Today I finally got to meet her. I have to say I was nervous. Frankly, I have no experience with adaptive technology, though I have always wanted to be more versed on it, the opportunity and the funds never seemed to be available.
So while still in my car, I said a prayer and asked to be of service, that there is something that I can do to help her. I needed to remember this is not about my inexperience, but about my strengths, and hers. She knows her environment and how to manipulate it, I just need to become her student as well as a teacher.
I enter the classroom to broad smiles from everyone (feeling truly wanted in your job is a wonderful feeling). There she was, the owner of the warmest eyes I have ever seen, smiling brightly and ready to learn.
The Tobii she is using is a loaner, this one does not have Wifi and that can be incredibly frustrating for a teen who needs access to resources to learn, research or just have basic communication. In order to teach her today we had to move to 3 different classes just to find a drop that would give her internet access.
The thing I learned is she is just a teen, who loves Facebook and Youtube (Go figure!). She likes Keith Urban, so I have found a kindred spirit. I also learned today that even though the Tobii is an amazing piece of technology, she would often lose her written work and would have to email it back and forth with her teachers which is cumbersome. This is where I finally feel like I can help, Google Drive and the Chrome browser is going to be a game changer for her. By the time I left she had already shared a document with her teacher.
On our next visit we started calibrating Chrome to save my new student time. We now have her signed into Chrome, and have pinned tabs for her, so she no longer needs to go through the considerable task of logging in to email, calendar or even Weebly (yes she will be blogging. From the moment she opens Chrome it will remember where she has gone, and will have her most important tabs open for her.