Gone were those days when the orthodox way of teaching and learning was the only option. Nowadays, we live in a digital era where we are witnessing technology is revolutionizing every sector even the education sector.
The use of the latest modern technology especially in special education schools has made the learning content easier for those special needs students who have a tough time in general to pursue their education. According to gitnux.com, 96% of teachers believe that it improves the student's participation in the learning process.
In this blog post, we have picked some of the best technological trends with which every special needs teacher can create an inclusive and engaging learning environment for special education needs (SEN) students.
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5 Benefits Of Utilizing Latest Technology Trends Within Special Education Field
1. Utilization of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) hold significant potential in the field of special education. These groundbreaking technologies offer a virtual environment where children with special needs can actively engage in honing their motor skills. To illustrate, autistic children who struggle with navigating crowded spaces or enduring long waits can greatly benefit from immersive VR environments that simulate real-life scenarios. By practicing these situations within a virtual setting, they can enhance their comfort level and readiness when facing similar challenges in the physical world.
Furthermore, the utilization of virtual reality technology enables the creation of a simulated environment that fosters mindfulness and promotes awareness. Specifically, children with special needs can engage in activities where they manipulate objects in ways that surpass real-world limitations. This interactive experience greatly contributes to the enhancement of their cognitive and motor skills. It also provides them with a unique opportunity to be present and engaged in their learning process.
2. Artificial Intelligence for Early Screening
Artificial intelligence (AI) has made significant advancements in the field of special education. Several companies have developed AI-powered tools that help identify learning disabilities and delays in development at an early stage. For instance, Amplify's mCLASS tool uses AI to assess children's reading skills and identify dyslexia. Similarly, Babynoggin has developed a mobile app that utilizes AI to screen children for delayed development in various areas, including motor skills, social-emotional abilities, cognitive processing, and language skills.
While these AI-powered tools can efficiently screen children for potential learning disorders, it is important to note that only trained professionals can diagnose specific needs. Direct interaction and assessment are still essential for accurate diagnosis and personalized intervention.
3. Personalization Education
Personalization is a growing trend in education, and it holds significant promise for special needs children. Personalized learning allows students to customize their learning experience based on their individual needs and preferences. This customization can be especially beneficial for special needs children, as it eliminates the need for them to repeatedly modify different profiles and settings to accommodate their requirements.
Technology companies like Google have been instrumental in advancing personalized learning through their web-based Chromebook devices and G-Suite productivity tools. These tools offer various features, such as "select-to-speak," that allow students with special needs to have text read back to them. This is especially beneficial for braille readers.
Additionally, these tools provide document editing, word prediction, and translation capabilities that can be linked to individual user accounts. This ensures consistent accessibility settings across multiple devices.
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4. Computer Science Accessibility for All SEN Students
Several organizations have joined forces to promote inclusive computer science education by ensuring that students with special needs have equal access to learning opportunities in this field.
One such initiative is led by Bootstrap, a company that has developed a computer science curricular module for math and physics classes. Their goals include making their platform more user-friendly for students who cannot use a computer mouse, incorporating screen reader capabilities, and creating a toolkit function that integrates with different programming languages to enhance accessibility.
By making computer science education accessible to all, special needs students can develop essential skills and pursue careers in this rapidly evolving field.
5. Making "Open Educational Resources (OER)" More Accessible
The concept of "open" technology resources has gained traction in special education. Open educational resources (OER) are freely available resources that can be used and modified without restrictions. While many schools have embraced the use of OER, there is still room for improvement in terms of accessibility and customization for special needs students.
For instance, PDF files, although widely used, have limitations when it comes to accessibility for special needs students. They may not work well with screen readers, have limited searchability, and lack customization options. However, there is a growing trend towards making "open" resources more inclusive and friendly for special education students. Efforts are being made to develop platforms and tools that address these limitations and provide a more accessible learning experience for all students.
Embrace and Integrate Latest Technology Within Your Special Education class
Technology has revolutionized every industry, especially the education sector. The utilization of the latest technological teaching method can improve the learning experiences of every special needs student a lot, as technology has the power to cater the different needs of SEN students. Those teachers who have pursued courses like Online Special Education Courses, knows really well how to utilize the latest technology for the benefit of their special need students.
Furthermore, every special needs teacher can embrace the above-mentioned technology trends and create an inclusive learning environment that empowers special needs children and helps them reach their full potential.
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