Special Needs Students Get Help from IPads
Anthony plays the star spangle banner using the guitar app on the apple iPAD. He's then more than eager to break into a little yankee doodle dandy for an encore. It's just part of the new technology being used at the Lehmann School in Lakewood, NJ.
“We're looking at all different levels that the students have. From cause and effect to visually attending to higher levels where kids can do shapes. The music you saw, it's a wonderful thing like for Anthony who loves music, loves KISS, never thought he'd play guitar, to do that, it's really exciting for us to see,” said occupational therapist, Belinda Mckee.
All the special needs students here are using technology to express themselves from painting and making art on the iPAD to interviewing each other and watching it back to using what movement they do have to even snap a picture.
“We have plans to do more with interviewing, the photography, the slide shows. Getting the children to take pictures, some theme and then having a slide show to show parents what they did. More on their own than us doing it for them,” noted McKee.
“Every single child here, there is something you can find. Every single child I've been able to find at least one thing and that's the thing you go with," explained computer instructor, Chris Whelan.
Whelan says while she's not working with fancy programs, she is finding an even bigger impact from these little computers.
“It brings pleasure to their lives. A lot of them won't use it for education reasons but it brings a lot of pleasure to their lives. They are able to access it, which I love. The slightest touch and they will get a reaction,”she said.
A reaction and a smile of satisfaction that is priceless for the instructors.
“Oh, it's exciting. It just lights up the room. To see that smile, you can't beat it. It's very rewarding, ” McKee said.
And its even more monumental for mom and dad.
“From a mother's point of view, it's totally amazing. I was getting emotional before and I am again because I'm just so proud of my son. That he is actually able to use this program with some additional help,”explained Janet Marino, Anthony's mother.
“I'm so thankful for all this technology. Not only for my son, but for all special needs children out there that can use this technology. It's very heart-warming, very heart-warming,” she added.
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