November 2003

Newsletter of ELR Software Pty Ltd

ABN 67 090 738 702

ELR Software produces a range of computer programs designed by speech pathologists for speech, language & literacy intervention. Our programs may be used interactively within therapy sessions, to increase efficiency in service delivery, 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), Rude Readers, Word Meanings 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 -

  1. Prize winner - Win a Rude Reader
  2. A Boy has a Penis - Featured Rude Reader
  3. New and changed eLr Materials
  4. "What's New" - a new feature in eLr
  5. Free Downloads
  6. ELR 2003/2004 Calendar

  1. Prize winner - Win a Rude Reader

    Congratulations to Nancy Mills, in North Queensland. Nancy is the winner of our inaugural "Win a Rude Reader" prize.

    A couple of months ago we announced the "Win a Rude Reader" competition. Subscribers and users of eLr who sent feedback about eLr (Extra Language Resources) would be included in a draw to win a prize (a Rude Reader Volume). The feedback could include any comments you might have about areas that are useful (or not useful), suggestions for more activities or improvements, and comments about how you use eLr in your practice (or with your family).

    Thank you very much for all those who have responded. We received lots of feedback, plus enough suggestions to keep us busy for some time! Several people probably deserved a prize, but we have decided instead to offer a prize every three months. All the unsuccessful entries will be placed back in the "draw bin" for the next prize. So those of you who sent us feedback this time, still have a chance to win in the next draw - along with new entrants. But, if you are the winner, you will need to send more feedback to re-enter!

    Next draw - Dec 31 2003. In the meantime, in the next Newsletter we'll publish a summary of suggestions we received.

  2. A Boy has a Penis - Featured Rude Reader

    The title is rude enough to set off the web-censors - but please be assured, that's as "rude" as it gets. This story came from the inappropriate questions a 12 year old autistic boy child was asking - Does Dad / Aunty Karen have a penis? - an information-seeking question about gender. It highlights what is and isn't socially acceptable.

    This Reader, the third from Volume 1, shows who you can ask and who you shouldn't ask. The child asks the same question of different people - family, teachers, friends, school children - to represent circles of safety. Then comes their response "Yes I do." / "No I don't." using the syntax of replying to a "Do" question. Then comes the reason - "I'm a man." / "I'm a woman." Finally there's the social message about pragmatics. "You can ask me that." / "You are a cheeky boy. Don't ask that. It's private". The pages alternate male and female answers. The females are less accepting than males to discourage the child from asking females. This Rude Reader was so enjoyable - the boy loved it - that we then wrote another social rules story for him - "Don't Hit Dad" - coming up in a future Volume. He particularly liked how the words stayed the same regardless of who was reading to him.

  3. New and changed eLr Materials

    We've been reviewing Phonology - Later Sounds to ensure that there is a consistent range of tasks for all sound targets. This month, 88 new tasks (25 PicCards, 26 Slide show and 37 TicTacPics) have been added to sounds that had not included these models.

    There have also been 8 new tasks added to Phonemic Awareness (Sound Letter Links, and Sounds in Words Sections). Previously, there were only 2 tasks containing words with 3 sounds (one task had /at/ words, and the other had /un/ words). Now, there are 6 tasks in each section containing words with 3 sounds, and 4 of these have assorted vowels. This will enable you to provide a greater range of practice for children at the early stages of developing segmenting skills.

    Thanks to those people who have emailed with suggestions for changes like these. We also had a few errors in some of the vocabulary in sections like /th/, and /ch/. It's amazing how these errors creep in. For example, it was pointed out the the word "picture" is actually a medial /ch/ blend, and not a /ch/ medial word. We are grateful for the feedback, so if you come across words that you feel don't belong in certain areas, feel free to email us.

  4. "What's New" - a new feature in eLr

    "What's New" is a log of additions and major changes as they occur in eLr. This feature will be useful especially for those subscribers who primarily use eLr-Offline. When you get your 6 monthly update, you will now be able to quickly see all that has changed in the last 6 months.

    Each month we add new tasks to the eLr Directory, and sometimes there are also new features or changes to existing tasks, or the way parts of the program operate. This newsletter (ELR-News) will continue to highlight this information, while "What's New" provides an easily accessed, complete archive of changes back to when eLr was launched in February 2000. Links to "What's New" are present both on the eLr Home Page, and in the Support section. See www.elr.com.au/support/changes.htm.

  5. Free Downloads

    ELR 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.

  6. ELR 2003/2004 Calendar

Subscribing/Unsubscribing to this Newsletter

You are receiving ELR-News because you are an eLr subscriber, or have expressed an interest in either eLr, Rude Readers, Word Meanings or EIA. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send an e-mail with details to news@elr.com.au

Copyright ©2003 ELR Software Pty Ltd

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PO Box 1456
VIC 3875, Australia
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(03) 5156 8609
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