I am a special education teacher that works with a wide variety of needs during the day. I service 20-25 K-5 students, ranging from learning disabled, orthopedic disability, mild cognitive disability, Deaf/ hard of hearing and Autistic. My students are multi-ethnic and over half live at or below the poverty level.
My student population is constantly changing since there is a high rate of student mobility in my district and some students qualify mid-year for special education.
Most students come to my room for about 30 minutes for direct services daily. I spend a significant amount of time collaborating with classroom teachers to make sure all aspects of the classroom are accessible to them. I love having the opportunity to think outside the box and look for new technology that can enhance my students’ lives.
Technology is a wonderful thing and my school is very fortunate to be able to use iPads. However, not everyone is able to access the information on an iPad with the same ease. I have several students who wear hearing aids and some who are sensitive to headphones or earbuds on or in their ears which makes using the iPads more difficult. iPads are used on a daily basis for numerous activities that cover all core subjects. It is very important that my students are able to hear with the best clarity possible.
I will never forget the look of pure delight when I was able to let a student try out a pair of bone conduction headphones for the first time.
A quiet and reserved student lit up with excitement as she exclaimed with a big smile, "I hear it!" Sadly, I must return this loaned pair of headphones in several weeks. This one pair of headphones is being shared between 2 classrooms and two students with hearing aids. I believe that this technology would help students who have a sensitivity to touch, specifically things being over or in their ears. I am in need of 5 pairs of headphones. Four pairs would be attached to students while they are mainstreamed in their general education classroom and one to stay in the special education classroom to use when they are with me.
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