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There are several reasons why the ProxTalker works for us in NYC. The no need to program idea is perfect for being able to communicate on the fly and respond to the situation as it occurs. Communicating and responding in real time is much more effective than trying to teach a skill and work to apply it.
In addition we work on the foundation of using Core Language to start and ProxTalker created our Core language tags for us so our students can engage quickly and efficiently using Core words regardless of the content. This significantly increases the number of times students get to communicate with other which is paramount to becoming an active communicator and not someone that just identifies vocabulary words.
Additionally since the device can be used for some instructional tasks such as math and spelling and sentence generation, pre literacy skills for left to right orientation etc., it is very handy for reinforcement and teaching skills within the instructional setting. The ProxTalker does this in a very UDL (Universal Design for Learning) way: the tactile component of using the tags with the voice output for the auditory feedback and the picture symbol for the visual the information and content is accessible to all learning styles.
From: New York, USA
(Assistive Technology/UDL Coordinator, NYC DOE-District 75-Technology Solutions)
Today I dropped off the device to be used in the public school and show the staff how to use it. The student has been stagnant with communication for years and had a previous history with PECS but did not take to it. I sat down with him and his teacher and within 3 trials of using the systematic teaching protocol he was smiling and on the 6th trial he was attempting to use the device with independence!
The Logan ProxTalker is a unique augmentative communication device that allows the user to have the experience of both picture communication and tablet devices. With ProxTalker, the user is able to experience the tactile component of selecting and moving RFID chipped tags on to location buttons similar to moving picture/photo cards with exchange systems.
The user is also able to utilize motor planning and see the visual structural component of language as well. Once the tags are pressed on the location buttons, the user is able to access the auditory feedback of each of the individualized tags similar to tablet devices.
For our students, we found this combination of tangible, motor planning, visual language structure and auditory feedback enabled students to make more advances in their communication with others when they had previously been stagnant with exchange systems or unable to utilize tablets.
From: Cleveland Ohio, US
I am currently trialing a ProxPAD ChoiceMaker for a student with a visual impairment who is, also, nonverbal. He has been extremely successful in picking up the concept of the device thus far….
This student has been so amazing to watch with this device, it's really assisting with his speech production. I met one of your representatives at ISHA, and absolutely love this device!
From: Yorkville, IL
After my trach surgery, I was lying in my hospital bed, unable to speak. When I needed to go to the bathroom, I'd ring for a nurse...but I couldn't tell her why I rang for her...and she couldn't always guess...I was so frustrated. Sometimes, I'd ring for help, and the staff wouldn't even come in the room...they'd respond over the intercom, asking me what I needed. I couldn't answer them. It was hopeless.
But once I got the ProxTalker, I could easily communicate again! I'd hit the pre-recorded message..."I have to go to the bathroom"...When I got thirsty, or when I needed to be suctioned, or my stomach hurt, I'd simply hit the appropriate key, and they'd hear me - loud and clear!
Even though I was recovering from surgery and was heavily medicated, the ProxTalker was easy for me to use. Whenever I just wanted a book, or when I got cold, I could let them know...!
The staff didn't have to try to guess anymore, and this ProxTalker made all the difference in the world - when I needed it most!
Thank you, ProxTalker.
From: Wethersfield, Ct.
My son Seth, 21, has autism, is bi-laterally deaf and has a genetic condition that makes every movement a struggle. He tries to speak, he wants to communicate but others do not understand. His iPad will now speak for him and give him and independence otherwise denied
John, who has cerebral palsy uses his ProxTalker every day and it has helped him to be able to express himself and now he has gained much more independence. He is a resident in a care home and as part of the fire rules he needs to tell staff when he leaves the building, now he can do this with the press of a button. Staff have put on the machine sentences that John uses every day and so he is able to state what he wants and not what others think he wants. He uses the machine when he goes out to a Day centre and is now able to communicate with staff and he has much more fun as he enjoys joining in with the banter and they also can help him to achieve his desires. He recommends the ProxTalker as having given more independence and helped him to make new friends in the community. The machine is simple to use and also ideal for those who have limited movement as it can be placed on the lap whilst in a wheelchair so making it able to go where ever he goes. A wonderful, simple effective aid to communication. The activities coordinator at the home says he has seen a great change in John’s independence and enjoyment of life and sees it having many uses with all Adults who have speech and communication problems.
From: Isle of Wight
‘We tried the MegaBee with an 11 year old boy who has a mixed tone CP with athetosis and has considerable movement and access issues, which makes even the use of eye-gaze technologies difficult for him. We have never managed to achieve effective and independent switch control. I trialled the MegaBee with him due to this, combined with his excellent eye- pointing and he really liked it and was very quick to learn to use it, really just able to use the device after watching myself and his TA modelling it. The first word he spelled was my name which I found very touching – he beamed a smile as he was so proud that he could say my name….
He is very clear to say that he would like a MegaBee – I think he likes the fact that he can control it without it always speaking aloud – something which he finds a problem in the classroom. It will be used in the classroom setting for quick communication, answers to questions etc and when he cannot access his eyemax (which is currently quite a bit of the time due to positioning issues with the device).’
As far as our little guy goes, he’s extremely prompt dependent using his PECS binder; however (according to his classroom teacher) his level of independence has significantly increased using the ProxTalker. When we (AT and SLP) introduced the PT to the student, he quickly learned to request with minimal prompting. We’re very excited about his progress in such a short amount of time and are so thankful that you provided us with the loaner. Additionally, his behaviors (screaming/crying) have also decreased.
It’s very fulfilling to see our kiddos progress and again, thank you for the loaner.
From: Elk Grove, CA
I am really thrilled with the progress I see from my student with this system. He's building 5 word sentences, looking through his whole book and really exploring language with this vs. the PECS pics we were using. It is also SO user friendly and the parent training was smooth and unintimidating for his mother.
I haven't been this excited about an AAC device, well, ever!
From: Louisville, KY
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