HearBuilder is an interactive online language program that can be accessed on a computer or tablet. It has four types of activities; Following Directions, Phonological Awareness, Auditory Memory and Sequencing.
An annual ‘Specialist’ subscription allows me to track the progress of 20 students and to set the levels of difficulty at an instructional level for each student.
Students can logon using a computer or the free apps for each activity can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play. The program is cumulative so as the child masters skills at one level they automatically progress to the next level.
HearBuilder was developed by Super Duper Publications.
HelpKidzLearn is a collection of software for young children and those with learning difficulties to play online. The software is split into five sections: Early Years, Games and Quizzes, Stories and Songs, Creative Play and Find Out About.
I purchase an annual subscription to HelpKidzLearn and use its motivational games and songs using screen sharing to help engage with children online.
eLr is a comprehensive collection of speech, language and literacy resources that are presented on-screen . The therapist purchases a subscription and allocates suitable activities for clients. The activities can be used during therapy sessions by screen sharing or families can complete activities on their computer or tablet for home practice. The graphics are a bit dated but children enjoy the on-screen format and motivating games.
I choose to use Zoom because:
It is easy for clients to join a meeting. They just need to click on a link we send by email.
The screen sharing function is great. You can share the desktop, a whiteboard and iPad and iPhone apps. You can share your computer’s audio which is important when you are sharing a program that has sound. You can give remote control of your screen to your client.
It is free for 1:1 meetings or for the first 40 minutes of a group meeting. I chose to buy Zoom Pro so I can access reports about my meetings, particularly the duration of meetings. I can also host group meetings without any time limits.
Sessions can be recorded (with permission of course!)
Ookla Speed Test is a quick and reliable way to trouble shoot internet connection problems. When videoconference quality is a problem, both parties can do a speed test to determine whether the internet speed is adequate to support videoconferencing. Sometimes internet speed can be increased by moving to another room or moving closer to the router. At the least, you can see which end of the conference is having difficulty.
WARNING: Don’t be tricked into clicking on any advertising on the speed test page!
Better Internet for Rural, Regional and Remote Australia is a group of volunteers aiming to help country Australians sought out their internet issues. They have a website with information and links and an active Facebook page with quick responses to your questions about internet connectivity (or otherwise!) BIRRR are wonderful advocates who are trying to address the great ‘data divide’ between metropolitan and rural internet users.
- Small whiteboard and marker.
A whiteboard is useful to write the session’s activities on and then cross them off as completed. It can be used for barrier games, to demonstrate what you would like a helper to draw on a page and, in the worst case scenario, to give written instructions about how to turn on the computer audio!
The ABC KIDS website is designed to appeal primarily to pre-school children. It provides a gateway to online content relating to ABC KIDS TV programming, as well as providing games and activities that will appeal to this age group.
PBS Kids is the brand for most of the children’s programming aired by the Public Broadcasting Service in the United States. It has educational games and videos from Curious George, Wild Kratts and other PBS KIDS shows.
Epic! is an e-library with over 20,000 books for children 12 and under. The library includes a large selection of fiction and non-fiction titles which can be read together online or the child can choose a ‘Read-to-me’ book which is read aloud. It can be difficult to demonstrate how to read books together online unless you each have a hard copy of the same book at either end of the videoconference. I can demonstrate how to use books for language modelling and comprehension and then give feedback to the helper to develop their skills.
Twinkl is an online educational publisher. After purchasing a subscription you can download lots of activities suitable for children of all ages. Twinkl publishes lesson plans, power point presentations, resource packs, worksheets, interactive activities and teaching ideas. I regularly download activities to use in my language, articulation and phonological awareness therapy programs.
About Therapy Connect
Therapy Connect is a therapy service offering high quality teletherapy supports online using videoconferencing. “We offer a coordinated team approach meaning that families can access Therapy Anywhere Anytime”.
Therapy Connect is owned and operated by Sue Cameron and Simone Dudley.
Sue Cameron is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist with more than 25 years experience working in health and education. Simone is an Occupational Therapist with over 20 years clinical experience working in paediatrics across both the public and private sectors in rural & regional NSW. Together they are passionate about ensuring regional and remote families have access to high quality services.
Contact Therapy Connect to find out how we might be able to help you.