August 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. Winner of our Apple iPad Draw!
  2. New and Changed eLr Materials
  3. Other Independent Developers
  4. Free Downloads
  5. ELR 2011 Calendar

  1. Winner of our Apple iPad Draw

    The lucky winner is Kristy McLean of the DECS Limestone Coast Speech Pathologists in Mt Gambier, South Australia. The draw was held at the Speech Pathology Australia 2011 National Conference in Darwin. We thank all of you who entered, and are particularly grateful for the hundreds of comments and suggestions you've provided. And thanks also to all the familiar and new faces who dropped by our stand at the Darwin conference, and especially to those who bought new subscriptions.

    This draw came about because we decided to celebrate a number of eLr milestones reached in this last year, and to thank the subscribers to eLr for the support you've given over the years. In particular eLr is now 10 years old, and now has more than 11,000 activities in almost 1,000 categories. A recent analysis of the eLr website statistics indicate that both "Guest" and "Registered Users" have each reached more than 1,000,000 tasks used. And usage of eLr-Offline (the CD version which doesn't require internet access) is possibly even higher according to feedback we've had.

    The other reason for celebration is that our updates this year allow eLr to work with a range of browsers, in particular several on the Mac computer and the iPad. And a full iPad "app" is not far off! Our original concept that eLr could be the clinicians "toolbox" wherever she/he may need it, has advanced considerably since March 2000.

    Here are some more of the great positive comments we received:

    "The phrase level materials are great - I use them as "readers". The younger children love them as home work. The parents can use them as auditory input/bombardment to support a school based program."

    "I'm always surprised at how the younger children love "mouth sounds". Many of my clients love basic computer practice as a reward with the drag games. The sequencing stories are great - particularly the boy/girl matching sets for practicing gender pronouns."

    "I use the big/little coloured animals etc to play barrier games on boards I make up to also practice positional terms and colours. These are great for building children up to more difficult barrier games using a Derbyshire perspective. Love the website and use it regularly these are my main items I use but sometimes do other things less frequently."

    More next month.

  2. New and Changed eLr Materials

    For this month's edition we've made a substantial revision to the content of the MouthSounds model which is used in "Phonology - Later Sounds", and "Phonology - Skills and Early Sounds". The activities now contain pictorial depictions of the following consonants: /p, b, t, d, k, g, f, v, s, z, sh, zh, ch, dge, th, l, r, m, n, ng, h, j, w/.

    The MouthSounds model provides material to encourage the client to produce a specific sound in short syllables by blending the "consonant-vowel" and "vowel-consonant" combinations. Previously this model only had pictorial depictions of the vowel sounds (ah, ee, oo), and the target consonant was represented by a letter(s). The revised model now has graphics for all the sounds,so the client has explicit and specific visual prompts to support accurate production of targets.

    The ELR team has been working on these drawings throughout 2011. Some sounds are reasonably easy to depict visually (eg /s, th, m/), but others are quite difficult such as /r, k, g, ng/ etc. In developing these graphics we aimed to emphasise key features of the sound to assist the client in producing that sound. So the pictures, although not perfectly anatomically precise, will hopefully be instructive in demonstrating the main articulatory feature.

    We welcome feedback from you about any aspect of these new graphics as we plan to expand their use in new sections of eLr targeting therapy for dyspraxia and literacy. You may wish to let us know whether the picture is "working", whether it needs adjustment, and also ideas that you may have about other uses for them.

    We've also added a new item to the "Where is? - locating common target areas" section in "User Guides". This section was developed to help users find particular sorts of activities. The first 6 target areas covered were "Blending and segmenting activities", "Basic concept words", "Similarities and differences", "Word finding", "Categorisation", "Verb tense", "Non-words for literacy development" and "Sequencing". This month we've added "Pronouns".

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

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