Author: Ian Bean

Switch Adapted Toys

Reading an excellent blog post from Allan Wilson at CALL Scotland this morning about switch adapted toys. The post details Allan’s frustration at finding a toy suitable for a learner with visual impairment and severe physical difficulties. You can read Allan’s blog post here: Simple Sensory Toys for Switches Like Allan, I sometimes have to Read More …

Difficult Decisions

I saw this message posted today on one of the support groups I follow on Facebook. It illustrates one parent’s dilemma with assistive technology, but it also mirrors many of the emails I receive from parents and school colleagues who are working with young people using eye gaze technology. “”We fought forever to get our Read More …

Christmas is coming

It’s almost that time of year again when our schools resonate to the joyous sounds of Christmas music. Here at SENICT, we’ve putting together a collection of Christmas themed activities for those in your school who are learning to use a switch, touch screen, pointing device or eye gaze system. The activities will be available Read More …

October Newsletter

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness … and a very busy time here at the SENICT office. This month we have information about a brand new course for schools, an update on the launch of our ‘Assess and Make Progress’ web site and our usual round up of assistive technology news and free resources.  Cause Read More …

SENSwitcher is back online

Sad to hear that the Northern Grid web site has now gone offline and with it SENSwitcher, the program for children with complex needs that I designed almost 20 years ago. When we first made SENSwitcher, we also created a version which will run offline. UPDATE April 18: Moved SENSwitcher to new web server. Please Read More …

Computing and Additional Needs

 Since the roll-out of the new curriculum, I’ve met many teachers who seemed genuinely worried that they didn’t have the skills or experience to teach this the computing strand and those who quite rightly asked me the more pertinent question, “What will my students get from learning this?” I’ve thought long and hard about that Read More …

Transformational Technology

Remember when interactive whiteboards transformed teaching and learning for students with severe and complex needs? When Pokemon Go had all of our students who were on the spectrum out in the community socialising with others or when eye gaze taught us all we needed to know about our students with profound and complex needs. Me Read More …

It’s a small world after all

Like many of my colleagues, I’d often thought about setting up a link with an overseas school and running a collaboration project. The children I taught all have severe and complex learning difficulties and to be frank, don’t get out much. Only one of the ten children in the class had ever been out of Read More …

What do algorithms taste like?

Some time ago I spoke at a two day conference organised by Flo Longhorn and Les Staves which explored the past, present and future of special education for people with profound and multiple learning difficulties. The stand-out moment of that conference for me was when Les Staves spoke of using the national curriculum to ‘flavour’ Read More …

On Symbols

Symbols have been around for many years and it’s very rare for me to visit a school where they are not using one symbol set or another to support their students. From the earliest days when colleagues used to physically draw pictures over words with pencils, the use of symbols has provided support for early Read More …