Monday, March 30, 2015

Using a Tablet Stand and Wireless Switch

Now that the Animated Step-by-Steps can be placed on an iPad using the PowerPoint app from Microsoft, I’ve been thinking a lot about how to present the iPad at an activity center in the classroom and how to ensure that individual or small group therapy sessions run smoothly when using the Animated Step-by Steps.

There are many tablet stands available. I recently purchased the Universal Tablet Stand by Cyber Acoustics at Staples for about $30 (Note: it is actually cheaper in the store than online). 

I like the fact that it is sturdy (but I’m sure my students will put that statement to the test). It has a nice non-slip, weighted base and is adjustable in both height and viewing angle. The latter is especially important when reducing the glare of overhead lights.  When the tablet stand is in its ‘full height’ position,  there is space available for manipulating materials or displaying a communication device (e.g, the child’s personal iPad with a communication app) or a simple non-electronic communication display.

If you link the iPad with a wireless switch such as RJ Cooper’s Bluetooth Super Switch ( you create an elegant option for animating the starred text.  As illustrated, the size of the Bluetooth Super Switch is a perfect fit for the non-slip tray on the Universal Tablet Stand. Furthermore, if the child uses a head switch, you can plug the child's switch into the switch port on the Bluetooth Super Switch. Couldn’t be more perfect! If they click too far forward, you can press the far left side of the screen (not the page back button) and it will 'step back' one animation. When you press the page back button it moves the program to the  previous page; when you press an 'imaginary narrow bar on the far left of the screen, it eliminates the last accidental animation. 

If you have experience with another tablet stand that works well,  please share that information in the comments section of this blog.

‘til the next post …

© 2015  Carol Goossens’, Ph.D.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

More Remote Switch Mounts

In the previous post I talked about using a small cutting board as a base for mounting a wireless switch. It greatly facilitates the task of offering a shared switch when using Animated Step-by-Steps on the Interactive Whiteboard. According to RJ Cooper, Kit Kehr from the UCLA Early Intervention Team has used a cricket paddle in the past to mount a switch for sharing. Extending this theme ... an inexpensive table tennis paddle (about $4.00) could also be used.

... 'til the next post ...

© 2015  Carol Goossens’, Ph.D.