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Communication Assistive Technology (AT) is used by individuals with disabilities in order to perform functions that might otherwise be difficult or impossible for them. Assistive Technology device refers to any item, piece of equipment, or product system that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities. Assistive Technology devices can include mobility devices such as walkers and wheelchairs, as well as hardware and peripherals that assist people with disabilities in accessing computers or other information technologies.
Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) techniques can be employed for children who are not speaking yet, or who are not yet proficient verbal speakers. A child’s full communication profile is taken into account during an approved Alternative and Augmentative Communication/ Assistive Technology evaluation to identify and document specific areas of need. From there, Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) or Individualized Education Program (IEP) goals are developed and data collection methods are employed to ensure timely advances in communication and curriculum-related areas. Because verbal speech is intricately intertwined with later developing skills such as reading, writing, pre-computational and science, we offer these services at the pre-school level in order to give your child every opportunity to be ready for their first day of kindergarten.
At Alternatives For Children, we recognize that children have different learning styles. Once identified, these learning styles provide us with the unique opportunity to meet each child’s individual needs using the latest educational technology materials well before their kindergarten year. Our high and low-technology equipment, housed within our Educational Technology Center, address such curriculum related areas as; pre-literacy, mathematics and science concepts as well as expressive language and receptive language skill building. Whether your child needs individualized or group attention to supplement their success in the classroom, our seasoned Educational Technology Teachers and Alternative and Augmentative Communication Specialist are here to help you and your child.
Students who require Assistive Technology might be those with cognitive impairments or physical impairments that interfere with learning or other life functions. The technology helps the student to overcome or compensate for the impairment and be more independent in participating at school. Students who benefit from Assistive Technology may have mild learning disabilities or they may have physical disabilities or cognitive disabilities that range from mild to severe. Assistive Technology is not necessary for every student in special education, but it is an important part of the support system for some students with identified disabilities.
Educational Technology and AT and AAC certified specialists provide evaluation, consultation and direct service for children requiring AT or AAC services as part of their IFSP or IEP. Your child’s AT and AAC specialists, Educational Technology specialists, therapists, and teachers take a comprehensive approach to delivering services to your child. As a team they actively employ research-based data collection methods to identify, to assess, to treat, and to document improvements in your child’s identified needs areas.