Stage Two AIO 1_3.p65
Stage Two
Language Readiness
About this Stage
In Stage Two, the learner is exposed to a richer language
experience. He learns that objects have names and that actions
have words to express them. The learner is not asked to
identify objects, but simply to be a sponge and absorb information. This Stage develops receptive language and prelinguistic skills.
About the Software
Finding software at this Stage can be challenging because we
are moving from a content-light to a content-rich environment. Keep in mind that you still need to consider the appropriate access device and procedures. In addition to using
software titles recommended for Stage Two, look for menu
settings to help you modify Stage One software for Stage Two
learning.
Look for software that offers brief, repetitive, and consistent
learner prompts. Use the type of prompt (auditory, visual or
multisensory) proven successful during Stage One so that the
interaction does not confuse or distract the learner from the
content. As in Stage One, reward the learner’s use of the
device. If he randomly activates a target by using his access
device, reinforce the language content, whether or not the
selection was deliberate. Say, for example, “Look, that’s a
dog!”
Continue to use age-appropriate software. For example,
software presenting traditional nursery rhyme content would
be most appropriate for younger children, whereas software
depicting popular music might be more appropriate for teens
and adults. Some software allows you to customize the content by adding digital photos of things that are personally
familiar to the learner.
Stages
Stage Two – 1
Some aspects of the learner’s behavior may be measured and
recorded within the software. For example, some software
programs keep track of the learner’s time on task. You can
create a portfolio of observations so that improvement can be
noted across several behaviors simultaneously and over time.
While raw data may be collected for consideration of the
learner’s progress, conditions for performance and content
presentation must be carefully tracked over time. We can only
expect a learner to make use of vocabulary or language to
which he has been repeatedly exposed. In short, a learner will
not understand the meaning of a word or concept unless he
has seen numerous examples.
Many other conditions in the learning environment should
also be considered. These include
v the type of prompt or cue, which occurs before the learner
v
v
v
v
Software
Selection
Tips
responds;
the type of reinforcement or feedback, which happens
after the learner has responded;
the position of the device;
the screen presentation (animation or no animation,
number of objects shown, etc.);
the drawn or photographic representation; and so on.
At Stage Two, look for software that offers:
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
2 – Stage Two
a variety of objects and actions that are named
a consistent way of naming objects and actions
no requirement for the learner to identify objects
different representations of objects: photographs,
drawings, color symbols, etc.
text and/or symbol labels
the capability to be customized with pictures or symbols that are meaningful and familiar
opportunities for learners to imitate actions
age-appropriate graphics and animation
built-in access features for the learner’s best
method of input
Stages
Relevant Issues
Building Receptive Vocabulary
The Stage Two learner has mastered the Cause and Effect
behavior at Stage One. However, because he is not yet likely to
be talking or vocalizing for a purpose, it is important to consider the language environment.
During Stage Two the learner builds a language-based foundation for learning for the rest of his life. The focus is on building
an understanding of words and concepts. Language learning
is a continuous process. Learners first become aware that
language is made up of individual words, that words are
made up of sounds, and that words and sounds convey
meaning. At first, the learner does not understand language,
but does respond to sounds. Constant exposure to communication patterns, such as turn-taking, helps learners understand
language use. Even though the learner is not using words and
there is no intentional communication, he is still learning how
the language patterns and interactions work.
A learner’s ability to comprehend language, to process information, and to learn educational material provides us with
information that helps us make decisions about communication skills development. Before we can expect a learner to
communicate effectively, he must be exposed to and understand words and symbols. Once he understands a word or
symbol, then he can apply it, or use it to express himself at a
later Stage.
A key strategy in developing emerging literacy skills is to very
deliberately expose the learner to all forms of written communication, including text and symbols, even though he is not
yet reading or communicating. We call this creating a printrich environment. For years it has been understood that
exposing learners to all forms of emerging literacy that are
meaningful promotes language acquisition (King-DeBaun and
Musselwhite, 1997). Many believe that the primary literacy
experiences begin during infancy. Consider, for example,
parents who read bedtime stories to very young toddlers well
before they even think about teaching their children to read.
Stages
Stage Two – 3
Emerging literacy is founded on the belief that exposing
developing learners to the skills needed in order to learn to
read and communicate well will result in a natural development of related language-based skills.
Pairing objects, photographs and symbols with text is believed
to help a learner recognize that word or symbol without the
picture at a later literacy phase. This will also help learners
develop an understanding of symbols in the environment,
which they may later need for communication.
Stage
Two
Focus:
• exposure
to named
objects and
actions
• continued
control over
the input
device
Language readiness happens because of repeated exposure to
new things and their names. The key is to create appropriate
exposure to language patterns and vocabulary that the learner
is either already beginning to understand or needs to learn. It
is important to involve a speech/language pathologist who is
an expert on receptive language to help determine the
learner’s ability to comprehend the language level incorporated in the program. Finding and customizing the right
content helps to build and document the vocabulary understood by the learner. For example, if the learner is presented
with a series of pictures, be sure that some of the pictures
include people or objects that are familiar to him.
Phonemic Awareness Begins
Research has shown the importance of exposing learners to
both the sounds of words and their labels (Cunningham, 2000;
King-DeBaun and Musselwhite, 1997). Words are made up of
a distinct combination of sounds. In order for learners to
eventually learn to read and write successfully, a strong
foundation in phonics knowledge is critical. The ability to
hear how sounds work is rooted in exposure—listening to
sounds over and over to build familiarity.
One component of phonemic awareness is the ability to hear
when words rhyme. That ability is developed through repeated exposure to rhyming words and patterns, mostly
through story books, poems, chants, finger plays, nursery
rhymes and music. The ability to recite and/or recognize
nursery rhymes is one of the best indications of a learner’s
potential to read. Research in the area of emerging literacy
tells us that the rhythm and rhyme inherent in nursery rhymes
are important vehicles for the beginning development of
phonemic awareness (Cunningham, 2000).
4 – Stage Two
Stages
Once learners can hear rhymes, they begin to isolate word
patterns. This skill will ultimately become an important early
reading skill, as learners start to read rhyming words by
changing the beginning sound and making rhyming pattern
sounds.
Adult Guidance
It is very important to select the right software, and then to
plan how best to use the software to stimulate language
acquisition within a consistent and stimulating environment.
Allow the learner’s level of interest and attention to set the
amount of time on task, unless medical needs dictate otherwise. Learners may skip around in the program, repeat targets
over and over, or set their own pace. Try not to interfere other
than to repeat the vocabulary being presented. Do not ask
questions to check for understanding at this Stage. Your
interactions center around reinforcing access behavior as well
as the target vocabulary as it is presented, and offering extension activities as discussed below.
The Emotional Side of Learning
The key to success at this Stage is being consistent with the
use of language in the environment. Take time to label objects
verbally, confirming what the software is presenting to the
learner and pointing out the same object in the more immediate environment. This will help the learner generalize his
understanding of a word and his comfort with its use. (For
additional ideas on generalization, see the Extension Activities
that follow.)
Stage One learning did not involve significant content, but
Stage Two learning is all about building the language foundation needed to understand every other successive Stage.
Patiently offering the information without expecting a response requires persistence. Learners are building a language
foundation upon which the rest of the Stages depend.
Stages
Stage Two – 5
Extension Activities
Representation of Objects
Language is representative of real objects and actions. Pictures
or symbols in isolation carry limited meaning. Therefore,
activities to extend understanding are important. We want
learners to understand that the object is the same in a photograph, in a representational drawing, and in real life. Is an
apple always red? No! We have to provide opportunities for
learners to develop an understanding of the nuances in the
ways that words can work.
Have real objects nearby that are the same as the ones that the
learner sees in the software program. When the program
names the object, present that object to the learner immediately and name it again, thus extending understanding.
Finally, pair the object with both the text label and its representational symbol for learners who will eventually need to
use symbols. Do the same with actions and concepts.
Consistent exposure to real objects helps shape the learner
toward a more deliberate use of the language connected to the
object. It also creates a more generalized understanding of a
concept, helping the learner move from understanding a
drawing or photograph to connecting it to the real object,
action or tangible characteristic.
Familiar Objects in New Settings
Seeing the object used in other settings is also important. Play
games, read books and sing songs that use the same words in
other settings, thus extending language understanding. For
example, if the learner is working on the names for animals,
show pictures in the software, read animal books, sing “Old
MacDonald,” and take a trip to a farm. Such activities will
help develop a full understanding of the consistent use of
words across settings and activities.
Identify objects by name when you discuss what’s going on in
the environment. Say, for example, “The children are playing
on the swings” as you pass through the park. This gives the
learner exposure to language appropriate for that context.
6 – Stage Two
Stages
Imitation Skills
Another dimension of interaction with the learner is to foster
imitation skills. A learner’s ability to imitate actions is very
important at this stage of development. Linguistically, he
begins to recognize that gestures can convey meaning, even if
he cannot yet verbalize words or actions on his own.
Cognitively, the learner is able to reproduce what he sees,
either on the computer screen or in his environment. This may
be the first time that you can observe that the learner is absorbing and responding to content.
To encourage imitation skills, give the learner opportunities to
imitate simple actions. Sing songs (for example, “Wheels on
the Bus”) or say rhymes (for example, “Eeensie Weensie
Spider”) that can be accompanied by hand movements. You
can also use software that presents easily-imitated actions.
While the music is playing within the electronic learning
environment, hand gestures could accompany the experience
within the real world environment.
The Learner’s World
Label objects in the learner’s world with text, drawings and/
or symbols. Each text label should be significant, helping the
learner understand that the label symbolizes a concept. A text
label, paired with a picture, may help learners understand the
relationship between an object and its printed name. These
labels serve to represent objects or actions just as spoken
language does, and promote the association between the
spoken word and the representational symbol. For example,
label the real toilet with a picture of the symbol representing a
toilet. This way the learner begins to associate the spoken
word with actions and the symbol representing that specific
object.
This is the time to introduce a single message device labeled
with one symbol. With a light-tech device such as this, the
learner can deliver simple prerecorded messages with the
press of a button. Examples of effective single message devices
are the BIGmack® and the One-Step by AbleNet™, Inc.
Stages
Stage Two – 7
Create personalized vocabulary-building activities specific to
the words and objects that the learner needs most. For example, use a word processor or any other software that offers
a slide show feature that lets you advance to the next slide
(page) with a single click (switch press). Insert picture files so
that each switch press presents an image of a special person,
favorite toy or pet, or any other word. Your interaction with
the learner doesn’t change. As the learner “turns” the pages,
name the person or object, then encourage the next switch
press (click).
About the Learner
Observable Characteristics
Watch for indications that the learner
v uses eye gaze and/or utterances to convey communicative
v
v
v
v
v
v
intent
uses other personal, familiar behavioral cues to convey
communicative intent
uses body language and/or head orientation to convey
recognition of objects
uses the device with improved access performance
attempts to imitate movement and/or meaningful gestures
indicates awareness of language through facial expression
(such as recognition of a familiar person’s name)
uses consistent behaviors to interact with the software
even though the content is now richer than it was at Stage
One
Competency Goals
The primary focus at this Stage is the development of receptive vocabulary through computer access. Opportunities to
become a communication-ready learner center around patient
presentation of consistent language examples.
There are few measurable goals at this Stage, though the
amount of time spent on task and consistent device use are
good indications of successful exposure to language. In addition, effective behavioral cues such as body language and
head orientation indicate whether or not the learner is actively
involved and engaged.
8 – Stage Two
Stages
Sample IEP Objectives
Written objectives for the learner at this Stage are again based
primarily on observed behaviors. However, it is important to
begin to consider the onset of deliberate communication
efforts. We are focused on continuing to develop access device
skills, but at the same time, we begin to extend the activity
with opportunities to explore language-rich content. While the
learner explores, observers monitor the content exposure and
watch for further skill development in the use of the access
device. If the device use remains reliable, then Stage Two skills
are developing. If the behavior or device use revert to those
demonstrated at Stage One, then the language exposure is
ineffective.
Given name of program (accessible software with language
stimulating targets), the learner will
v activate the device to continue presentation of content
with fewer than 5 prompts per session
v demonstrate attention to the content by head tilt, utterance, or eye gaze
v indicate humor or interest by head tilt, utterance, or eye
gaze
v indicate interest by extending the time he pays attention to
the task per session
v indicate recognition of familiar content of customized
program (with material from the learner’s life)
v remain consistent with reliable use of access device
These objectives are measured by the management system
provided by the software or by adult observation.
Stages
Stage Two – 9
Stage Two References
Bennett, Randy. 1988. Reinventing Assessment: Speculations on the Future of Large Scale
Assessment. Policy Information Center of Educational Testing Service.
Berdine, W. H. and Meyer, S. A. 1987. Assessment in Special Education. Boston, MA:
Little, Brown and Company.
Beukelman, D. and Mirenda, P. 1992. Augmentative and Alternative Communication:
Management of Several Communication Disorders in Children and Adults. Baltimore, MD:
Paul H. Brooks.
Chomsky, Noam. 1986. Knowledge of Language: Its Nature, Origin, and Use. Westport, CT:
Praeger Publishers.
Chomsky, Noam. 1990. “On the Nature, Use and Acquisition of Language.” Mind and
Cognition: A Reader. 627-646. Ed. William G. Lycan. Oxford, England: Blackwell Publishers
Cunningham, Patricia. 2000. Phonics They Use: Words for Reading and Writing. Boston, MA:
Allyn & Bacon/Longman.
Glenn, Sharon and Decussate, Denise. 1998. Handbook of Augmentative and Alternative
Communication. San Diego, CA: Singular Publishing Group, Inc.
In CASE
The Newsletter for the Council of Administrators of Special Education, a Division of the
Council for Exceptional Children, 1920 Association Drive, Reston, VA 22191
Journal of Special Education Leadership (issue referenced: Volume 12, Number 2, Fall 1999)
Council of Administrators of Special Education, CASE, Inc., 615 16th Street NW, Albuquerque, NM 87104
King-DeBaun, Pati and Musslewhite, Caroline. 1997. Emergent Literacy Success: Merging
Technology and Whole Language for Learners with Disabilities. Park City, UT: Creative Communicating.
Masher, J. 1991. Language and Literacy. Ypsilante, MI: The High/Scope Press.
Sharakis-Doyle, Elizabeth. 1988. Language Development, Speech Development and
Cognitive Development. MA: Communication Skill Builders.
Skinner, B. F. 1969. Contingencies of Reinforcement: A Theoretical Analysis. New York, NY:
Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc.
TAM Connector (issue referenced: Volume 12, Number 1, Fall 1999)
Council for Exceptional Children, 1920 Association Drive, Reston, VA 22191
10 – Stage Two
Stages
An Overview of the Activities
About the Stage Two Activities
During Stage Two the learner builds a foundation for learning
for the rest of his life. This Stage gives a learner the opportunity to take in the possibilities, to be exposed to the ways that
words and concepts work, and to apply these words and
concepts in his environment.
The Stage Two assessment activities are designed to promote
exposure to words and rhyming patterns. Words that match
the pictures on the screen are used in original rhymes that tell
stories. The purpose is to expose the learner not only to words
paired with pictures, but also to the rhyming patterns that are
associated with the pictures and stories. This all begins by
focusing his attention on words and letters.
Stage Two activities present language to learners without
requiring a response. The activities present concepts in many
different ways to give learners several opportunities to become familiar with the words. They hear rhymes about words
and they see a label for the target word, even though they are
not yet ready to read the words.
For more information about the research supporting these
activities, refer to the Stage Two chapter from the Stages
book, reprinted here on pages 1–9.
Starting Stage Two
Before using the Stage Two activities with a learner, take a few
minutes to become familiar with them yourself. When you are
ready to use the activities with a learner, go to the section
“Presenting the Activities” (page 27).
The main screen for Stage Two presents information about
this Stage and leads you to the Stage Two Activities.
Stages
Stage Two – 11
• Click About this Stage to learn more about Stage Two.
•
Click About the Stage Two Learner to learn more about
the learner at this Stage. This information is covered in
more detail starting on page 8.
• Click on Assessment Activities to begin the activities.
Entering the Learner’s Name
When you choose to start the Stage Two assessment activities,
you will first be asked to enter the learner’s name. This name
will be printed on the report that is generated when the
activity is completed.
Type the learner’s name in the text box in the center of the
screen, then click the Continue button or press <Return>
(Macintosh) or <Enter> (Windows) to go on.
Setting Preferences
There are several preference settings that affect all the activities. The current settings are displayed at the bottom of the
menu screens. Refer to page 22 for explanations of these
settings and information on how to change them.
12 – Stage Two
Stages
Choosing an Activity Type
There are three types of Stage Two assessment activities:
Nouns, Verbs, and Attributes. Each of these activities exposes
the learner to different types of words or word combinations.
The first words that learners understand are typically nouns.
For example, the names of pets, foods, and family members
are often initial vocabulary. Learners are exposed to new
words as they are used in the context of their environment.
The comprehension and application of these words become
more understandable as parents use them in familiar situations. For example, a mother might identify each article of
clothing as she is dressing her child every morning.
Next comes the understanding of action words, or verbs, such
as “eat”, “play”, or “dress.” Again, use of these words in
familiar settings helps the learner comprehend them. For
example, as a mother dresses her child, she might say, “Put on
your shoes” or “Pull off your hat” (even if she is performing
the action herself).
Many words might have been selected for the content in the
Stage Two assessment activities. In designing these activities,
we elected to use the words identified on the Dolch Word List.
This list organizes up to 75 percent of all words used in school
books, library books, newspapers, and magazines into parts of
speech categories and reading grade levels. While reading was
certainly not our focus, we wanted to select words to use in
Stage Two activities that the learner would need for academic
success at a later Stage. Early exposure is a known advantage
for learners with language and cognitive delays.
Based on research on language development, we first selected nouns, and then we selected verbs from the list that
would help us create stories to accompany the exposure to
the language and vocabulary. These words are listed on page
17.
The Attributes activities expand upon the words introduced
in the Nouns activities. Primarily, we begin to expose the
learner to word combinations. Learners are presented with
descriptors or attributes related to the target word. This
provides an introduction to the patterns and sounds associated with combining words. Learners at Stage Two are ready
Stages
Stage Two – 13
to be exposed to descriptors such as color or size so they can
begin to see how the language model works. They are not
expected to understand the concepts of size and color until a
later Stage; however, the activities are appropriate for receptive exposure to language at Stage Two.
Select a button to choose the activity type.
Nouns and Verbs: Single Words
These activities present words in isolation as an introduction
to word meaning. The target noun is identified through text;
recorded sound; and a representative photograph, drawing, or
symbol. The verbs are illustrated through text and animations
or movies that identify actions. The activities increase the
learner’s exposure to words and word identification skills.
Note: If QuickTime® is installed on your computer, you will
see a video clip for some of the Verbs activities. If QuickTime
is not installed, you will see a sequence of photographs that
conveys the meaning of the verb.
Attributes: Word Combinations
These activities present words in combination with each other
to expand on word meaning and to expose the learner to
language use. The nouns that were previously presented in
isolation are now combined with attributes or descriptions.
14 – Stage Two
Stages
The attributes presented for each noun are size (“large” or
“small”), color, and quantity (“These are cats”), showing
multiple representations of the object. This helps the learner
begin to generalize word meaning across levels of representation; that is, a drawing of a truck has the same meaning as a
photograph of a truck.
Choosing a Level of Representation
The next step is to choose a level of representation, or the way
in which the objects are displayed.
At this language level, the goal is to help the learner understand the relationship of the word to the object. Repetitive
descriptions and labeling of objects in the environment help to
build core vocabulary. A typical activity at this language level
is to line up an array of favorite items and then touch and
label each object.
Pictures and photographs are symbols that make a direct
connection to the object and convey the same meaning. They
represent the real object and often look exactly the same as the
real object. Pictures or photographs of familiar objects can help
a learner generalize concepts. Present the learner with pictures
that offer a change in attributes of the object that is depicted.
For example, show pictures of different colored dogs, and
label each one by saying the word “dog.”
Drawings are one step removed from the direct connection
with a real object or photograph. They are useful in helping
learners generalize attributes of objects and concepts. In
addition, successfully understanding drawings helps a learner
move toward symbolic understanding.
Symbols are the highest level of representation of a word,
concept, or object. In order to understand symbols, the learner
has to make the connection that one thing, like the symbol for
“dog”, can stand for another thing, the actual animal. The
learner begins to understand that the object exists because an
image for it is stored in his memory. Even if the object is not
physically present, he can understand its representation.
Stages
Stage Two – 15
Select a button to choose the level of representation.
Photos
Select Photos to present language concepts using photographs
(for Nouns and Attributes) or videos (for Verbs). This choice
offers the learner the greatest level of realism. It is generally
the easiest form for learners to recognize objects.
Drawings
Select Drawings to present the language concepts in the form
of color drawings. This type of representation may be more
difficult for the learner to understand initially, as the drawings
are not as realistic as photographic images.
Symbols
Select Symbols to present the language concepts in the form
of communication symbols. The images are from the Picture
Communication Symbols (PCS) libraries from Mayer-Johnson
Company, used with permission. These symbols are commonly used by learners with special needs for communication. It may be important for the learner to become familiar
with these symbols for use in the future.
Note: Use the Back button to return to the previous screen to
make a different selection. (This button is not available if you
choose to do the same type of activity after viewing the
report, as changing the settings or choices at that point
would invalidate the next report.)
16 – Stage Two
Stages
Choosing a Category
After you select the level of representation, choose a category
for the activities: Animals, Toys, or Vehicles.
Animals
The animals presented are familiar pets or farm animals.
In the activities for the Nouns category, each animal appears
by itself with a descriptive rhyme. After all five nouns are
presented individually, a screen presents them together in a
scene to show the category. In the activities for the Verbs
category, the animal performs the action listed below in an
animation or video.
cat
dog
bird
cow
horse
drink
run
sing
eat
jump
Toys
The toys were selected as being familiar objects in early
childhood and special education classrooms. In the activities
for the Nouns category, each toy appears by itself with a
descriptive rhyme. After all five nouns are presented individually, a screen presents together in a scene to show the
category. In the activities for the Verbs category, the toy
performs the action listed below in an animation or video.
Stages
Stage Two – 17
ball
block
crayon
switch toy
bubbles
play
fall
draw
walk
blow
Vehicles
The vehicles presented are familiar forms of transportation.
In the activities for the Nouns category, each vehicle appears
by itself with a descriptive rhyme. After all five nouns are
presented individually, a screen presents together in a scene to
show the category. In the activities for the Verbs category, the
vehicle performs the action listed below in an animation or
video.
car
bus
boat
plane
bike
wash
stop
go
fly
ride
Choosing the Activity
Next, choose the specific activity you wish to use, or choose a
sequence of all activities in the category.
18 – Stage Two
Stages
Each of the Nouns and Verbs activities requires three activations of the input device. Each Attributes activity requires four
activations. You can choose whether to do just one activity or
all activities in a row, depending on the needs of the learner.
As the first activity begins, a prompt is presented. If you
choose to do all activities in a row, an initial prompt is presented at the beginning of the series, but not before each
individual activity within the set.
The learner presses the device to go through the activity. If the
learner does not activate the device within the timeframe
selected in the preference settings, the prompt recurs at that
interval until the learner activates the device (unless you set
the prompt frequency to “Never”).
Don’t skip out
of an activity
that you want
to graph later in
Stages Report
Wizard.
Stages
At the completion of an activity, or at the end of all activities,
you can choose to see a report of the learner’s session. The
report automatically records aspects of the learner’s performance. For information about the reports, see page 30.
To leave an activity before it is completed and go to the
report, select the arrow button in the upper right corner of
the screen. If you exit an activity in this way, you will not be
able to include it in a graph using Stages Report Wizard.
Stage Two – 19
Sample Activity Screens
Nouns
Symbols
Vehicles
Boat
“This is a boat.”
Verbs
Photo
Toys
Bubbles
“Blow, I blow bubbles!”
Attributes
Drawing
Animals
Dog
“This dog is brown.”
20 – Stage Two
Stages
Nouns
Photo
Animals
“These are animals.”
Verbs
Symbol
Vehicles
Bike
“Ride, ride the bike!”
Attributes
Drawing
Toys
Switch Toy
“It is small.”
Stages
Stage Two – 21
Setting and Changing Preferences
There are several preference settings you can change that
affect all the activities. These preferences are also printed on
the reports to serve as a record of the settings used during the
session.
The current preference settings are displayed at the bottom of
the screen. When you change settings, the information in this
display is updated. The settings most recently saved are in
effect when you start Stage Two.
To modify preferences, click the Change Settings button. The
Preferences screen, shown below, will open.
Input Method:
22 – Stage Two
Click a radio button to select the input method the learner
will be using.
•
Choose Mouse if you are using a device to point and
click. This is the initial setting.
•
Choose Touchscreen if you are using a built-in touchscreen or a touchscreen device attached to the monitor.
Stages
•
Choose Switch if you are using any type of switch. Then
select the type of switch you are using.
Select Discover Switch if you are using a Discover:
Switch™ from Madentec Ltd.
The first time you use the Stage Two activities with a
Discover Switch, you will be prompted to select a
setup. This prompt occurs two times: once for the
application that launches Stages and once for the
actual Stages application. For both, choose the setup
named “*Click Only Single Switch” (Macintosh) or
“Click Only Single Switch.sus” (Windows). You will
hear a beep when the Discover Switch activates.
Pressing the Discover Switch too quickly may cause
some switch presses not to be counted. If you hear a
beep, the switch press is counted.
Select IntelliKeys with switch attached if you are
using a switch plugged into IntelliKeys®
(IntelliTools®, Inc.).
The Stages Click overlay, which sends a mouseclick, will automatically load. With Windows, you
must turn on Num Lock and check the “Use
MouseKeys” option in the Accessibility Options
Control Panel.
Choose Standard switch if you are using any other
type of switch. Make sure that the software for your
switch is set to send a mouse-click.
For information on using the Crick USB Switch
Interface, refer to the Q&A section of this binder.
•
Stages
Choose IntelliKeys Keyboard if you are using an
IntelliKeys® keyboard (from IntelliTools®, Inc.). For more
information about using IntelliKeys, refer to the Read Me
file in the Overlays folder on the Stages CD.
Stage Two – 23
Here you will select whether you will use a direct select
method (touching the keyboard) or a switch connected to
IntelliKeys. This setting determines the prompt image
(keyboard or switch) that is displayed and the input
method that is printed in the report. The switch option is
also available on the Switch settings screen.
Windows users must turn on Num Lock and check the
“Use MouseKeys” option in the Accessibility Options
Control Panel.
Type of prompt:
The prompt motivates or encourages the learner to activate
the device to continue. The prompt image displayed matches
the input method selected. Choose from three prompt types.
The initial setting for the prompt type is Multisensory.
Visual Prompt
A visual prompt displays a hand pressing a switch in the
center of the screen. There is no speech or sound accompanying a visual prompt.
Auditory Prompt
An auditory prompt has a spoken prompt, chosen randomly
from a selection of encouraging phrases. There is no visual
cue accompanying an auditory prompt.
Multisensory Prompt
This prompt combines visual and auditory cues.
Length of time between prompts:
You can choose to have a prompt occur every 3, 5, or 10
seconds, or have no prompt at all (a Prompt Frequency of
“Never”). The initial setting is 5 seconds.
24 – Stage Two
Stages
When you have finished choosing preferences, click the Exit
to Activities button at the bottom of the screen.
When you return to the activity choice screen, the settings
shown at the bottom of the screen will reflect the changes
you made.
Stage Two Menus (and exiting Stage Two)
Stage Two offers several menu options, which are available
in the introductory, activity choice and report sections. You
can use the keyboard equivalents listed below during the
activities or at any other time.
Open Onscreen Keyboard: This menu item appears only
when Stages is run on a Mercury or a MiniMerc computer
(from Assistive Technology, Inc.). Choose this option when
you need to type and an external keyboard is not available.
Start Over: Return to the opening screen. You will lose any
data that has been collected for the learner.
Save: Save the current report information to a file (see the
section beginning on page 33 for more information). This
option is available only in the report sections.
Macintosh: zS
Windows: Ctrl-S
Print: Print the current screen.
Macintosh: zP
Windows: Ctrl-P
Choose a New Stage: (All-in-One Stages CD only)
Return to the main Stages menu. (You can also select the Exit
Stage Two button at the end of the report.)
Macintosh: zN
Windows: Ctrl-N
Quit: (Stage Two CD only)
Exit Stage Two. (You can also select the Exit Stage Two
button at the end of the report.)
Macintosh: zQ
Windows: Ctrl-Q
Stages
Stage Two – 25
26 – Stage Two
Stages
Presenting the Activities
Now that you have explored the activities on your own, you
are ready to use them with a learner. It is important to use the
assessment activities as intended and also to set up an appropriate environment for the learner. This section will help you
and your learner get the most out of the assessment activities.
When and How to Use the Assessment Activities
Stages assessment activities are not designed for everyday
practice. They are designed to help you measure progress
within each Stage of development.
Stage Two activities help you observe the learner as he begins
to acquire receptive vocabulary. With the activities, you can
also explore various levels of representation and prompting
styles to determine the combinations that elicit the most
accurate and consistent learner behavior.
Stage Two skills are also called receptive language abilities.
Testing for receptive language is difficult and largely a behavioral measure. By noting how long the learner spends on the
activities and the number of prompts needed (both measured
in the report), as well as watching for behavioral indications
that the learner is independently exploring the activities, you
can begin to draw conclusions about the language and cognitive development of the learner. Then, use the chart at the
end of this section to identify appropriate software to use for
related practice.
The Stages philosophy advocates a competency-based observation approach to assessment. Knowing exactly what a
learner can do gives you the opportunity to design a custom
curriculum perfectly tailored for that individual.
Use the accompanying Observation Form, along with performance records printed from within each activity, to provide
the foundation for generating an informal competency-based
assessment report. As the learner uses the activities, make
observations on the forms that have been developed to address this Stage. Use the onscreen reports as well as written
Stages
Stage Two – 27
notes you make on the Observation Form provided on page
41. Add your own category of observation on the form under
“Additional Observations.”
Use these results to determine which Stage is appropriate and
to select target skills toward which the learner will work to
achieve. Then put the Stages activities away while the learner
works in a practice environment of appropriate software from
many manufacturers, which are recommended for that Stage.
After the learner has worked and practiced the target set of
skills, return to the Stage Two assessment activities. Administer the activity again and compare your results. Is the learner
making progress? Is the learner ready to move to another
Stage?
Alternate working with Stage Two assessment activities for
assessment and the third party practice software. Keep a
portfolio of the observation results as well as any visual
documentation available (photos or video). You can also keep
any printouts that might be available from the practice software to document steps toward achievement.
Preparing the Environment
The environment for evaluating a learner’s functioning stage
should be a familiar one. It should be the place where he
typically works, lives, and plays. Unfamiliar environments are
a curiosity—a learner will attend to the details around him
that are different more than he will attend to the activity we
want him to use. We want to avoid as many new variables as
we can, helping the learner feel the comfort of the cognitively
familiar environment. When the assessment activity is introduced, he can then concentrate on the new behavior or content rather than on environmental distracters.
Because the Stages philosophy is sensitive to all facets of the
learning process, consider the physical comfort of the learner.
Make sure that the assistive technology team gives input to
the access device selection and proper positioning of the
learner in the physical environment. Be sure the learner’s
environment is optimal for success.
28 – Stage Two
Stages
• Can the learner see the screen without glare or visual
strain?
• Is the volume of sound from the computer adjusted to a
comfortable level?
• Is the learner seated at the computer properly?
• Is the access device stable and in a position for consistently
reliable use?
• Have the computer control panels been adjusted to maximize learner performance?
• When was the learner’s last meal or snack? Does he have
the proper fuel to work?
• Have necessary medications been administered properly?
In short, consider every aspect of the learner’s physical comfort to be confident that a solid learning environment is
available for optimum learner performance.
Adult Role in the Observation Process
It is important for you to continue to encourage the learner. He
has learned a reliable process control in the learning environment, perhaps for the first time in his life. Taking risks can be
a challenge for anyone, but especially for a learner who has
limited experience with the opportunity to discover.
Your learner now understands that the movement you encourage actually controls the computer reliably. You might begin to
see some experimenting with the access device early in Stage
Two. This exemplifies a combination of behaviors. Some
learners experiment because they are testing the environment
for reliability, while others experiment more from a humorous
perspective. It’s fun to be silly once you know you are safe
and reliably in control. Do whatever you can to orient the
learner toward the Stage Two activities and help him make the
connection that he is now in control of a content-rich learning
environment!
Stage Two begins the foundation of language development.
Learning is no longer just about process: it’s beginning to be
more about a rich and interesting content. This is the start of
real learning opportunities for the learner, because access to a
curriculum means that he can be fully engaged in both the
content and the process.
Stages
Stage Two – 29
Additional Verbal Prompts
Use verbal prompts both to cue and to reinforce the target
behavior of access to the device and computer. Here are some
sample verbal prompts for the adult to say that are appropriate for the assessment activities presented.
For Device Control
Press it!
You can do it!
Reach for your switch (or device).
Do it again!
Good for you!
For Nouns or Verbs Activities
Look at those (name of category)!
See the bus/dog/bubbles!
What fun toys!
Look at that sailboat go!
For Attributes Activities
See how big that horse is!
Look at all the cars!
See the yellow bus!
All those bikes are so small.
Viewing and Using the Reports
At the end of the activities, you can see a report of the
learner’s session. You can look for a learner’s improvement
over time by administering the activities again and reviewing
the resulting reports.
The reports
help you
watch for
improvement
over time.
The report is automatically generated using information about
the settings used and data gathered about the learner’s performance. At the top of the report is information based on the
general settings. The bottom portion of the report displays
specific data that was gathered during the session.
Learner’s Name:
This is the name that you entered when you started the activities. You can edit the name on this report now by clicking in
the name text box and changing the name.
30 – Stage Two
Stages
Input Method:
This is the access method that you selected in the Preference
Settings screen. If you did not change this setting, the default
value of Mouse is displayed.
Level of Representation:
This is the method you selected of representing the words on
the screen: Photo, Drawing, or Symbol.
Prompt Frequency:
This is the frequency of prompt that you selected in the Preference Settings screen. If you did not change this setting, the
default value of 5 seconds is displayed.
Prompt Type:
This is the type of prompt that you selected in the Preference
Settings screen. If you did not change this setting, the default
value of Multisensory is displayed.
Category:
This is the category of words you selected: Animals, Toys, or
Vehicles.
Date and Time:
The date and time that the report was generated is displayed
at the bottom of the screen. If this information is not correct,
check the setting of your computer’s clock.
Stages
Stage Two – 31
Number of Required Presses:
This number indicates the minimum number of times the
learner needs to activate the device in order to complete the
activity. The Nouns and Verbs activities require 3 presses; the
Attributes activities require 4 presses.
Number of Presses:
How many times did the learner press and release the device?
Each press is counted, even if it occurs while an animation or
sound is playing.
Number of Prompts:
How many prompts were presented during the activity? The
initial prompt is not counted.
Time on Activity:
How long did the learner spend on the activity? The timer
starts when the first screen for the activity opens and ends
when the last screen of the activity closes. The duration is
displayed in minutes and seconds. Example: 1:06 = 1 minute
and 6 seconds.
Did Learner Finish:
Did the learner complete the activity? If the learner continued
to press the device as many times as was necessary to finish
the activity, the word “Yes” appears in this column. If the
adult used the arrow at the upper right of the screen to cancel
the activity, the word “No” is displayed.
Printing the Report
Click the Print button or choose Print from the File menu to
print the report screen. This report looks different than a
printout of the disk file, which is only text; however, the
information is the same. You can also use the keyboard command for your computer:
Macintosh:
Windows:
32 – Stage Two
zP
Ctrl-P
Stages
Saving the Report
To save the report, click the Save button. You can also use
the keyboard command for your computer.
Macintosh:
Windows:
zP
Ctrl-P
A dialog box appears with a file name that describes the
content of the report. You can change the name of the report
if you prefer. On a Windows computer, it is important to
keep the “.txt” extension at the end of the file name so that it
will be recognized as a WordPad document. If a file with the
same name already exists in the folder, you can either replace
it with the contents of the new file or choose a different file
name.
STAGES REPORT
WIZARD
automatically
graphs the data
saved in your
reports.
The first time during each session that you save a report, a
default file location is used. On a Windows computer, this
location is usually the “C:\My Documents” folder. If that
folder does not exist, the Desktop is used instead. On the
Macintosh, this location is usually the main folder of the
hard drive. (If the location is the CD and not the hard drive,
refer to the Technical Q&A section of this binder for instructions on how to change this.)
You can browse to select a different folder for your reports
and even create a new folder. Future reports that you save
during the same session will use the save location you select.
If you are using Stages Report Wizard, save all the learner’s
reports to his or her folder in the My Stages Reports folder.
For information on importing the saved report files into other
applications, refer to the Technical Q&A section of this
binder.
Stages
Stage Two – 33
Finishing the Report
If you are viewing the report information for a single activity,
click the Summary Report button to view all the data for
activities done with the current settings. (Data is erased for
choices that allow you to modify the activity or preferences
so that the reports always present data that accurately
matches the settings that are displayed.)
After viewing and printing the report, click the Done button at
the bottom of the screen. You can then:
• do more activities of the same type (keep current data);
• change to a different learner (erase current data);
• change to a different activity or change settings (erase
current data);
• quit the program.
34 – Stage Two
Stages
Observing the Learner
This section will help you understand how to observe a
learner and use the information gained from these observations.
Making Observations
Generally, the learner should not see you recording his performance. It’s ideal if another adult who is commonly in the
learning environment can record the observations. One adult
can encourage the learner and the other can record behaviors
during the assessment activity without being noticed by the
learner.
When two adults in the same environment observe the same
exact behaviors, that then validates the accuracy of the data
that is collected during the session. Finally, an ideal environment would include an unobtrusive video or still camera.
Documenting a learner’s performance allows the IEP team to
observe results as part of the reporting and assessment process.
Is the learner properly positioned in the learning environment? Is the learner comfortable? Only if you are confident
that the environmental conditions are conducive for evaluation can the results be considered.
Interpreting Observation Results and Report Data
Use the Observation Form to record learner behavior during
the activities. Watch for the behaviors identified on the forms;
add your own under “Additional Observations.”
Watch for body language as a communication signal from the
learner. Does the learner appear interested in the software?
There are many behaviors that indicate purposeful listening.
These include attention to the sound source, smiles, giggles,
eye gaze, anticipatory body language such as a lean or head
tilt, and deliberate movement to activate the access device. A
more subtle behavior might be getting upset when an activity
ends.
Stages
Stage Two – 35
Interpreting Access Data
Is the learner working for a longer time than he did before? Is
there body language that makes you believe that the learner is
engaged in the activity? For example, does he make eye
contact and smile when a familiar object appears? Is he orienting his head toward the screen? Is there a joyful utterance?
These are indications that the learner is involved in the work
in a constructive way, paying attention and gaining benefit
from the exposure to language.
Consider the learner’s interactions with the content presented.
The learner has the opportunity to interact with names of
objects and actions, typical beginning content for an early
receptive language experience. However, the Stage Two
activities also present important concepts to the learner as
well—concepts such as adjectives, sounds associated with
objects, categories for objects, and so forth.
Because the content of the Stage Two assessment activity is
designed to be a bit more complex than the typical practice
environment, on one extreme, watch for signs that the learner
might be overwhelmed by too much stimulus language. This
might be indicated by a lack of eye contact, leaning or turning
the head away from the screen. On the other extreme, watch
for signs that the learner is encouraged to initiate more exploration. More purposeful use of the device and staying on task
without prompting tell us that there’s real progress for the
Stage Two learner. This indicates an onset of interest in those
words and concepts in new ways for this learner. If such
deliberate exploration, enthusiastic body language, or an
increase in humorous reactions to the software is evident, the
learner is probably ready to be considered for Stage Three
experiences.
36 – Stage Two
Stages
Interpreting Prompt Data
As we already know, the prompt is the feature in the software that encourages the learner to work independently. For
success at Stage Two, we are looking for indications that the
learner is working independently, and requires fewer prompts
for staying on task or completing a task. Quite simply, compare the results from Stage One to Stage Two in this area, if
Stage One assessment activities were used. You are looking for
two different learner performance results.
First, did one approach lead to better performance? Was it
the visual prompt that kept the learner on task? Or was the
auditory or multisensory environment more effective? Does
the learner respond to one type of prompt more consistently
than others? Make note of this interpretation because you
will use it in selecting which type of prompt to look for when
choosing the practice software.
Second, as suggested, examine the actual number of prompts
needed for the learner to compete the task. If you administered the Stage One assessment, were there fewer or at least
the same number of prompts needed than for Stage One? If so,
the learner might be ready for a Stage Three learning experience. If not, continue to practice in Stage Two software and
administer the Stage Two assessment activity again at a later
time. If you did not administer the Stage One assessment, you
need to watch for indications that the learner is connected
with the experience.
Look for the body language cues already discussed. Does the
learner glance away from the computer and require prompts
to bring his attention back, or does the learner remain focused
on the activity? When the inventory is unfamiliar when first
administered, prompting is likely to be required every time.
After a while, does the learner begin to anticipate the prompts
and activate the software without being reminded? Is there a
display of humor or enjoyment interpreted from the learner’s
behavior when interacting with the activities? These are
indicators that the learner is attending to the software activity,
and benefiting because he understands what is happening on
the screen.
Stages
Stage Two – 37
Interpreting Level of Representation Data
Does the learner seem to prefer or better understand real
pictures, drawn objects or representative symbols? Note that
Stage Two assessment activities offer the opportunity for the
learner to interact with all three approaches to visual representations of language.
The goal is for the learner to generalize across all three representations for a concept. Does the learner understand that the
real photograph of a dog is the same concept as the drawn
picture of a dog and also the representative symbol for dog?
Those representations do not look the same, yet they stand
for the same concept. During Stage Two we are working
toward this understanding. We already know that our
learner is delayed. If he is eventually going to be a communication symbol user, now is the time to teach the learner that
the symbol conveys meaning just as the spoken word does,
and that pictures also can represent the same concept.
When administering the Stage Two assessment activities, do
not have real objects around to distract the learner. However,
if the learner seems to make a connection from something
presented on the screen to something in the environment,
make note of this on your Observation Sheet. For example, a
learner might see a photograph of blocks and then look toward the block area in the classroom. This would indicate that
the learner is indeed making connections and is ready for
Stage Three experiences.
You will need to consider the body language that’s described
above when taking this into account. Review the list of Observable Characteristics for the Stage Two learner (page 8)
and then watch for indications that these behaviors are
occurring.
38 – Stage Two
Stages
Moving to Stage Three
If you administered the Stage One assessment activities, and
the computer-generated report for Stage Two indicates similar
or better performance data than for Stage One, you might
consider moving the learner toward Stage Three. This means
that the learner has remained on task for a longer time, requires fewer prompts, is using his device effectively, and
completes activities reliably. If this is happening, then the
learner is being exposed to language in a very deliberate way.
If you did not administer the Stage One assessment activity,
compare the results from the Stage Two activities administered more than once. It is recommended that after administering the Stage Two assessments, you engage the learner in
a familiar alternative activity. Be sure that the learner is not
too tired. If so, take a break. Then administer the Stage Two
assessment again. Compare the results. Was the learner performance data better the second time? If so, you can interpret this
as an indication that the learner is benefiting from Stage Two
activities and might be ready to try some Stage Three experiences.
As previously mentioned, there is really no way to test for
receptive language. Once you ask a learner to indicate his
understanding of a word or concept, that’s a Stage Three
activity. Therefore, actually testing for Stage Two abilities has
to still be a behavioral measure. If the learner is remaining on
task at the same level of performance effectiveness, however,
the activity has changed from light content to a language rich
experience, and the learner is having a more meaningful
interaction. In order to know if the interactions are resulting in
learning, the experiences must shift toward Stage Three.
Stages
Stage Two – 39
40 – Stage Two
Stages
Observation Form—Stage Two
Learner’s Name
Recorder’s Name
Other Observer’s Name
Date
Setting for Observation
Using informal observation techniques, record the following information so that you can
accurately interpret learner performance.
Assessment Environment:
View the screen on the same eye level as the learner. Is there a glare on the screen?
Yes
No
(If so, adjust window blinds, reposition the computer and learner’s seat, or construct a
shade for the monitor to eliminate the glare.)
Describe the setting:
learner’s regular setting
familiar but not everyday
unfamiliar
Position the learner is facing:
toward the center of the room
away from the center of the room
Are there any distracting objects nearby?
Is the learner properly positioned?
Yes
Yes
No
No
Should these or any other factors be considered when interpreting results?
Copy these pages before recording your observations.
(This form is also provided as a PDF on the Stages CD.)
Stage Two Observation Form
(over)
page 1
1.
Describe the learner’s body language during the assessment activity.
Check what you observe.
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
head tilt or orientation toward the screen
leaning toward the screen
eye gaze toward the screen
eye gaze toward an adult
smile
facial expression indicating familiarity
utterances
Write what you observe:
other personal, familiar behavior
gesture or movement (attempt to)
2.
Did the learner activate the access device without a prompt from you?
Yes
3.
No
If Yes, type of prompt:
Did the learner seem to initiate exploration of the content independently?
Yes
No
What behaviors are you interpreting in order to draw a conclusion?
4.
Did the learner understand that he/she was working to continue a sequence, or to
complete a goal?
Yes
No
5.
What do you think motivated the learner to stay involved and why?
6.
Did the learner seem to prefer:
o
o
o
page 2
real pictures (photographs)
drawn objects
representative symbols
Stage Two Observation Form
What behaviors are you interpreting in order to draw a conclusion?
7.
Did the learner’s behavior change during the assessment (e.g., did the learner begin
to fidget, wiggle in the seat, make few responses, stop responding)?
Yes
No
If so, please describe what happened.
When did the change happen?
Why do you think the behavior changed?
8.
Are there any environmental issues that might affect the data? For example, were
there any objects or sounds that might have distracted the learner or enhanced the
assessment session?
9.
Additional Observations:
Stage Two Observation Form
page 3
Additional Observations (continued):
Place this form and report printouts in the learner’s portfolio.
page 4
Stage Two Observation Form
Practice Software for Stage Two
General Software Considerations
It is important to note that many software programs suggested
can be recommended at more than one Stage. These programs
provide varied content and malleable preference settings that
allow for custom presentations. Refer to the chart pages that
follow to identify keystrokes for changing settings.
A Stage Two
learner is not
yet making
choices.
Make sure
that software
settings are
appropriate.
By making adjustments to such areas as input option or
specific content for a picture identification activity, you can
use the same software program successfully at several Stages.
Refer to the “Also appropriate at:” category in the Software
Comparison Chart that follows.
In addition, you can tailor programs for individual learners.
For example, you may turn off animation for learners who
might have a startle reaction to that event on the screen. Or
you might turn on auditory prompting for learners who have
visual challenges. Use every possible setting to best support
and facilitate the learning process and customize the content
of the activity.
Keep in mind that Stage Two software may be able to be used
recreationally for a learner who is functioning or developing
skills at a higher Stage. The design of the software and its
content, graphics, and sound would be familiar or easy to
grasp. This comfortable environment could serve as fun and
relaxing play or provide a practice arena.
Individual software titles are recommended not because they
are the most dynamic or up-to-date, but because they are
effective and valuable resources in helping our target learners
accomplish their developmental goals. In fact, even some
programs that have been available for several years and may
appear to be outdated are included. Oftentimes recycled or
older computer equipment is what’s most available for our
target learners. As long as the software offers valuable activities and still may be found in schools or homes as of the
publication date of this document, it remains on the list.
Stages
Stage Two – 45
Exploring Software Settings
Software that is appropriate for Stage Two is available from
many developers. These recommended programs are included
in the feature Comparison Chart that follows. As you look to
identify software that is appropriate for an individual learner,
keep the following in mind.
Input modes
Software appropriate for use at Stage Two expects only a click
or some other selection key, such as a space bar. A menu of
input device options should be available in the software, as
well as a way to indicate which selection key is active. This
way the software knows whether to watch for a click or
selection key, and what type of device is making the selection.
While not all software accommodates this type of fine-tuning,
sometimes the access device itself will have preference settings, which you can adjust to create the same effect for the
learner’s access environment. Work with the assistive technology team or specialist to determine the best way to configure
the environment for success.
Adjusting settings for various types of learners
Explore settings that fit the learner’s preferences and needs,
but don’t feel you need to try every available setting, as the
learner may become confused. At Stage Two, the computer
environment must be consistent or the learner won’t establish
the connection between his behavior and the results that
happen on the screen.
In all software, look to see if there is an option to add your
own images and sounds. At Stage Two, we want images and
sounds that are both familiar and comfortable for the learner.
Since only some software programs permit such customizing,
finding as many other ways to customize the interaction is
important.
46 – Stage Two
Stages
How to Use the Chart
The chart on the following pages compares recommended
software for Stage Two. Each title offers specific features that
may be critical to a learner’s success. Use this chart to help
determine which software might be most beneficial for your
particular learners. The following terms are used in the chart.
Title
The name of the software program.
Publisher
The name of the company that makes or sells the software.
Platform
The types of computers that can run the software.
Mac:
Macintosh® computers
Win:
PC computers running the Windows® operating
system
DOS:
PC computers running the DOS operating
system (older models)
Software is available on CD-ROM, unless otherwise noted.
Mac/Win:
This software is available for both platforms on
the same CD.
Mac, Win:
This software is available for both platforms,
but may be packaged separately.
Access Options
The types of input methods that the program supports.
Keyboard:
You can use a standard or alternative keyboard
such as IntelliKeys® or an accessible onscreen
keyboard.
Mouse:
You can use a standard mouse or mouse emulator, which you can use to point and click.
Touchscreen: You can use a touchscreen, either built into the
computer or attached to a monitor.
IntelliKeys:
This program is set up to use an IntelliKeys®
alternative keyboard from IntelliTools, Inc.
Switch:
You can use a switch with this program.
Other:
Any other methods supported by the software.
Prompt Options
The way in which the learner is encouraged to use the device.
Auditory:
Speech or a sound is used as a prompt.
Visual:
A silent animation or graphic is used as a
prompt.
Multisensory: Sound and animation are used as a prompt.
Stages
Stage Two – 47
Level of Representation
The way in which objects are presented to the learner.
Photo:
Realistic, photographic images are used.
Drawing:
Drawings are used.
Symbol:
Communication symbols are used.
Language Content
The form in which language is presented to the learner.
Single words: Words are presented singly, in isolation.
Word combinations: More than one word or concept is
presented at a time.
Feedback Type
The event that occurs when the learner uses the device.
Auditory:
Sound plays or spoken text occurs.
Visual:
An animation or graphical image is displayed.
Multisensory: Both sound and animation are played.
Voice Options
The way in which speech is presented to the learner and the
available voices.
Digitized:
Recordings of human voices are used.
Synthesized: Computer-generated voices are used.
Graphics
The ages for which the graphics presented are appropriate.
“Generic” indicates that the graphics are appropriate for both
adults and children.
Record Keeping
The data that is collected by the software to keep track of the
learner’s actions while using the program. “Time” refers to the
amount of time spent on the activity.
To change settings:
How to get to the screen where you can change settings.
To exit activity:
How to stop the current activity and/or exit the program.
Other Settings and
Features
Additional capabilities of each program are included here.
Also appropriate at:
Other Stages at which this title may be appropriate are listed.
You may need to change settings within the software to make
it function suitably for learners at these other Stages. Using
software at more than one Stage can help reinforce prior
learning, introduce new concepts in a familiar environment,
and extend the useful life of software in your collection.
The last page of the chart lists titles in other Stages that may
also be appropriate at Stage Two.
48 – Stage Two
Stages
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
Title
A Trip to the Zoo
Best of KidTECH
Cause & Effect Cinema
Circletime Tales® Deluxe
Publisher
Marblesoft
SoftTouch, Inc.
Judy Lynn Software, Inc.
Don Johnston, Inc.
Platform
Mac
Mac or Win diskette
DOS / Win CD or diskette
Mac / Win
√
√
√
√
Access Options
Keyboard
√
Mouse
√
√
Touchscreen
√
√
√
IntelliKeys®
√ (includes overlays)
√
√
Switch
√ (single or multiple)
√
Other
Ke:nxTM On:Board
√ (set to mouse click)
√ with scanning (rate option)
Discover:Switch®, Ke:nx
Prompt Options
Auditory
Visual
√
√
Multisensory
√
√
√
√
Level of Representation
Photo
√
Drawing
√
√
√
√
√
√ nursery rhymes
√
Symbol
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
Feedback Type
Auditory
√ digital sound effects
Visual
√ animation and video
Multisensory
√
√
√
children's voices
male
Generic
Child
Generic; 90 video clips
setup options: onscreen
menu
<ctrl> key
onscreen menu bar
√
Voice Options
Digitized
female child and adult
Synthesized
Graphics
Child
Record Keeping
To change settings
To exit activity:
Other Settings and
Features
Also appropriate at:
click on bus icon
T
(<ctrl> + T) to access options
#3 to quit story
Learner explores 5 areas of a Random scanning selects from
city zoo; This can be self6 activities and then plays a
paced.
song.
Switch: timed and latching modes. 10
categories to choose from. Can choose play
sequence, screen size, and auditory prompt
timing.
Learner can highlight phrases, press to choose
or to turn page only. Software comes with a
binder of learning materials. English/Spanish
settings.
Stage 1
Stage 3, Stage 4
Stage 3, for purposeful
scanning
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 1
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
Title
Concepts On the Move: Advanced
Preacademics
Concepts On the Move:
Preacademics
Basic
Creature Magic
Early Childhood Fun:
Arump
Publisher
SoftTouch, Inc.
SoftTouch, Inc.
Laureate Learning SystemsTM
Creative Communicating
Platform
Mac / Win
Mac / Win
Mac / Win
Mac / Win
Access Options
Keyboard
√
Mouse
√
√
√
√
Touchscreen
√
√
√
√
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
√
√ (includes overlays)
√ 1 or 2, auto or step, turn-taking
√ 1 or 2, auto or step, turn-taking
Auditory
√
√
Visual
√
√
Multisensory
√
√
Photo
√
√
Drawing
√
√
√
√
Illustrates concepts: occupations, functions, goes
with, prepositions, categories
Illustrates concepts: colors, shapes,
big/little, opposites, same as.
√
traditional rhyme
Auditory
√
√
√
Visual
√
√
√
√ animations, music
√ animations, music
√
√
male, female
male, female
male
child
Generic
Generic
Generic
Child
Time on task, access, scan rate, choices,
preferences
Time on task, access, scan rate, choices,
preferences
User Log with time on task, number
of prompts.
<ctrl> key, m-hide/show menus
<ctrl> key, m-hide/show menus
esc to quit
esc to quit
IntelliKeys®
Switch
√
Other
Prompt Options
√
√
Level of Representation
Symbol
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
Feedback Type
Multisensory
Voice Options
Digitized
Synthesized
Graphics
Record Keeping
To change settings
To exit activity:
Other Settings and
Features
Also appropriate at:
choice of cursor, customizable vocabulary, choice of cursor, customizable vocabulary,
press and release/hold, scan rate, one
press and release/hold, scan rate, one
press/multiple press to play, Additional
press/multiple press to play, Additional
overlay CD available, teaching hints, planning
overlay CD available, teaching hints,
sheets. Print, Play & Learn CD available with
planning sheets. Print, Play & Learn CD
off-computer activities
available with off-computer activities
Stage 3 (Choice of concepts presented),
Stage 4 (Prepositions), Stage 6
(Occupations, Functions)
Stage 3 (Choice of concepts presented),
Stage 4 (Shapes, Colors, Big/Little)
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 2
<esc> key
Adjustable sound volume and
response time.
Traditional rhymes. Software
includes frog puppet
template.
Stage 3, Stage 4
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
Early Childhood Fun: Single
Switch Songs
Everybody Has Feet
IntelliPics Studio III: Coloring Ant
Colony
IntelliPics Studio III: Coloring Book
Activity
Publisher
Creative Communicating
Simtech Publications
IntelliTools, Inc.
IntelliTools, Inc.
Platform
Mac / Win
Mac
Win, Mac
Win, Mac
√
√
Title
Access Options
Keyboard
√
Mouse
√
√
√
√
Touchscreen
√
√
√
√
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
√ (overlays available)
√ (overlays available)
√
√ auto or step
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
IntelliKeys®
Switch
Other
scan rate option
Prompt Options
Auditory
Visual
Multisensory
√ (initial only)
√
Level of Representation
Photo
Drawing
√
Symbol
√
√ (optional)
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
8 song starters
√
Feedback Type
Feedback provided by adult
Auditory
√
√
Visual
√
√
Multisensory
√
√
female
child
√
√
Child
Child
child
child
Voice Options
Digitized
Synthesized
Graphics
All records and activities can be saved or All records and activities can be saved or
printed
printed
Record Keeping
To change settings
main menu
To exit activity:
<ctrl> key
Other Settings and
Features
Also appropriate at:
8 song starters. Printable
Boardmaker symbols on songbook
storyboards, to facilitate offcomputer choice making.
Stage 1, Stage 3, Stage 4
<ctrl + M> - menu access, <ctrl + shift + <ctrl + M> - menu access, <ctrl + shift +
O> - user preferences
O> - user preferences
<ctrl> + W
Momentary (Direct) or Timed
Switch modes; progress through IntelliTools Studio Classroom Suite. Uses
story/song sequentially or explore
animation when picture is completed.
its elements; explore word-by-word
Mouse click colors diagram.
or line-by-line
Stage 3
Stage 1, Stage 3
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 3
<ctrl> + W
IntelliTools Studio Classroom Suite.
Stage 3, 4
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
IntelliPics Studio III: Coloring Book
Template
IntelliPics Studio III: Coloring
Diagrams Template
Publisher
IntelliTools, Inc.
Platform
Win, Mac
Keyboard
Title
Introduction to Scanning
Point to Pictures
IntelliTools, Inc.
Judy Lynn Software, Inc.
RJ Cooper & Assoc.
Win, Mac
DOS / Win CD or diskette
Mac, Win
√
√
√ use space bar
√
Mouse
√
√
√
√
Touchscreen
√
√
√
√
√ (overlays available)
√ (overlays available)
√
√ (includes overlays)
√
√
√
√
√
√
Visual
√
√
Multisensory
√
√
Access Options
IntelliKeys®
Switch
Other
Prompt Options
Auditory
Level of Representation
Photo
Drawing
√
√
√
√
Symbol
√
√
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
√
√
Feedback Type
Auditory
√
Visual
√
Multisensory
√
√
√
female
male and custom
child
child
Generic
Generic
Record Keeping
All records and activities can be saved or
printed
All records and activities can be saved or
printed
To change settings
<ctrl + M> - menu access, <ctrl + shift +
O> - user preferences
<ctrl + M> - menu access, <ctrl + shift +
O> - user preferences
main menu
<ctrl>-Q
<ctrl> + W
<ctrl> + W
<esc> key
<ctrl>-Q
IntelliTools Studio Classroom Suite.
IntelliTools Studio Classroom Suite.
Create simple coloring activities that
feature science diagrams. Mouse click
colors diagram.
Stage 3, 4
Stage 1, Stage 3, Stage 4
Voice Options
Digitized
√
Synthesized
√
Graphics
To exit activity:
Other Settings and
Features
Also appropriate at:
Number of turns, % correct
responses.
When learner activates device, Wait option coaches learner when
highlighted object is added to
to click. You can record your own
picture. 15 activities. Can turn
voice, add your own graphics.
auditory scanning (spoken
Prompts in sign language (animated
names) on/off.
character signs prompt).
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 4
Stage 3
Stage 3
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
Puzzle PowerTM, Puzzle Power Zoo &
School Days
Scan It/Switch It
SoftTouch Classics 1: Five
Frogs Plus
SoftTouch Classics 2: Away We
Ride Plus
Publisher
SoftTouch, Inc.
UCLA Intervention Program
SoftTouch, Inc.
SoftTouch, Inc.
Platform
Mac / Win
Mac diskette
Mac / Win
Mac / Win
Title
Access Options
Keyboard
√
Mouse
√
√
√
√
Touchscreen
√
√
√
√
IntelliKeys®
√ (includes overlays)
√
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
Switch
√ auto (rate option)
√
√ 1 or 2, auto or step
√ 1 or 2, auto or step
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
Other
Prompt Options
Visual
Auditory
Visual
√
Multisensory
Level of Representation
Photo
√
Drawing
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
Symbol
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
Feedback Type
Self correcting
Auditory
Visual
Multisensory
√
√
√
√
male
female
male, female
male, female
Generic
Child-oriented
child, teen-oriented
child, teen-oriented
Voice Options
Digitized
Synthesized
Graphics
Number of turns and errors,
name, date, access, switch use, rate, name, date, access, switch use, rate,
average number of errors per
time total number of choices
time total number of choices
turn. .
Record Keeping
To change settings
To exit activity:
Other Settings and
Features
Also appropriate at:
piece placement option menu, access menu
ctrl key
ctrl key
<ctrl> key
<esc> key
esc to quit
esc to quit
Puzzle placement options: Automatic Placement
(for Stage Two); Magnet Mouse, Click and Drag,
and Match Scan (for higher Stages).
Available vertical scan option.
choice of cursor, customizable
vocabulary, press and release/hold,
teaching hints
choice of cursor, customizable
vocabulary, press and release/hold,
teaching hints
Stage 3, Stage 4
Stage 3
Stage 3 (scanning choices) Stage 4
(number concepts)
Stage 3
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 5
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
SoftTouch Favorites
Songs I Sing at Preschool
Switch Basics
Teach Me Functional
Foods
Teach Me to Talk
Publisher
SoftTouch, Inc.
SoftTouch, Inc.
SoftTouch, Inc.
SoftTouch, Inc.
SoftTouch, Inc.
Platform
Mac / Win
Mac / Win
Mac, Win
Mac / Win
Mac / Win
Title
Access Options
Keyboard
√ (1 and 2 keys)
Mouse
√
√
√
√
√
Touchscreen
√
√
√
√
√
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
√ (includes overlays)
√
√ 1 or 2, auto or step, turn-taking
√ 1 or 2, auto or step
√
√
√
IntelliKeys®
Switch
Other
Prompt Options
Auditory
Visual
√
√
√
√
√
Multisensory
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
Level of Representation
Photo
Drawing
√
Symbol
√
√
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
√
√
Popular children's songs.
√
√
Feedback Type
Auditory
√
√ optional music
Visual
√
√
√
√ animations, music
√
male, female
male, female, child
male, female, child
male, female
male, female
Child, Teen
Child
Generic
child, teen-oriented
Generic/morphing (images
morph from photos to
drawings to symbols)
Multisensory
Voice Options
Digitized
Synthesized
Graphics
Record Keeping
To change settings
To exit activity:
Yes
T for scanning preferences
<ctrl> key
Other Settings and
Features
Also appropriate at:
Stage 3
A (<ctrl>+A) for access. <ctrl>+M to
S for scan rate
ctrl key
T for preferences
<ctrl> key esc to quit
<ctrl> key
esc key to quit, "m" to
show menus
<ctrl> key
Choose: 1 target for Stage 2, more targets
for other Stages. Choice of cursor,
customizable vocabulary, press and
release/hold, scan rate, one press/multiple
press to play. Additional overlay CD
available, teaching hints, planning sheets.
Student control option
available. Teacher hints,
choice of music available.
can customize number and
kind of choices presented,
teaching hints, academic
activity grid
Includes teaching hints.
Stage 3 (Choice of concepts presented),
Stage 4
Stage 1: Aquarium, Tiger,
Step Forward, Stage 3:
Beauty Parlor, Barber Shop,
Puzzles
Stage 3 (purposeful
scanning)
Stage 3
hide/show menus
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 6
Stage Two Software Comparison Chart
The Rodeo
Turn-Talking
UKanDu, Switches, Too! Series: Eensy &
Friends, Forgetful & Friends, Humpty
Dumpty & Friends
Publisher
SoftTouch, Inc.
RJ Cooper & Assoc.
Don Johnston, Inc.
Platform
Mac / Win
Mac, Win
Mac / Win
Title
Access Options
Keyboard
Mouse
√
Touchscreen
√
IntelliKeys®
Switch
√ (includes overlays)
√
√
√
√
√
√
Other
Prompt Options
Auditory
√
Visual
√
Multisensory
√
√
√
Level of Representation
Photo
Drawing
√
√
√
√
√
√
√
Symbol
Language Content
Single words
Word Combinations
Feedback Type
Auditory
√
Visual
√
Multisensory
√
Voice Options
Digitized
can record own voice
male, female
Synthesized
Graphics
Teen
Also appropriate at:
child
Generic
Child
Records number of turns,
response time, incorrect switch
use.
To change settings
Other Settings and
Features
male
unspecified gender/age
Record Keeping
To exit activity:
√
<ctrl> key
<ctrl>-Q
T for options
<ctrl>-Q
0 (zero) or M for menu
Teacher can change/add names,
edit content and add photos.
Stage 3, Stage 4
Stage 1, Stage 3, Stage 4
© Copyright 2005 Assistive Technology, Inc.
Stage Two Software Chart, page 7
Additional Titles Appropriate for Stage Two:
Adjectives & Opposites
Cinema II-Life Skills
Concentrate! I, II, III
Dr. Peet's PictureWriter
Early Emerging Rules Series: Negation, Plurals,
Prepositions
Early Songs & Play Collections I and II
Easy Paint (IntelliPics Template)
Easy Paint Underwater (IntelliPics Activity)
Explore (IntelliPics Studio III Template)
Explore Dinosaurs (IntelliPics Studio III Activity)
Exploring First Verbs
Exploring First Words I, II
First Categories
First Verbs
First Words
IntelliMathics III
IntelliPics Studio III
JumpStart Baby
LADL Series (My House, My School, My Town)
Match It
MicroLADS: 1-7
Old MacDonald's Farm Deluxe
On the Farm
Press to Play Series
Scan and Paint
Single Switch Games
Stanley's Sticker Stories
Storytime Songbook I, II
SwitchIt! Farm
SwitchIt! Maker
SwitchIt! People
SwitchIt! Weather
Talking Nouns I, II
Talking Verbs
This Old Man
Touch Balloons
UKanDu Interactive Series: Camp Frog Hollow,
KC & Clyde in Fly Ball
Wheels on the Bus
Words Around Me
50 – Stage Two
Stages
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