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Personal tools

Free downloadable resources; software and hardware

Web Site Links
Here you'll find companies specialising in SEN hardware and software. There are also lots of teacher/parent freebies: downloadable resources and links to more. Please email the Check The Map team if you have suggestions for this area.
  • The new myGaze Power is here! Intuitive and powerful PC control Visual Interaction, the company that developed the award winning myGaze Assistive Eye Gaze that helps today thousands of children and adults with special needs, introduces the new myGaze Power. myGaze Power gives people with disabilities the ability to control the PC. It is an intuitive, quick and powerful way to access everything on the computer: the Internet and social media, music and video players, electronic books and games, communication software, emails, MS Office and much more. It empowers people to preserve their independence and reach their aspirations. The new myGaze Power includes the reliable and hi-performing myGaze n eye tracker and the powerful, yet intuitive EyeMouse Power software for full Windows control.

    http://www.mygaze.com/products/assistive-products/mygaze-power/
  • Are you perfect? Is anyone? Discover a world of imperfection in Curing Perfect – the new online, interactive graphic novel that explores ethical issues relating to stem cell research and gene therapy and its impact on disabled people. Created by a team of learning disabled artists, Curing Perfect allows you to engage with the difficult issues of ‘curing’ disability and creating the perfect person. The project is a collaboration between Carousel, Alex Peckham (Blast Theory), Simon Wilkinson (Circa69) and the University of Birmingham. Play it now at www.curingperfect.com or download the app from the app store http://bit.ly/curingperfectapp

    http://www.curingperfect.com/
  • In our fifteen page guide to managing attention seeking students, we share our proven response sequence for free, so you can benefit from our experience.

    http://beaconschoolsupport.co.uk/attention-seeking.php
  • A wonderful collection of apps mostly for Apple iOS devices, which are fun, stimulating or useful. Accessible and excellent. Thank you to Katie Kendall for this brilliant find.

    http://www.sensoryapphouse.com/index.php
  • This is the brilliant website of Simon Evans, a researcher and developer with particular interest in use of the internet, assistive technologies and new media by and for people with Intellectual Disabilities (ID). Trail blazing technologies are showcased here. CTM loves this site!!!

    http://www.cognable.com/
  • The standard keyboard and mouse on a computer present a barrier to many people with physical difficulties; the screen can be less than accessible for people with a visual impairment, and the complexity of software can deliver an environment that is difficult or impossible for users with learning difficulties. Fortunately there are plenty of accessiblity tools, assistive hardware, specialist software and other adaptations available that overcome these obstacles. This amazing site has simple guides, help and how tos, accessibility tips, info and reviews. Personally recommended by the Check The Map team - you will wonder how you ever managed without it! Seriously.

    http://www.bltt.org/
  • E P Toolbox is a website for handouts, short articles, videos and lots of other very helpful resources.

    http://www.eptoolbox.co.uk/
  • Developed as part of a research project at the University of Wales in Cardiff; ReacTickles provides an engaging and accessible computer environment for spontaneous imaginative play and learning. ReacTickles provides a series of interactive Tickles through which children with autism and other learning disabilities are encouraged to use technology. Children can develop mouse; keyboard; whiteboard; switch and screen skills whilst being encouraged to communicate, to use fine motor skills and to work together. The software also works well within mainstream early years settings enabling very young children to interact and learn to communicate as individuals and within small groups. Version 2 improves on installation, interface, creation of bespoke user interfaces, access to teacher and pupil resources and has been switch enabled to further increase accessibility.

    http://www.taglearning.com/reactickles-2.html
  • There are a number of maths resources suitable for adults and children with problems with reading the time, sequencing and maths functions.

    Copyright: Raviv Practice London http://www.ravivpracticelondon.co.uk/resources.html
  • Full of FREE resources, excellent materials and a brilliant example of how the web can be used to connect people, ideas and resources for our community. While its focus is on the other side of the world much of the content is relevant to everybody. Thanks to Sally Paveley for suggesting this site.

    http://www.clickspecialednz.com
  • Intensive Interaction is a practical approach to interacting with people with severe or profound and multiple learning disabilities and/or autism. There is nothing difficult or expert about Intensive Interaction, it is a very practical approach to communication and socialising with people who do not find it easy communicating or being social. Visit the website for further information downloads and links provided by Leeds Partnerships NHS Trust

    http://www.leedspft.nhs.uk/our_services/ld/intensiveinteraction
  • Dynamo Maths is a three stage programme that addresses the needs of children who are dyscalculic or struggling with maths. It develops an intuitive grasp of number and number relationships using audio and visual stimuli. The programme supports the research that indicates that there may be specific areas such as working memory impairments or core deficits in acquiring these early vital mathematical skills. Dynamo Maths supports the thinking process of children struggling with maths and has drawn extensively from research on how the brain learns maths.

    http://www.dynamomaths.co.uk
  • Another recommendation to add to the growing number of free touch typing games online.

    http://tux4kids.alioth.debian.org/tuxtype/download.php
  • This is weird, and excellent. Single switch presses are all that's required (mimicks space bar). The developers say: Strange Attractors is an experimental, action-puzzler in which the player navigates through a variety of bizarre worlds by controlling the forces of gravity using an elegant and unique interface. Check The Map says: You could use this with someone building cause and effect, right up to someone understanding timing, scoring and more. It's a lot of fun. Try it.

    http://www.ominousdev.com/
  • Helping Children of all abilities become better and more confident in maths - primary level

    http://www.mathsbuddy.co.uk
  • The biggest mouse cursor (6 x 3.5cm) available on the web, and it's free! Made by Chris Stringfellow for anyone with difficulty tracking the mouse pointer. This is an excellent download - you'll find it by clicking the link and scrolling to the bottom of the page. You can change the colour once it's loaded by right clicking the icon in the task bar. If you like it, be kind enough to email Chris and tell him.

    http://www.fxc.btinternet.co.uk/assistive.htm
  • Ghotit offers unique writing and reading online services for people with dyslexia, dysgraphia or people who are not native-English speakers.

    http://www.Ghotit.com
  • Ginger Software developed a ground breaking assistive software for people with Dyslexia and other learning difficulties. The software uses context to correct, with the click of a button, whole sentences containing misused words and multiple severe spelling mistakes.

    http://www.gingersoftware.com
  • ZAC is the first web browser developed specifically for children with autism, and autism spectrum disorders such as Asperger syndrome, pervasive developmental disorders (PDD), and PDD-NOS. We have made this browser for the children - for their enjoyment, enrichment, and freedom. Children touch it, use it, play it, interact with it, and experience independence through ZAC. Thank you to Mart Pistorius for finding and recommending this little gem on the web.

    http://www.zacbrowser.com/
  • This is an excellent and simple dwell clicker. Ideal for those who can operate the mouse pointer, but not the buttons. For example, users of a head mouse such as the Smart NAV can use this software to control mouse operated Windows programs. You can: * specify the size of the target for users who cannot hold the pointer in one place. * change the length of time for a dwell to be accepted * turn sounds on or off * move the dwell clicker window around the screen

    http://www.oatsoft.org/Software/dwell-click
  • This is a highly recommended free download for simple programming, drawing, interactive animations etc suitable for all ages. You can make personalised switch programs full of sound and pictures that are very motivating. Used by visitors to Check The Map for students working at P-Levels 8 and above. Accessible by every means and very addictive. Many thanks to Chrissie Wilson, Chilworth House School for the recommendation.

    https://scratch.mit.edu/
  • Resources and guidance booklets

    http://www.contactcandle.co.uk/downloads.htm
  • Tux Paint is a free, award-winning drawing program for children ages 3 to 12 (key stages 1 & 2). It combines an easy-to-use interface, fun sound effects, and an encouraging cartoon mascot who guides children as they use the program. Recommended to Check the Map by Deborah Moppett of Harlow Fields School.

    http://www.tuxpaint.org/
  • This is a new type of text input software. Dasher can be driven by a trackerball, joystick, touchscreen, head/foot mouse, eye tracker... anything that takes the role of a mouse. It allows users to record text quickly and intuitively, giving a completely hands-free writing system. For more information, a demonstration and free download, visit the website.

    http://www.inference.phy.cam.ac.uk/dasher/SpecialNeeds.html
  • A website helping people to understand difficult words and jargon. Also, a tool which can be used on your own website.

    http://www.word-bank.com
  • A simple set of activities to help older users practice mouse skills such as clicking, double clicking and dragging. Bits can be played online, or you can download more activities if you wish. Our thanks to Chris Brett from the Holbrook Centre for Autism for telling us about this link.

    http://www.mouseprogram.com/
  • You can use this as a learning resource for Information Technology at Access Level 3 / Intermediate Level 1. If the clues are too difficult, you can edit them by clicking in the text clue/text box. Check out all the other fabulous resources for English and Maths under this link too.

    http://www.assist-it.org.uk/assets/content/learning_resources.htm
  • Our thanks to Craig at Assist IT for supplying this link to some fabulous and FREE numeracy resources. Try your hand at times tables, easy sums and adding and subtracting. Simple, colourful resources that will be very useful for all that extra maths practice -and totally accessible with a mouse, keyboard, touch screen, switch (and onscreen keyboard), concept keyboard... brilliant.

    http://www.assist-it.org.uk/assets/content/learning_resources.htm
  • Thanks to the hard work Craig at Assist IT you'll find lots of FREE interactive curriculum resources on this link. Try picture matching with the Romans, or for older learners, a cloze exercise about mobile phone technology. This site has many other excellent resources too - definitely worth a look!

    http://www.assist-it.org.uk/assets/content/learning_resources.htm
  • This is a very useful FREE resource where you can browse and download graphics, intended to support facilitators who are planning with people, or anyone looking to make information easier to understand. The graphics are age appropriate and simple in design. You need to register to browse the gallery which is free and took Check The Map about five seconds. An invaluable resource - thanks to Charlie for telling us about it.

    http://www.charliesgraphics.com/about.htm
  • Clear large cursors for MS Windows platform - free to download for use on your PC. A wonderful range of cursor alternatives for students who find the standard range of cursors difficult to see. You can choose from a range of colours and all the icons are clear and very well thought out. I'm using the red pointer set right now and it's excellent. Many thanks to Philip Henderson for creating this fabulous resource.

    http://www.philip-henderson.co.uk
  • Share or find photos with this great new online application. Flickr is a way to show your photos to the people who matter to you. With Flickr you can: * Show off your favourite photos to the world * Blog the photos you take with a cameraphone * Securely and privately show photos to your friends and family around the world. For teachers, parents and students - this site is easy to use (though you need to use a mouse and keyboard) and has been recommended to Check The Map as an easy way to share your photos to the people you want to see them. And basic accounts are free!

    http://www.flickr.com/learn_more.gne
  • Using photos is one way of making documents greatly more appealing and accessible for students with special needs. Here you'll find a collection of quality photos that can be used for any purpose including teaching aids and homework. Search and browse functions allow you to find images from different contexts, from everyday items, to people, places and animals.

    http://www.freedigitalphotos.net
  • This is an excellent idea to help increase concentration span and time awareness. Perhaps you want a student to write for two minutes, or to complete an activity within 10 minutes? Clicking this link takes you to a freely downloadable timer. Simply choose the length of time you want to countdown and click start to turn on the timer. When the time's up, a message will appear in the middle of the screen to tell you - simple, but effective. Thanks to Tara Marshall for contributing this.

    http://www.pc-tools.net/win32/mintimer/
  • CENMAC have loads of ideas sheets for teachers and parents. These include using your communication devices, note takers, switches, switch acessible software, Clicker, Neos, Penfriend, symbols, specialised mice, IntelliKeys, cause and effect, spelling... you name it. If you're in a mainstream or special needs inclusive setting with adults or kids, looking at this site will save you a whole lot of time. Many thanks to Ann and Trish at CENMAC for sharing these resources.

    http://www.cenmac.com/helpsheets/
  • The Zenkey is a FREE program that allows you to control almost all aspects of your computer via the keyboard. It can control the speed of the mouse pointer from keyboard shortcuts. Using keystrokes that work no matter which program you are in, you can do actions like launch a program or bring it back into focus; open a document, folder or Internet resource; perform an Internet search; minimize or maximize a window; issue a Media command. You can add any program, add or alter any menu, and assign any keystroke to perform any action. A massive thank you to David Colven for recommending this. Works on 2000/2003/XP/Vista/7 machines.

    http://zenkey.sourceforge.net/
  • This has soared to the top of my favourite freebies list. It's a small file to download and offers a fantastically simple art tool to explore the media of felt pen, chalk, oil paint, crayon and even a palette knife. Brilliant for touch screens, interactive whiteboards and early mouse skills, this will encourage creativity, choice making and group work. Pictures can be exported to other programs when you're done. For PCs or Macs and highly recommended.

    http://www.artrage.com
  • A great FREE download from the ACE Centre. Switch Access to Windows (SAW) enables users to access Windows 95, 98, Me, 2000 and XP applications using one or two switches. The download includes extensive help files which include tutorials.

    http://www.ace-centre.org.uk/index.cfm?pageid=2926A897-3048-7290-FED02B6A24887F44
  • This download link takes you to BiggyLite - a selection of the larger commercially available Biggy. Biggy helps you to take control of the mouse pointer - it makes it bigger, animated, left-handed, lockable... you name it. Biggy is an excellent program, and this free trial will enable you to test it out and see if it meets your needs.

    http://downloads.cnet.co.uk/0,39100210,39329560s,00.htm
  • This link takes you to three FREE excellent little downloads for programs to aid early learning:- K1 kaleidoscope demo, Pre Mouse and Touch Screen Mazes. They are quick and easy to download and make great little freebies for targetted ICT skills using switches, mouse and touchscreen.

    http://www.sarahgreenland.com/downloads.htm
  • Innovative Products for People with Special Needs. This site gives details of specialised joysticks and switch-based devices. email contact: info@click2go.ie

    http://www.click2go.ie
  • Widgit Software and Warwickshire Education Authority working together using symbols to create resources, to support inclusion in mainstream Primary schools for KS1 and KS2. FREE Resources to download and use in your school!

    http://www.widgit.com/SIP/index.htm
  • Widgit Software is the longest running Special Educational Needs software company in the UK. Its products are designed to develop literacy using pictures, symbols and words, particularly for learners who have a measure of difficulty in developing traditional orthographic skills.

    http://www.widgit.com/
  • Resources, freeware downloads, links and documents for those involved in the education of pupils with learning difficulties, autism and other special educational needs. Some of the materials may also be of use to teachers and parents of primary aged children. All material here is free for educational use, but please do not add content to other sites, CDs etc without permission.

    http://www.senteacher.org/main/files.php
  • A resource of fun ideas, art and music and 'assistive technology', for and by moderate to severely learning/physically disabled people. Video games are fun and also give people the power to do amazing things that they would be unable to in real life. With the right specialised hardware, many standard video games can be played by anyone, no matter the disability. "One Switch Gaming" is especially interested in games playable with a single switch, and in campaigning for accessibility features in all games. There are a number of free downloadable arcade games here which are quite advanced in that they require either rapid button pushes or fairly accurate timing. All are switch accessible, naturally.

    http://www.oneswitch.org.uk
  • Helping dyslexic people make the most of their abilities. We stock a wide range of software, gadgets, and other products for people with dyslexia, visual impairments and other disabilities.

    http://www.dyslexic.com
  • iansyst Ltd are specialist suppliers of computers and IT solutions for disabled people of all ages. We have our own range of made-to-order PCs, and can also supply Apple Macs and a selected range of Notebooks. By arrangement with the VAT Office, we are able to supply computers VAT-free to disabled customers

    http://www.iansyst.co.uk
  • Here you'll find downloads for Music Games, SEN Switcher, Talking Faces and a switch accessible CD Player. Excellent games, quick to download, for Windows PCs and Macs, and totally FREE!!!!

    http://www.inclusive.co.uk/downloads/downloads.shtml
  • We supply software for many different areas of Special Needs including early learning, communication, older learners, across all areas of the National Curriculum and for Dyslexia. In our hardware range you will find hundreds of different access devices: touch monitors, switches, keyboards, roller mice.. you name it. Inclusive have a specialist team of advisors on hand to give you more information, training and consultancy.

    http://www.inclusive.co.uk/
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