ELR Software combines the skills of speech pathologists and software designers to create software for speech, language and literacy intervention. Our programs may be used within therapy, to increase efficiency in service delivery using the Internet and CD based materials, and to improve access to the Internet for people with special needs. We are also available as consultants to clinicians and research projects in the fields of literacy and accessibility issues associated with the Internet.
The aim of this newsletter is to inform you of developments and changes to our major products eLr (Extra Language Resources) and EIA (Enhancing Internet Access). We welcome the opportunity for feedback and questions, and will be pleased to consider including reader contributions and announcements.
This Newsletter (and previous editions) is available online at www.elr.com.au/news and an email version is sent monthly to members of our mailing list (See Subscribing/Unsubscribing).
In this issue -
We at ELR Software have wondered if subscribers of eLr - Extra Language Resources consider that a User Group may be useful. Such a Group could allow a mechanism for users to interact with each other, and share ideas about different ways they have used the software. It would also provide a more organised way to let us (the developers), know about any difficulties or issues that arise, and any ideas you may have for new sections and tasks which you would like to be included in the resource.
We are planning to arrange an initial meeting during the National Conference in Hobart (4-8 May 2003). As this concept is in the very early stages, we are inviting any comments from current subscribers or other interested people. You may have opinions and suggestions about whether it would be useful or not, and/or ideas for how it could be run. So, please feel free to email us with any comments so that we can get some idea of the demand, and help in our plans for an agenda for the May meeting.
New eLr Materials
Changes to eLr Tasks
A total of 144 new tasks have been added to the Phonology - Sound by Sound Section, in the "blends with s", "blends with l" and "blends with r" subsections. Over the last 3 months, we have been adding tasks to Phonology that would be useful for clients who have literacy skills and need more challenging activities.
The "WordSearch" and "SmileyMan" models have proved to be both challenging and fun, and provide ample opportunity for repetition. There is a now a matching version of each of these tasks. So a good combination is to do the "WordSearch" first, and then do "SmileyMan". The "WordSearch" allows the client to become familiar with the target word set, and (if literacy skills support it), they are then somewhat prepared for the word recall/identification needed in "SmileyMan".
Some minor changes have been made to 5 tasks in Phonemic Awareness - Sound Letter Links in Words, and Sounds in Words. The task numbers are 1010-149, 1010-154, 1010-105, 1010-143, 1010-148. There were slight differences in the pictures that were used by PCS and Compic (eg glove/gloves), and this would have caused confusion when sounding out the target word.
There are now at least 3 versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer (MSIE) running on Mac computers which "should" be able to run eLr from the website. The difficulty is that there seems to have been quite a bit of variation in the "compatibility to standards" that Microsoft built into these Browsers, and the different Mac OS's and platforms may also have an impact. Our most recent tests have been centered on an iMac running Mac OS 9.1 with 192 MB memory and MSIE ver5.0 (2022). Apart from some very minor text alignment/placing issues, all eLr tasks and functions performed correctly.
What's more, this system also had Connectix Virtual PC ver3.0 installed which allowed it to run Windows98 (see www.connectix.com). On this machine, eLr-Offline also ran without incident, but a little more slowly than on a corresponding PC machine (although, still as fast or faster than using eLr from the website).
We realise that some users have had difficulties in using eLr with Macs. It will help us to know precisely what Mac systems, memory and MSIE versions you are using if you are having such problems. We're always happy to discuss the options directly with IT staff if your school is a "Mac school".
ELR now has a number of free or evaluation files available for downloading directly from our website. Please see www.elr.com.au/downloads.htm for specific details. For other supporting materials and documents available for free download, please see www.elr.com.au/support.htm.
Presentation to Speech Patholgists working with Adults in the Community (SPAC) about eLr and our related products.
- Speech Pathology Australia National Conference, May 4th - 8th, Hobart. We will have a commercial stand during the conference with eLr, Rude Readers, Word Meanings and EIA on show.
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