EdTech Tools for Inclusive Classrooms

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One of the key strengths of learning technologies and more specifically assistive technologies is that they help students with disabilities tap into their full potential and provide inclusive learning environments that respond o0 diverse learning needs. Microsoft Educator Center offers some really great free accessibility resources that teachers and parents can use with their learners to help them unlock their learning potential. In today's post we are sharing with you some of Microsoft's special education tools that can be used to enhance students reading, writing, math, and communication. These are built-in features that can be found in several of Microsoft tools such as OneNote, Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Microsoft Team, Office Lens, etc:

Screenshot taken from Microsoft Learning Tools video

"The Immersive Reader is a free tool that aids with independent reading and comprehension. Because it lives in so many different apps and platforms, it is helping readers with many different aspects of learning. There are features within this tool that read text out loud, break it into syllables, and provide options for visual layout, such as spacing between lines and letters, or color themes."Watch this video to learn more about Immersive Reader.

"Office Lens allows students to independently digitize materials. When working remotely, students will be able to access as well as turn in materials independently all from their device." 

3- Dictation
"Dictation, or speech to text, is available across multiple platforms. This allows students to speak into a device and the written text will appear in the program.  It is a quick and easy way to create drafts, outlines, notes, or just get thoughts out into text." Check out these resources to learn more about how to use Dictation:
  1. Dictate your documents in Word
  2. Dictate your emails in Outlook
  3. Dictate your notes in OneNote
  4. Dictate your presentations and slide notes in PowerPoint
"Word Prediction uses text suggestions to assist with writing in a word processing program. As students enter in the first letter or letters of the words, the program predicts the word that the student is trying to type. Words appear in a prediction list and students select their desired word from this list." Watch this video to learn more about Word Prediction.

"The Math Tools in OneNote can take hand-written equations and not only convert it to text, but also outline the solution steps. Students appreciate the help when trying to visualize equations on a graph and they don't have to ask for help. All of this can be done right on their own device." 

"Live captions can occur during presentations in PowerPoint or during a live Teams meeting. The viewer is able to see captions as people are speaking. Whether new to the language, a student with deafness, or someone who has difficulty processing auditory language, this is an excellent way to help ensure that all viewers can participate to the fullest extent." Watch this video to learn more about Live Captions

"Microsoft Translator helps bridge communication gaps, supporting accessible classroom learning with live captioning, cross-language understanding, and even multilingual casual conversations to help with student integration." Watch this video to learn more about Microsoft Translator.