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3 posts for May 2012
By Paul Nisbet on Tuesday 29th May, 2012 at 3:49pm
I've been meaning to blog about this for ages and have finally got round to it!
The Oxford Owl web site has over 250 free Oxford Reading Tree eBooks for teachers, children and parents to read online. The books have a recorded narration (i.e. human, not computer speech) and you can zoom in and out to make the text and pictures bigger or smaller. Turning the pages is done with a click of a mouse - you can't use the keyboard or switches directly. You could however point the mouse over the 'next page' button and then use a switch to click, to turn the page.
The books are ideal for using on a whiteboard or for individuals to read on their own computer (but not iPad - the books are Adobe Flash format which don't play on iOS).
There are also some activities for each book (although they didn't work on my computer - no doubt got the wrong version of Java / Flash / other plug in) and the 'Kids Barn' has a lot of information and games about Biff, Chip, Kipper and Floppy and the other characters.
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By Paul Nisbet on Tuesday 8th May, 2012 at 12:49pm
109 new books have just been added to the Books for All Database. They are all Large Print PDFs which have been created by the VTSS team in Edinburgh, and we are grateful to them for sharing these accessible copies via the Database.
The books can be downloaded and printed out for pupils with visual difficulties, and they can also be read on screen, which can be helpful to learners with dyslexia and reading difficulties, pupils with physical disabilities who have difficulty holding the paper book and turning pages.
Learners can read the books on computer using free Adobe Reader software, which lets you zoom in and out to change the size, and adjust the text and page colours. With most of the books, the text can be read out using either the free built-in Adobe Read Out Loud, or other text readers such as Ivona MiniReader, ClaroRead, Co:Writer, Penfriend or PDFaloud. Pupils can use the Adobe Reader commenting and markup tools to highlight key passages and add their own typed or recorded audio notes. To find out more, take a look at our Video Guides and Quick Guides.
You can find the new books on the Database here. (Note you have to log in to the database see the new books).
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By Paul Nisbet on Tuesday 1st May, 2012 at 12:48pm
The Assessing Dyslexia Toolkit was formally launched on 1st June 2010 by Sir Jackie Stewart and Mike Russell, the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning. The Toolkit was developed by the Dyslexia Scotland Assessment Working Group, chaired by Dr. Margaret Crombie, with funding from the Scottish Government and provides an online resource for teachers and early years workers to use to assess literacy difficulties and dyslexia.
The new resource will become the Addressing Dyslexia Toolkit in the autumn, and will have more material and resources on how educators can support dyslexic learners.
You can give your input to the new toolkit by completing this short online survey.
If you work with dyslexic learners and you've not already used the toolkit, why not take a visit? It contains a wealth of useful, practical advice on assessing the needs of learners with dyslexia and hopefully, the new site will provide even more support for addressing these needs.