Physical Access Tools and Strategies (Tier 1)

The following lists of physical access tools and strategies are important initial steps to consider when determining what types of assistive technology have been or need to be trialed or implemented to support your struggling student. These may be readily available in the classroom.

 Tools
  • Clipboard
  • Slanted surface (e.g., binder turned 90 degrees, slant board)
  • Book stand
  • Page-up
  • Book clips
  • Dycem (non-slip, "sticky" material)
  • Page "fluffers"
  • Keyboard stickers
  • NCR paper ("carbonless" or "no carbon required" paper e.g., for note-taking)
  • Graph paper for math and writing to align numbers and letters


 Strategies
  • Change font size/color/style/highlight
  • Change background color/contrast
  • Student uses NCR paper for peer/shared note-taking.
  • Utilize teacher/staff to scribe
  • Provide copy of notes (e.g., hard copy, online access)
  • Modify assignment length
  • Provide additional time to complete assignments
  • Provide frequent breaks
  • Highlight or outline the answer space to help the student see the boundaries.

  • Provide a word bank and number the words. The student writes or stamps the number of the word in the answer space, instead of writing it.
  • Provide writing and note-taking templates to increase focus on the most important ideas.  This will also help reduce fatigue caused by writing more than necessary.
  • Student highlights important facts/ideas when given a hard copy of the notes.
  • Trial different sizes and types of pencils, pens, and pencil grips