Product Feature: Students With Autism Thrive in a Picture-Rich EnvironmentBy Slater, Jean M.; Closing the Gap, Vol. 24, No. 3, pp. 22-24
Publication Date: August/September 2005
Article discusses how Picture It and PixWriter can be used to improve language performance for children with autism, as their strong visual strengths can allow them to use computers and graphic symbols to enhance motivation and improve their communication skills. Picture It and PixWriter both combine symbols, text, and speech output in order to allow children with autism to understand text and express themselves through written language. Picture It allows instructors to type words into a Story Text window, which can be matched with graphics via mouse click. After the paired words and graphics appear in the document, the instructor can save, print, or reposition words and graphics to fit the needs of the assignment and to meet the student’s goals. The program allows teachers and parents to create documents such as communication boards, behavior plans, science experiments, personalized stories, wall charts, and checklists, all of which can be read out loud by the computer. PixWriter allows students to compose text by clicking on buttons filled with words and graphics. When a button is selected via touch screen or mouse click, the word and graphic are displayed in the top section of the screen and the word is spoken. Words, phrases, and sentences, and entire essays can be composed and read out loud. A number of different tools and assignments that can be created using these programs are discussed, including schedules, adapted reading materials, and writing assignments.
Assistive Products Discussed: PICTURE IT
Published by: Closing the Gap, Inc. (Website:http://www.closingthegap.com)