Wednesday, August 28, 2013

#UDL reading and writing supports for the Chromebook and Chrome Browser

I've been asked to develop a list of Chrome Apps and Extensions that enable reading and writing supports such as text-to-speech, speech-to text, and dictionary tools for students in my district. Here's my first round picks that I feel address some of these needs. Do you have a Chrome App or Extension that you would recommend? Please feel free to add your suggestions or ideas in the comments section.

  1. For text-to-speech I recommend the Chrome extension - Chrome Speak  or Select and Speak. The student highlights the text, right clicks and selects speak.
  2. The Google Dictionary extension will open a definition and audio for any word on any web page by double clicking the word.
  3. The Read & Write extension for Google Drive puts a toolbar on the top of the Google Docs editor that adds text-to-speech, a dictionary tool, visual dictionary tool, and special highlighting tools with extraction features.
  4. The Announcify extension takes online articles on sites like CNN or NYT and strips out all adds and distracting visuals, so that only text is visible, enables text-to-speech, and has easy option for enlarging text.
  5. Voice Recognition is a Chrome app that is equivalent to Dragon Dictation for doing voice-to-text.
Update: Thanks to Mike Marotta via Twitter who suggested Spell and Grammar Checker by Ginger

Great post. One other key support in Chrome for struggling writers is the Ginger Spell and grammar extension.