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Monarch Opens Grants To Help Autistic Children

Monarch Teaching Technologies will accept applications for its Second Annual Visual Learning 2011 TechGrant program until Oct. 5. Total value of the awards is more than $160,000.

The Shaker Heights, OH-based company, which develops technology for children with special learning needs, will select eight school districts to receive the grant. They will be granted one-year access for 25 teachers to VizZle, a Web-based authoring tool that provides interactive, visual curriculum for children with autism, pervasive development disorder (PDD), Asperger's syndrome, and other learning challenges.

Each TechGrant includes accounts for up to 25 users, professional development resources, and ongoing technical support.

Features of VizZle include:

  • A personal storage and lesson-launching area for teachers, which allows for tracking data by IEP goals and objectives;
  • Folders designated for each student, which can travel with them from team to team;
  • Previews of tens of thousands of VizZle images (photos, line drawings, and black-and-white images), audio bites and video clips;
  • Templates for interactive storybooks, books, games, matching boards, token boards, timers, first-then boards, and "Expression Builders." The teacher can also customize the library with his/her own content;
  • A shared searchable user library that includes peer-reviewed, pre-made lessons by subject, lesson type, grade level, and creator e-mail address; and
  • VizZle lessons can be displayed on computers, touch screens, and whiteboards.

Applications should be e-mailed to [email protected] by Oct. 5, and winners will be announced at the Closing the Gap conference Oct. 14 in Minneapolis, MN.

For copies of the grant application and more information, visit the Monarch Technologies Web site.

About the Author

Tim Sohn is a 10-year veteran of the news business, having served in capacities from reporter to editor-in-chief of a variety of publications including Web sites, daily and weekly newspapers, consumer and trade magazines, and wire services. He can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @editortim.