It’s great to see that the excellent DocsPlus Chromebook app has been updated to incorporate the DocReader and customisable ‘Exam Mode’ settings introduced earlier in the Windows and Mac versions of the software. These exciting additions will facilitate the use of the app in exams for those students who qualify for additional access arrangements.
If you are already using the app, then it will automatically be updated. If you don’t yet have the app and would like a free copy, please email us at email@example.com.
for Chromebook trial success
ASN team at Cathkin High School, a mainstream secondary school in South
Lanarkshire, supports students with a wide range of needs. including learners
with dyslexia, ADHD and autism. The team has been trialling the DocsPlus
Jensen, Principal Teacher of ASN, describes the difference that DocsPlus has
made to the students’ literacy output in a short space of time:
“There’s no doubt that DocsPlus had a massive impact on the pupils
during our trial. It improved their self-esteem, confidence and motivation with
writing tasks. Certainly in the English department we found that their level of
writing improved significantly. The letters the pupils wrote were comfortably
at level three – before this, these pupils would have been producing work at an
early level two, so there was definitely a tangible improvement in the quality
of their written work.”
were some lovely comments from the students too:
“The spellchecker really helped. It helped me believe in myself,
and gave me confidence with my writing.”
You can learn more about the trial here.
WordQ for Chrome from Quillsoft is a great tool for helping struggling writers. This app (deliberately not an extension) is robust, works offline, and integrates well with Google Drive. It’s the best low-cost solution we’ve come across during our extensive sweep of available tools.
If you’re needing to offer your students simple, free text to speech to support their reading of web pages or PDFs – or any other digital text for that matter – ClaroRead is a really good tool. It’s unobtrusive, and, once it’s set up for your student, it doesn’t require much attention.
You can download the extension from the Chrome Web Store and once installed this icon will show at the top of your screen.
Clicking it will open the discreet Control Panel which allow you to configure the tool to suit yourself or your student.
e.g. If you tick the settings like this your student can simply highlight text to hear it read aloud.
Experiment with the settings to suit your user – e.g. switching on Click and play will change the control panel accordingly. Watch a demo video here.
Using ClaroRead text to speech to support writing.
e.g. Students can also hear what they’re writing as they type.
We at ATSS have always loved Book Creator and have suggested its use and trained numerous folks to use it and embed it into all sorts of curricular areas over a number of years. Book Creator has continuously developed over time onto different platforms and to offer additional tools and features.
This most recent development opens up an new world of possibilities for teachers to create interactive resources for their students while providing pupils with a fantastic work space in which they can showcase their work no matter (almost) what format it exists in.