Supports for Educators

COVID19TeacherpicSmall.jpg Supports for Educators

Office Hours:

Please note office hours are intended to provide real-time technical assistance to educators, caregivers, parents, and students. Technical assistance is not legal advice. Specific questions concerning a student’s special education program or the laws relating to the provision of services in a child’s IEP (Individualized Educational Program) should be directed to ConsultLine at 800-879-2301.

Testing your system:

Participants are encouraged to test your computers/devices prior to the date of the web conference using, and to seek local assistance if you encounter difficulty.

Date/Time: Tue 1-3 PM & Wed 9-11
Go to to schedule an appointment or for an alternate time email Join Zoom meeting from your computer or join by phone (646) 876-9923 and type in meeting ID 343 939 562

Possible Topics:  AT/AAC general Q&A

Email for Questions:

Pre-Recorded Trainings:

  • Communication All Day Long: AAC in Classroom with Caroline Musslewhite For those of us in classrooms, we may find struggles with ensuring assistive technology is being used effectively to access the learning. PaTTAN YouTube Channel  Podcast Platform Length: 18:32
  • Communication Matrix with Kelly Fonner Kelly Fonner, a consultant and trainer in assistive technology joins PaTTANpod to unpack a particularly useful AT tool available. PaTTAN Channel: Podcast Platform: Length: 12:18
  • Microsoft Accessibility with Lindsey Troyanoski Guest, Lindsey Troyanoski a Microsoft Learning Consultant, shares the features available through common Microsoft platforms to assist in the design and delivery of instruction for all students. Length: 15:44
  • Tools for Access: Authoring Accessible Content Length: 17:49
  • Tools for Access: Using and Teaching with Accessibility Tools Length: 34:40
  • Tools for Access: Microsoft Translator Length: 13:27
  • POWER:AAC training series developed by PaTTAN with Gail Van Tatenhove, PA, MS, CCC-SLP POWER:AAC is a training series developed by PaTTAN with Gail Van Tatenhove, CCC-SLP. Gail, a speech/language pathologist with over thirty years of experience in the field of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC), has collaborated with AAC practitioners in Pennsylvania intermediate units over the course of several years on this project. The result is this series of brief modules, which can be used for professional development by individuals or groups who are supporting students with complex communication needs and who need or use AAC.
  • Module 1: Welcome to POWER:AAC​ Module 1 provides an overview of the series and materials. POWER:AAC is designed to build the capacity of those who serve students with complex communication needs who require the use of of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems. The materials are appropriate for self-directed or professional learning community use. Length: 14:3
  • Module 2: Assess Classroom Practices Module 2 of the POWER:AAC series addresses common classroom practices with students who may have very low or no speech, who may need or already use AAC systems. A variety of effective classroom practices are introduced, including the use of flexible, generative, potentially powerful words known which are referred to as "core" vocabulary or "core words". As a means of identifying your current educational practices and adopting POWER:AAC classroom practices, you will be asked to complete a self-assessment profile. Length: 21:04
  • Module 3: Develop Personal AAC Systems Module 3 of the POWER:AAC series reviews the various multi-modal AAC options to consider for students who need/use AAC, from no-tech, through low-tech, to high tech. A guide for making one such option- a simple manual communication board – is introduced. Length: 23:06
  • Module 4: Select Core Vocabulary Words Module 4 of the POWER:AAC series covers the important topic of selecting words for a student’s AAC system. It focuses on the importance of core vocabulary words and planning for providing sufficient vocabulary in student AAC systems. Length: 21:57
  • Module 5: Represent Vocabulary Words Module 5 addresses issues regarding the representation of vocabulary words with pictures. It provides simple strategies for teaching pictures for core vocabulary words and managing pictures on other visual support materials in classrooms. Length: 32:17
  • Module 6: Provide Support and Scaffolds Module 6 covers the visual supports and educational scaffolds that are essential in a POWERAAC classroom environment, including tools to help students communicate with their AAC systems. Length: 1:02:32
  • Module 7: Practice Partner Skills Module 7 covers the important topic of communication partner skills. AAC literature reports that adult communication partners facilitate communication growth for their students when they learn how to model language using the form of AAC the student is learning to use, create communication opportunities, and respond to students’ use of their systems with descriptive feedback. Length: 1:03:24
  • Module 8: Teach Vocabulary Module 8 presents a variety of strategies for teaching core and extended vocabulary using their AAC system. These strategies provide starting points for guiding POWER:AAC classroom teams in developing their own systematic approach to teaching vocabulary use with their students. Length: 1:21:11
  • Module 9: Use AAC in Class Module 9 addresses the four purposes of communication as defined by Janice Light in her work on Communicative Competence – wants and needs, information transfer, social closeness, and social etiquette. For students who use AAC, learning to communicate for these purposes puts them on a path towards increasing communication competence. IEP goals are also discussed in this module. Length: 1:12:19
  • Module 10: Use AAC at Home Module 10 focuses on the role of parents and the family in their child’s AAC communication success. This module is designed to help school staff support parents and families as they use their child’s AAC system and core vocabulary at home. Length: 40:51
  • Module 11: Collect Evidence Module 11 provides guidelines, resources, and some starting points for collecting data on students’ progress in their use of their personal AAC systems. Length: 38:35
  • Module 12: Share Resources Module 12, the final module in this POWER:AAC Series, provides resources to help you connect with a community of others who share a commitment to the principles of a POWER:AAC classroom, as well as experiences and idea about its implementation. Length: 21:19
Live Trainings
 Insurance Funding for Speech-Generating Devices by Pat Mervine
Date/Time: March 24 (3-4 PM)
Description: Obtaining insurance funding for tablet-based speech-generating devices (SGD) can be daunting. This webinar will guide attendees through the forms, reports, and procedures that must be followed for initial application and appeals. Emphasis will be on the keywords, phrases, and elements in AAC reports that lead to a successful outcome.
Link to Join webinar:

Save the date for this year’s AAC Talks 2020 on May 8!
Date/Time: May 15 (8:45 AM-3:45 PM)
Description: This unique AAC conference is designed to provide participants with strategies, resources, and ideas to support students with complex communication needs in classrooms and other environments. National and local presenters will address a variety of topics including classroom implementation strategies, core vocabulary, access and positioning for AAC, parent engagement, and features of AAC devices and apps.
All sessions are available right from your desktop or mobile device!