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5 Free Back to School Resources for Kids With Disabilities

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While some parents and children are wishing summer break could last longer, other families are looking forward to getting back into a predictable routine once school begins. Despite the potential challenges we may face this coming school year, kids with disabilities are excited to be back into a regular schedule, excited to learn new things, and participate in new activities with their peers.

Some parents may be deciding whether or not to send their kids with disabilities to school, or keep them home because of COVID-19. Either way, there are many free online resources that parents may find useful for their children in preparing them for back-to-school. Here are 5 free back-to-school resources for kids with disabilities:

1. Teacher Vision

Teachers and homeschoolers will find TeacherVision an extensive resource for curriculum strategies and classroom management for students with different learning needs.  The website offers teaching methods and strategies, classroom management, and resources for teaching students with ADHD, autism, and more.

You’ll find numerous links to printables, charts, checklists, guidance for managing behavior, and proactive tips and effective techniques in the classroom.

To learn more, visit Teacher Vision’s website here.

2. Bookshare

Bookshare is an e-book library that makes reading easier for people with reading barriers as they can customize their experience and read in ways that work for them.  Once registered, students with disabilities have access to a huge library.

The library allows students to listen to books, follow along with karaoke-style highlighting, read in braille or large font, and customize e-books in formats. There are over 900,000 titles available and can be read on any device such as a computer, smartphone, table, assistive technology devices, and more. There is no limit to how many books you can read, and it’s free for qualified students.

Learn more at on Bookshare’s website here.

3. ModMath

ModMath is an adaptive program to assist students who struggle with math. The app helps students write mathematical notations to complete their work with the least amount of difficulty.

Available on iTunes, ModMath lets students write and solve math problems with virtual graph paper using the touch screen of an iPad. Using the notation canvas and keypad, students can work without ever picking up a pencil. There are basic math problems to be solved, as well as more complex algebraic equations. Having a virtual math notebook allows students to print, email or save their work, as well as share with their teachers on cloud services like Dropbox.

Check out the ModMath app here.

4. Adapting for Autism

Adapting for Autism was created to provide special educators with functional, appealing and differentiated resources. The author created most of her resources with independent work stations in mind, including visual supports, life skill file folders, adapted books and no prep worksheets.

This library is open to everyone for free; simply register with your name and email and receive a password to access the worksheets, which are also printable. Currently there are 12 free resources available on the website with more being added frequently.

Take a look at Adapting for Autism’s resources here.

5. Natural Reader

Natural Reader is a professional program that converts any written text into spoken words. The natural text-to-speech tool empowers children with difficulties in reading, those with cognitive disabilities, or blind students.

The website allows you to listen to your school notes, office documents, and even printed books from your computer or mobile device. Add the website to Google Chrome so you can easily listen to your emails, news, articles, and Google Docs directly from the webpage. There’s also a dyslexia font specifically designed as a reading aid to help dyslexic readers.

The free version has several great features including unlimited use with Free Voices, Chrome Extension, Pronunciation Editor, and supports PDF, doc files, and more.

Check out Natural Reader’s website here.

These free resources will surely come in handy for parents and children alike leading up to the beginning of the new school year. Happy learning, and let us know if you’ve found other helpful resources in the comments!

Header image via Viktoriia Oleinichenko/Getty Images

Originally published: August 5, 2020
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