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Writing Adventure Time! for iOS

By Cheryl Hannan Free

Developer's Description

The Writing Adventure Time App is a powerful literacy assessment and instructional tool that supports braille writing skills of students who are visually impaired. It is a collaborative project between California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA) and Braille Institute of America (BIA).

The main goal of Writing Adventure Time is to create and disseminate a mobile app that incorporates evidence-based instructional strategies to support the development of literacy skills of students who read braille. A secondary goal is to increase the technology skills of students and teachers who use the app. Specifically, to access the app, teachers and students must learn to use iPads with Voice Over (VO a screen reading accessibility option built into the operating system for individuals with visual impairments) and refreshable braille displays (a portable peripheral device that pairs with the iPad and provides a braille output of the screen).

The Writing Adventure Time app is designed to support braille literacy development in the area of Writing for all grade levels 1st-12th grades. The app supports Unified English Braille (UEB). The assessment portion of the app has a placement test (designed to identify the students performance level) and progress monitoring (designed to provide ongoing student performance data and includes 8 sets of content). The assessment contains a dictation component, which requires that the student listens to words, phrases and sentences and accurately braille what they hear. When the student begins each test or activity, a timer starts and records how long it takes the student to complete each. Progress monitoring assessments also have measures for three of the Language standards of the CCSS. After the dictation questions are answered, the teacher is given the iPad and allowed to score the passage by marking the words, phrases or sentences that the student typed incorrectly, and log the specific types of errors made in each case (e.g. substitution of a word, omission of a word, change in the meaning of the sentence, or braille error). Once the passage is scored by the teacher, an overall score report is generated that indicates the students speed and accuracy scores with a detailed list of the CCSS met, and a list of specific error types.

The activities section has activities that are designed to focus on braille writing subskills.

To accommodate for differences within grade levels, the app is structured to include five age groupings and several levels as follows.

(list of reading ages / levels)

Apprentice Grades 1 & 2*

Level 1 early 1st grade

Level 2 late 1st grade

Level 3 early 2nd grade

Level 4 late 2nd grade

Freshman Grades 3 & 4*

Level 1 early 3rd grade

Level 2 late 3rd grade

Level 3 early 4th grade

Level 4 late 4th grade

Sophomore Grades 5 & 6*

Level 1 early 5th grade

Level 2 late 5th grade

Level 3 early 6th grade

Level 4 late 6th grade

Junior Varsity Grades 7, 8, & 9*

Level 1 7th grade

Level 2 8th grade

Level 3 9th grade

Varsity Grades 10, 11 & 12*

Level 1 10th grade

Level 2 11th grade

Level 3 12th grade

* Note: Levels are approximate.

Full Specifications

What's new in version


Release September 1, 2019
Date Added September 1, 2019

Operating Systems

Operating Systems iOS
Additional Requirements Requires iOS 9.0 or later. Compatible with iPad.


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