Technology @ High Point, vol. 16

Tech for teaching and learning in our new space

Fill Your Toolbox!

Well-implemented technology gives classroom staff loads of tools for teaching students with a broad range of learning styles. The time investment in learning new technology will make teaching easier and assist students in advocating for their life-long learning. This newsletter PD is intended to help you learn new technologies at High Point a little bit at a time, slowly filling up your teaching toolbox throughout this chaotic school year.

This Week's Tech Feature:

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High Point classrooms are stocked with many mounts for holding switches and iPads. All of the assistive technology in the classrooms is useless if you have no way to hold it where students can access it.

The Modular Hose Mount has a simple clamp, a long caterpillar arm and a round plate that fits an Orby switch with Velcro. The caterpillar tubing can bend and twist in any direction to get a switch in any position. This mount is really good for students who have uncontrolled body movements that may cause strong movements that could cause injury if they hit a stationary object. The Modular Hose will flex if hit and reduce the chances of injury.

The Friction Knob Universal Switch Mount (USM) is a bit more complicated but it does a good job of holding items in a very rigid position. It has several plates to allow it to hold a variety of different sized items and a cradle to hold an iPad.

Using either of these mounts, you should be able to hold most items in the correct position. For more unique mounting solutions, you can find other mounts in the ATAC Lab.

Who is it for?

Mounts are good for anyone who needs an extra hand to hold something.

  • Students who need a switch held in just the right spot
  • Students who need a switch held just a little further away to encourage an increase in range of motion
  • Students and teachers who need an iPad held where they can reach it and see it

Setup Instructions

Both of these mounts were chosen because they are very simple to setup.

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The Modular Hose mount simply clamps on to a flat surface. It should not be used on round surfaces like wheelchair tubes because it won't hold tightly in place. This mount is meant to hold lightweight items like switches. It will not reliably hold the weight of an iPad. The length of the arm can be lengthened or shortened. In the AT Lab at High Point you will find a clamp tool to assemble the arm and extra lengths of the arm to add. This is the clamp tool:
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The Friction Knob Universal Switch Mount (USM) is a great mount for flat or round surfaces. There is a little triangular piece that makes this possible (shown in the picture below). This piece goes in the mount as shown below for attaching to flat surfaces. For round surfaces, just pop that piece out. It stores by snapping onto the small knob on the back of the clamp.
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The position of this mount can be adjusted with the big knob. When you loosen the knob, all three joints will go loose. Make sure you are holding the end of the arm before you loosen it to avoid injury to a student or damage to a device. There is a slot at both ends of the arm that will allow it to sit at a 90 degree angle. Use this position to hold items in just the right spot.

There are several parts that can be added to the top of the mount to hold all kinds of stuff. The round plate is perfect for attaching a switch with Velcro. The long rectangular plate is useful for holding a small keyboard or a joystick or trackball. The triangular plate is great for holding the standard sized Candy Corn switch which is available for checkout in the ATAC Lab. Some of the High Point mounts have an iPad cradle to hold the standard size iPad. The best way to insert the iPad is by setting one of the narrow ends of the iPad in the cradle and push on the opposite end to extend the cradle until the iPad slips in.

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Both mounts can be cleaned with disinfecting wipes, but avoid the ball joints on the USM mount. If you clean away the grease on the ball joints, they will not move smoothly.

Ideas for Using This Tech in the Classroom