March 2011

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), Build-a-Sentence, Word Meanings, Rude Readers 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) as well as a "print-ready" PDF version of the current edition is available online at www.elr.com.au/news. An email version is also sent monthly to members of our mailing list (See Subscribing/Unsubscribing).

In this issue -

  1. Now Over 11,000 Tasks in eLr
  2. New eLr Materials this Month
  3. "Where is?" - a New eLr Directory Section
  4. Win an Apple iPad!
  5. Other Independent Developers
  6. Free Downloads
  7. ELR 2011 Calendar

  1. Now Over 11,000 Tasks in eLr

    This month's additional tasks brings another landmark with the total number of tasks in eLr now over 11,000 (in more than 900 categories). To put that into a certain perspective, this would be a pile of printed or photocopied activity sheets over 1.2m high; and you can have all that at your fingertips on a laptop or from our wesite! Help us celebrate with an entry in our iPad draw - see below.

  2. New eLr Materials this Month

    There are 58 new tasks in "Phonology - Later Sounds". Most of the tasks use the new model called LadderPics, a game based on Snakes and Ladders. This model provides a fun way to practice articulation skills. Last month we reviewed the Phonology sections targeting /k, g, f, v, s, z/, and this month we have reviewed /sh, zh, ch, dge, y, l/. The aim of the review was to ensure that each section has a full range of games to encourage consolidation and generalisation of target sounds in words, sentences, and in conversational speech. Each of the reviewed sections now have picture based games, including SpinPics, TicTacPics, MemoryPics, and LadderPics, and for older clients there are word based games such as WordSearch, SmileyMan, ConnectWords, and MemoryWords.

  3. "Where is?" - a New eLr Directory Section

    With the large number of tasks now in eLr comes the increasing need for familiarity with our classification mechanism to find just what you're looking for. This mechanism is the section we call the "Directory" which is available on the page Registered Users see when they log on. It resembles a traditional filing cabinet with sections labelled "Phonology - Skills & Early Sounds", "Phonology - Later Sounds", "Phonological Awareness", "Reading & Spelling", "Semantics", "Sentence Processing" and "Using Language". Within each of these main sections, further sub-sections can be progressively opened until you arrive at a list of tasks appropriate to a particular target, for example "Phonology - Later Sounds -> s sound -> Initial position -> Consonant-Vowel-Consonant words".

    But, if you are looking for particular activities, and don't know exactly how we may have classified them, the size of the "Directory" can be a little daunting. We've now begun a new sub-section in "User Guides" (also on the Registered Users page) called "Where is? - locating common target areas". These guides will tell you where to find appropriate sub-sections in the "Directory", and show examples of available tasks. The first 3 new guides cover the target areas "Blending and segmenting activities", "Basic concept words" and "Similarities and differences". We look forward to feedback about this new section, and suggestions and requests to cover additional areas.

  4. Win an Apple iPad!

    If you've missed previous announcements, we are running a draw for an Apple iPad! The purpose in part is to help us celebrate "11,000 task" landmark for eLr, and to thank the many people who've supported us over the years. Results will be drawn and announced at the Speech Pathology Australia 2011 National Conference in Darwin, June 26th-29th 2011.

    We've already had a good number of entries, and some very valuable comments. The entry form (see below) asks that you leave us comments about "What do you like", "What would you like to see changed" and "What would you like to see added" to eLr.

    To be eligible for the draw, you must have a current eLr subscription on 1st of July 2011. So any new subscribers in 2011 will be automatically eligible, as will current subscribers with an expiry date of July 2011 or later. Current subscribers whose subscriptions expire before June 2011 will also be eligible if they renew at any time before the draw. If you have a multiuser subscription, all those covered by the subscription may individually enter.

    Entries are open until June 28th 2011. To enter the draw, you must fill out and submit the electronic form at www.elr.com.au/ipad.htm. Or you can phone us on (03) 5156 8309 to give us your details. Several entrants so far have asked for materials which we've covered in the new "Where is?" section (see above), highlighting the need for us to improve ways of finding existing eLr materials! There've also been some great positive comments, such as:

    The simple fact that it engages students who have been turned off by pen and paper literacy tasks.

    The variety of activities that are on offer.

    Flexibility. Tasks of varying levels of difficulty. Available offline, especially useful when visiting schools. Children like using computers.

    Material is great for home practice particularly for rural children and those on a break from 1:1 therapy to reinforce and have many trials of a task. Also great as a break from paper tasks. When in a hurry it si wonderful knowing that I can rely on eLr to plan my sessions.

    More next month.

  5. Other Independent Developers

    As an occasional feature of this Newsletter, we include simple, unpaid announcements of products developed by other small, independent developers, who, like ourselves, are practising clinicians who have put their ideas and experience into resource materials for general distribution. Links and brief information about these sites may be found at www.elr.com.au/links/developers.htm. To date we have listed -

    If you would like your materials listed on this page (at no charge), please contact us.

  6. 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.

  7. ELR 2011 Calendar

    ELR Software is now able to offer eLr support and short tutorials over the web. We can provide this sort of support to individuals, or to groups who would like to have an overview of eLr. Please contact us for details.

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, Build-s-Sentence or EIA. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send an e-mail with details to news@elr.com.au

Copyright ©2011 ELR Software Pty Ltd

Postal ELR Software Pty Ltd
PO Box 1456
VIC 3875, Australia
(03) 5156 8309
1800 018 309
+61 3 5156 8309
(03) 5156 8609
+61 3 5156 8609