image of Aeden concentrating on VoiceOver with his finger on the braille display's joystick.

Aeden’s Journey on the iPad: Part 2

Aeden's initial lesson plans including introduction to the joystick on the refreshable braille display!

Lesson 1

Materials used: iPad

Objective: Student will know how to handle the iPad.

To begin, I started out with a discussion on how we handle the iPad. We talked about what the word fragile means and that if we drop it on the floor it might break. We talked about how it is made of glass and glass breaks really easy. So we always leave it flat on the desk. I showed him how to touch the screen using my hand to practice on. I also demonstrated the difference between light touch and heavy touch (iPad gets mad when we touch it with a heavy touch). We also talked about how our hands must be clean before we touch the screen. First rule taught: I use a light touch with clean hands on a flat surface

Lesson 2

Materials used: iPad, Draftsman drawing board (APH) and plastic draftsman sheet from APH.

Objective: Student will understand the concept of the home button.  

I talked about the concept of home and what it means to us (we are safe and know where we are). Then I connected it to the iPad. The home button helps us to find our way home on the iPad. If we get lost we can always find the home button. I also introduced the concept of icons and the layout of what is on the iPad. I used the draftsman drawing board from APH. I explained what rows are and what the dock is on the bottom.  See picture below- it is sideways in the picture- sorry about that. I turned voice over on and had him touch and drag to listen to each of the icons on the screen. I made sure to have an icon that he knew so that he can make the connection to his iPad. Second Rule taught: If I get lost I can use the home button and listen to the icons to figure out where I am.

Tactile overlay representing icons on the iPad's home screen.

Lesson 3: Cause and effect

Materials used: iPad, soundbox app, pictello or any highly motivating app that the student might like

Objective: Student will demonstrate cause and effect through basic gestures and audio clues on the iPad

I started the concept of cause and effect by using the pictello app and the book I made for him. He instantly understood the concept and was excited to learn more. I also introduced Sound Box which he absolutely loves and is his go-to for free iPad time. I explained to him that each icon on the iPad has a special job. If we listen for the name of the app or folder, it helps us figure out what it does. I labeled the cause effect folder and told him that is where Sound Box is. I had him touch and drag to listen for the correct folder. Once he found it, I took him to the sound box game and he loved it. Third rule taught: If I touch the iPad, something exciting will happen. If I listen to the iPad, it will tell me where I am at. 

Lesson 4: Introduction to Voiceover gestures 

Materials used: iPad, VoiceOver accessibility turned on, VoiceOver practice in settings, Pictello or another app your student loves

Objective: The student will be able to use the basic voice over gestures on the iPad. I let the him explore it for a minute then I began to teach him the different gestures. I kept it very basic. I showed him what tap once is, flick right, left, up and down. Once I felt that he understood how to do each gesture, I took him to the page on the iPad with all of his favorite apps. I had him flick right to orient through the icons. I also showed him on the tactile representation from the draftsman drawing what moving to the next icon would look like. He started to realize that if he flicked right it would let him know where he was at. When he got to his favorite app at the time (pictello) he was so proud of himself. Because the iPad said double tap to open, he did it on his own. I instantly rewarded him by listening to the book he loved. From this point on, I would tell him that I need him to go to a certain app and then for practice, I would pretend that I told him the wrong one so he would have to go back. This took about three days in total before I moved on to the next step. I used Barnyard Animals, pictello, Blindfold bowling and Blindfold bop to supplement his skills. Rule: I can flick right and left to move around the icons to get where I want to go.

Lesson 5: Introduction to folders and apps/activating voiceover

At this point, I have been using Balyland magic on a consistent basis. Before we begin each lesson, I have him find the settings icon and we practice vo gestures. Each time I add one more gesture and we practice that until it is mastered.  We currently are working on two finger single and double tap, two finger swipe up, down, left and right.

Objective 1:Student will understand the concept of a folder verses an app. Objective 2: Student will be able to activate voice over with shortcut on the home button.

I started with having him navigate through the screen with vo and listen to the icons. I then had him go back to the cause/effect folder (because it has his favorite apps in it) and asked him to listen to what the iPad says. I asked him to listen for a number (in this case it was 14 apps). I then showed him a folder with papers in it, on the front of the folder is the word Math. This is the title of the folder. I asked him what he thought would be inside the folder? He said math papers. I explained to him that each paper has something to do with math, but it is different on every page. I told him the folder on the iPad is just like that. All the apps in the folder have to do with cause and effect but they all have their own name. So the next thing I did was ask him to find a folder and listen to to how many apps are in the folder. He liked this and we played it like a game. I explained to him that if it doesn’t say folder, it is all by itself and it will say its name. We practiced this for about two days until I felt he mastered it. I also introduced the voice over accessibility triple click on the home button. He picked that right up and is able to turn vo off and on now without verbal cues.  Rule: I can listen to how many apps are in each folder.  I can turn on voice over by pushing the home button three times.

Lesson 6: Using the RBD or braille display  to navigate the iPad

Materials used: iPad, APH Refreshabraille or other braille display device, Pictello, Exploring Braille app

Objective: Use the Refreshabraille joystick to orient the iPad screen. 

We are currently working on this skill. Since we had to adapt his RBD to make it work for him, it has taken a lot longer for this skill. In OT he has been working on manipulating the joystick. She has found a toy joystick with the same functions as the joystick on the RBD but a much larger version. This has helped with supporting his ability to use the RBD. In the first video with the red sweatshirt, you can see him struggle with using it (October 22) In the second video (October 30)  you will see me reminding him to keep his finger on the top of the joystick as it helps to keep his movement a true right, left up and down. We are still working on selecting an item, as he often pushes down to hard and it causes the joystick to perform a different function. I again had him find Pictello with the RBD as he loves listening to his book. He also has started using the Exploring Braille app. One of the biggest issues I am facing with him is that he pulls his hands away once he has found what he has located, read or performed.This obviously can be frustrating because he loses his orientation of the iPad and his placement of his hands. 

Rule: I can use the RBD to navigate the screen on the iPad just like I use my hand.

First Video

Second Video

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By bcskayaker

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