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Read the Words

ReadTheWords.com is a free, web based service that assists people with written material using text-to-speech. Users can generate an audio file from almost any written material. Users have the option of writing a text, copying text from another file, uploading a file (MS Office, PDF, txt, and HTML documents), or indicating a website address or RSS feed URL.

Content Area: reading
Grade Level: intermediate elementary, middle school, secondary, transition
IDEA Disability Category: autism, emotional disturbance, major-other health impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, visual impairment
Operating Systems: Web-based
English Language Arts: Reading: Foundational Skills
Math
WordTalk

WordTalk is a free plug-in developed for use with all versions of Microsoft Word (from Word 97 upwards), which may help people with reading and writing difficulties use Microsoft Word more effectively. It will speak the text of the document and will highlight it as it goes. It contains a talking dictionary to help decide which word spelling is most appropriate. It sits in a user's toolbar and is configurable, allowing users to adjust the highlight colors, the voice and the rate of speed of the speech.

Content Area: reading, writing
Grade Level: early elementary, intermediate elementary, middle school, secondary, transition
IDEA Disability Category: autism, emotional disturbance, major-other health impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, visual impairment
Operating Systems: Windows (MS 98 and newer)
English Language Arts: Writing
Math

VocabGrabber analyzes any text you're interested in, generating lists of the most useful vocabulary words and showing you how those words are used in context. Just copy text from a document and paste it into the box, and then click on the "Grab Vocabulary!" button. VocabGrabber will automatically create a list of vocabulary from your text, which you can then sort, filter, and save. Select any word on the list and you'll see a snapshot of the Visual Thesaurus map and definitions for that word, along with examples of the word in your text. 

Content Area: reading, writing
Grade Level: middle school, secondary
IDEA Disability Category: autism, emotional disturbance, major-other health impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment
Operating Systems: Windows (MS 98 and newer)
English Language Arts: Language, Reading: Informational Text, Reading: Literature
Math
Microsoft Reader

Use this free reader to create a library of e-books to provide reading supports through spoken text as well as a variety of other study features (annotations, highlighting, dictionary, bookmarks). Can convert any digital text or students' Word documents into an e-book. Cover images can also be added.

Content Area: reading
Grade Level: early elementary, intermediate elementary, middle school, secondary, transition
IDEA Disability Category: autism, emotional disturbance, major-other health impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, visual impairment
Operating Systems: Web-based, Windows (MS 98 and newer)
English Language Arts: Reading: Foundational Skills
Math
Bookshare

World's largest online accessible library of copyrighted content for people with print disabilities. Collection has over 90,000 digital books including textbooks, children's books, literature, popular books, special collections, newspapers and magazines that can be easily downloaded in DAISY or BRF formats. Membership is free for U.S. students with qualified print disabilities, and members get free reading software for PC and Mac.

Content Area: reading
Grade Level: early elementary, intermediate elementary, middle school, secondary, transition
IDEA Disability Category: multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, traumatic brain injury, visual impairment
Operating Systems: Macintosh, Windows (MS 98 and newer)
English Language Arts: Language, Reading: Foundational Skills, Reading: Informational Text, Reading: Literature
Math
Audible

Use Audible to find and download spoken audio books, information, educational programming, and other spoken media (radio, TV programs, magazines and newspapers). Audible audio files are compatible with many audio players, mobile phones and streaming media devices, files can also be downloaded using Windows PC or Macintosh computers, and burned to a CD. Using the Audible App allows the user to download, play and store multiple titles on their mobile device. Various subscription levels and pricing are available. 

Content Area: reading
Grade Level: early elementary, intermediate elementary, middle school, secondary, transition
IDEA Disability Category: specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, visual impairment
Operating Systems: Android, iPad, iPhone, Macintosh, Web-based, Windows (MS 98 and newer)
English Language Arts: Language, Reading: Foundational Skills, Reading: Informational Text, Reading: Literature, Speaking & Listening
Math