TextHelp is one of the biggest commercial providers for text-to-speech and their ReadWriteGold is very fancy.
You know we’re always moaning about white goods? Knowing that washing machines do a gazillion things but we only use the 40 degree mixed wash?
ReadWriteGold is a little like this – yes it reads text to you but my goodness it does so much more.
When I show teachers they often comment that they would like it for teaching – it does do smashing stuff which is why it costs money compared to the (still very good) free MyStudyBar. (Day 4 blog).
It’s worth talking to TextHelp though as there are options – site license etc (I don’t do money so I can’t expand).
What it does:
Reads text and has screen capture to read from the Internet
Predictive text (including prediction from a word bank)
Dictionary – reads definitions
A lovely picture dictionary which can stay at corner of screen – if a student types ‘globe’ a picture of globe comes up
A particular favourite of mine – a tense checker – you can put ‘drive’ in for instance and all options come up with a clock to show past, present etc (dyslexia is a language impairment and tenses can be tricky)
A pdf aloud option
A scanner – scan anything in and it can turn into a word document (even a picture of text from your phone)
Various tint screen, screenmask and ruler options
Translator -French, German, Spanish and Italian
Great highlighting tool – you can highlight sections in 4 different colours then the tool bar will collate then into the separate colours
A fact folder – great for bibliography (includes hyperlinks and pictures)
A key word collector – will pick out words from a document
Speech maker – audio/MP3
I’m sure I’ve forgotten some features but my 28 minutes are up.
If you want to invest in a toolbar – this really is a great one and worth asking for a trial.
Oh, I forgot – there is a teacher setting to switch off the dictionary etc for exams. Don’t forget students can now use a screen reader for the reading section in English paper but NOT a human reader.