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Voice amplifiers
Old 07-21-2017, 07:48 PM
 
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Does anyone use a voice amplifier in the classroom? I saw an ad on FB for some kind of ball that is designed to be tossed around and used as a microphone and it got me thinking. I've had a heck of a time teaching students to use a "classroom voice" when speaking in class. I also wonder if having my voice amplified would help student focus and attention.


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Old 07-21-2017, 08:39 PM
 
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Yep, I use one all the time. I really love it because I don't have to strain my voice to make sure everyone can hear me. The system my school bought for everyone comes with two microphones - I let my students use the other one when they are presenting to the class, which they love.
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My experience
Old 07-22-2017, 02:39 AM
 
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I used to teach next door to a teacher that used one and some days it was hard to talk over the history lesson that we could hear through the walls. It was very distracting. So I guess what I'm saying is please be mindful of the volume you are using and if your neighboring classrooms can be bothered by it.
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Old 07-22-2017, 03:27 AM
 
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Every classroom has one in my school. It makes a huge difference with students paying attention and also saves my voice. Our walls must be thicker than pp because hearing another classroom has never been an issue unless the door is open.
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Old 07-22-2017, 05:45 AM
 
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I believe there has been some scientific research done on the effectiveness of the voice amplification in the classroom It has a very positive outcome.Give it a try .


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Old 07-22-2017, 06:28 AM
 
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I understand the positives the other pp's mentioned, but I hated it. I had to use it one year for a student with hearing problems. The microphone was on a lanyard type necklace thing, and it was always getting in my way, or not adjusted to the right height, and I had to remember to turn it off when leaving the classroom. If I left it on, sometimes you could still hear me talking in the courtyard, and sometimes there was terrible feedback in the speaker in my classroom. I was also paranoid I'd leave it on while I was using the bathroom! I also had to turn it off and on even in the classroom, like when I'd lean over to assist an individual or discipline someone and don't want the whole class to hear. It was a pain.

I had two speakers in my classroom and constantly had to adjust them to make them the right volume and not have that fuzzy sound feedback issue.

Maybe technology has improved (this was about 5 years ago) but I would never want one again!
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Old 07-22-2017, 08:29 AM
 
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KatieViolet's comment makes me feel so sad. My youngest boy is about to go to Pre-K. He is deaf in one ear, and the school is providing a microphone for the teacher. This comment is my biggest fear...the teacher griping behind his back about the accommodations needed for him.
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Every classroom has them in our school.
Old 07-22-2017, 11:20 AM
 
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I love them. I had a boy with hearing loss last year, and it was very helpful. I also feel like it saves my voice. I can talk in a very quiet voice, and everyone in the room can hear me at the same volume, no matter where they are. You don't have to turn it up very high. I've never heard anyone else's through the walls. If I need to get a kid's attention who is not listening, I just hold the mic closer to my mouth. You never have to raise your voice at all.
I will say, though, that one time I had a kid who was being very disruptive. I took him out in the hall to talk to him, and was being pretty, um, for lack of a better word, dramatic. I forgot to turn off my mic. The para who was working in my room, came running out the door, and grabbed my mic to turn it off. The kids' eyes were all as big as saucers. I won't do that again.
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I love mine!
Old 07-22-2017, 11:28 AM
 
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I actually asked my principal for one because I started to experience hearing loss and I couldn't clearly hear when my students were sharing their writing with the class. The kids LOVE using it.

I love using it when I present lessons because I know the kids at the back can hear just as well as the kids in the front. My speaker is at the back of the classroom.
It also definitely saves your voice.



Quality devices are expensive -- I think our classroom units raun
about $1,500. Our principal has bought the units in increments -- one grade level each year. This year will complete the school. Everyone at my school loves them!
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Voice Amplifiers
Old 07-22-2017, 01:48 PM
 
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I use THIS ONE. It's portable.

Between student voices, computer noise and air flow noise, without it, my throat is so strained it would hurt at the end of every day.

I can speak in a normal tone and it picks up. It's easy to turn off, so if I'm speaking to an individual student, those comments are private.

If I have a student with hearing issues, I make sure they are seated closest to the speaker.


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Old 07-22-2017, 03:03 PM
 
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All of our teacher have access to one. They don't all use them. I work with small groups of students, so I don't have a need, but if I taught a whole class, I would use one. My brother, who was also a teacher, had to have surgery due to straining his voice talking all day. Use the amplifier.
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To cake pop
Old 07-22-2017, 05:31 PM
 
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I'm sorry if I offended you. I didn't mean to come across that way. I certainly never said anything to the child that the technology was frustrating, I tried to make it easy for him in the classroom, and I always used it. I completely understand that he needed it and am all about following thru for accommodations. My particular devices were difficult to use correctly, and we got little training. I think it's okay for me not to volantarily use one for my own desire, which seems to be what the OP was saying. Of course I would if/when I have a student who actually needs it.

good luck to your son starting school!
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Old 07-22-2017, 05:32 PM
 
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We all have them. It does help kids hear equally all over the room, no matter where I am standing.

When we first got the systems, we joked that the two extremely loud teachers on our wing would drown out everyone. However, once she could use her regular voice, we never heard her.
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I've used two different ones
Old 07-22-2017, 05:40 PM
 
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First, I had a student with hearing aids. I had a device that only amplified through her hearing aids. For the rest of my kids, it was just a big necklace around my neck. She could also use it instead of headphones at the computer. Yes, it was an additional thing I had to worry about, but I was glad to wear it if it helped her out.

Then last year I got laryngitis again. The year before I'd had it for almost six weeks and it was awful. So I bought a voice amplifier with bluetooth speaker. All I carried around was the headset. I loved it. I loved being able to talk in a normal voice and be heard throughout the room. I don't always use it.
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Old 07-22-2017, 05:55 PM
 
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Can you link to your system? Thanks!
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This is the one I bought
Old 07-22-2017, 11:17 PM
 
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https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

You can carry the speaker around if you wish, but I just left it charging on my desk and it was effective enough.
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Yes!
Old 07-23-2017, 02:19 AM
 
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I use one- everyday- all day.
It is called the Phonic Ear system. It is light, a concave sideways shape, clicks around my neck and sits not far below my collarbone. Quick to remove and share around for kids to use. Easy to mute by pressing a large soft button on the front for when the phone rings or speaking with a parent.
The sound emits from stereo speakers up high affixed to the top corners and middle of the room's walls. There is a wall mounted base station for charging it, but takes a regular rechargeable battery.
The kids have the right to hear you CLEARLY all day consistently, so I totally recommend it. ASK YOUR ADMIN TO HAVE IT INSTALLED ASAP and forget the ball thing!! An awesome tool for helping hearing impaired students (and those who you don't know about yet!!), and Autistic kids or those with speech or processing probs as well as helping save your own voice.
Hope that helps!
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Old 07-23-2017, 11:18 AM
 
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Great recommendations! Thanks! I was thinking of putting together a donors choose project for this and now I have plenty of reasons to do it! I like the idea of a microphone I could pass to students. Lots of different product options out there too! I knew I could get some good feedback here!
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