Photo of an iPad and Bluetooth keyboard with the VoiceOver blackbox cursor on the Docs icon.

Strategies for Becoming Tech Power-User!

Help your student to take his/her tech skills to the next level!

As educators, our primary job when teaching screen reader skills to students is to teach the basic gestures (tablets), keyboard commands and/or braille display commands so that students can successfully and independently use their device within the classroom. Most educators do not personally use a screen reader (such as VoiceOver, JAWS, NVDA or TalkBack) and are not power-users with this kind of software. With a little initial help, students will quickly become the ‘tech expert’ and will surpass their sighted instructor. How can educators encourage students to take the next step? 

Teachers should guide students to take responsibility of keeping current with their tech. Start by leading the student and quickly move to prompting the student’s curiosity by asking the student to:

Most mainstream classroom teachers are not familiar with accessibility features, what apps are accessible (or not!) and how the student can use their technology to complete assignments. Set up opportunities for your student to teach mainstream educators about their tech. This not only promotes self-advocacy, but also helps your student learn more about their tech and boosts confidence. You have to really know your tech to be able to teach it to someone else! Students should also learn to take responsibility of educating mainstream teachers by:

Collage of power tech user

By Diane Brauner

hands in home row position on a QWERTY keyboard

Keyboarding curriculum: Accessibyte’s Typio Pro vs. Typio

Photo of Jonathan Hooper with tech-themed background.

Multimedia accessibility: The multimodal toolbox approach

Graphic: "Explaining accommodations to substitute teachers"

Explaining accommodations to substitute teachers