 grams of force.
Base: Securing or mounting a switch will depend on the base of the switch. Whether you Velcro it to a tray or attach it to a mount for stability, the size of the base is important when considering your switch options. (Browse mounts here).
Output: The signal created by the activation area is sent to a device (e.g. computer, communication device, blender) through a wire or wirelessly. Wireless switches are paired with a receiver by Bluetooth or radio frequency. .
A variety of common switches for quick comparison of specifications, features and functions.
An effective mounting solution is:
it stays in the place and position. Here it’s good to think about not just the user and where the device is used – table, walker, chair, counter etc. – but the environment.
A simple adjustment of the angle of the device can change the kind of movement the user needs to activate the device. For example to activate something flat is an up-down movement, but angling upright, perpendicular to the ground might be more of a forward movement and may also mean the target is easier for the user to see.
Whether head, hand, foot or any other way they’re activating the device, the mount should minimize effort for the user. For some users that means up close. For others – because of how the user moves or the specific activity – it could be farther away.
At an appropriate height.
Switches must be connected to something -- toy, communication device, or interface - to be useful. Without that connection, a switch is like having a key without the lock it's supposed to open.
Computers, Chromebook, iPads
Control apps wired or wirelessly.Explore the collection
For science, math, literacy and just plain fun.Explore the collection
Activate radios, blenders, watering tools and more with a Powerlink.Learn more
Alternative to direct select for high-tech or light tech communication devices.Explore the collection