Introducing Students to VoiceOver for iOS
The PRCVI outreach team has had quite a few requests this school year for assistance with students who are just getting started with VoiceOver on iOS devices. Here, we've compiled some apps that will help students learn and practice VoiceOver gestures and some accessible and educational games to practice their new skills!
For students who may not be familiar with terms such as "flick," "drag," and "tap" (all of which are important when using VoiceOver), it can be helpful to introduce them to these gestures using physical objects before introducing them to the iOS device. For example, students can practice flicking versus dragging a small object (such as an index card) across a table, and can practice tapping and double-tapping on the same spot (such as a tactile dot). Once the basic differences between these gestures are understood, they can apply them while exploring the Home screen or while using a basic app.
There are several apps designed specifically to introduce iOS gestures to students with visual impairments. These apps include:
In addition to the apps listed above, VoiceOver's help mode allows students to perform gestures and get feedback (such as, "One finger double-tap, activate." Some students prefer using this mode to practice gestures, since they get immediate feedback about the gesture performed. VoiceOver's help mode can be toggled on with a four-finger double-tap and toggled off with the same gesture.
Once students have the basics of swiping, dragging, and tapping, they can practice their skills using accessible games. Some examples of accessible games for students include:
We hope you find this information helpful in introducing your students to VoiceOver on iOS devices. If you are a TSVI in British Columbia and would like outreach support in this area, our outreach team is always happy to help!