2004 Conference Proceedings

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SHARING EXPERTISE: PRACTICAL INFORMATION PRODUCTS FOR PREK-12 PRACTITIONERS

Presenters
Elizabeth A. Lahm
Wisconsin Assistive Technology Initiative
Polk Library, 800 Algoma Ave.
Oshkosh, WI 54901
Email: elahm@cesa6.k12.wi.us

Paula Walser
Wisconsin Assistive Technology Initiative
Polk Library, 800 Algoma Ave.
Oshkosh, WI 54901
Email: pwalser@cesa6.k12.wi.us

The Wisconsin Assistive Technology Initiative (WATI) is celebrating its 10th year of service to Wisconsin public schools. It is a recognized leader in the delivery of assistive technology services to practitioners across the state. Through a network of 12 WATI regional consultants, a statewide consultant, and a director, WATI seeks to ensure that every child in Wisconsin who needs assistive technology (AT) will have equal and timely access to an appropriate evaluation and the provision and implementation of any needed AT devices and services. A primary goal is to improve the outcomes and results for children and youth with disabilities through the use of assistive technology to access school programs and curriculum.

The project is designed to increase the capacity of school districts to provide assistive technology services by making training and technical assistance available to teachers, therapists, administrators and parents throughout Wisconsin. A method adopted over the years for extending the value of training and technical assistance is to develop information products that practitioners can continue using after the initial training. After 10 years of service, WATI has over 15 products. These materials include manuals, assessment forms, self assessment tools, children's stories, and examples of many successful applications. Titles include:

Manuals

Assessment Forms

Self Assessment Tools

Children's Stories

Low Tech AT Materials

In addition we have found several low cost AT devices that we find useful and want to pass those on to others.

Several products have been developed in collaboration with the Oregon CATO project. Two of these are produced by CATO but are available through WATI for Wisconsin service providers.

WATI materials have been sold in 47 states and 7 countries. WATI consultants are continually updating them as they use them in their own practice, bringing best practices to the field in a timely manner.

This presentation will showcase the majority of these products. Examples of who has used them and how they have been used will be provided. Stations will be set up in the room to allow the audience to have a closer look at each product and ask specific questions. Some time will be allotted to brainstorming "next products" and sharing non-commercial products audience participants have found especially useful.


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