Palmerston North Boys’ High School teacher Rick Jochem and his Year 13 Horticulture students won an AVerVision F50 visualiser in a competition last year. It hasn’t taken them long to explore the potential of key features, as he explains.
OCR – Text Recognition
The OCR function of the F50 is great for taking small snippets of text from magazine or newspaper columns. I’ve found it to be a little limiting in its ability to snap a whole A4 page, as the font is usually too small for it to recognise the letters correctly. This image gives an example of how much text the software can accurately transcribe from a glossy magazine article. The visualiser software does give an indication of how much to zoom into the text for accurate transcription.
TTS – Text To Speech
I’ve been impressed with the text to speech abilities of the software. The text needs to be copied into the software (so it could be copied and pasted from any document and read back to you). The inflection of the voice is not perfect but it manages numbers and anagrams very well. In the context of my classroom teaching (sciences), it probably has limited use. However, for something like language classes I could see the option of downloading an ebook and having it read to students.
We’ve also thoroughly enjoyed the ‘oldies but goodies’, the features of the F50 that have been making it a necessity for classrooms everywhere.