When Sonya was approved for Early Intervention, we immediately put in a request for an FM system. She was only eight months or so at the time, but we knew having a device would be useful. We were approved to receive a Phonak Roger. Here I am wearing it while visiting Sonya at school last year.
The device worked great. However, it was bulky and uncomfortable to wear. The cord that went around my neck would consistently come off the back attachment – and it was very difficult and annoying to repair. The microphone cord (which was separate from the cord that went around the neck) hung loosly and would catch on things – especially when bending over to pick something up (which as a mom you do about 74 percent of your day).
Now that Sonya is officially in the Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE) program in New York, we were able to request an upgrade. Last week, I went up to Harlem to pick up the Phonak Roger Touchscreen Mic.
It has only been a few days, but if it possible for a human to fall in love with a “wireless teacher microphone” I think I have.
So far, here are the advantages over the old model:
- The microphone is actually built into the device, so no additional wire hanging from it.
- The lanyard is more comfortable and way better in every way than the cords of its predecessor.
- The “mute” button is easy to find and understand whether or not you’re on mute. It’s that big button on the bottom of the device. Easy for a teacher to see and it blinks red when muted. A common problem we were having with the old roger was that a teacher would not realize whether or not he/she was on mute. A critical improvement!
- It’s a touchscreen, but its way more durable than an iPhone. This thing won’t likely shatter if you drop it (though you can buy a screen protector separately, if you want to keep the screen scratch free).
- Like its predecessor, the new Roger Touchscreen can be used to connect Sonya’s processors to an iPad or iPhone.
- The battery life seems good (at least 24 hours if not more) but I have yet to test this.
- In addition to amplifying a teacher’s voice over the background noise of a classroom, the Roger Touchscreen offers a Small Group mode, so that Sonya will be able to hear her classmates easier in small-group situations. Her teachers can simply put the Roger in this mode and place it on the table as opposed to wearing it.
P.s. I followed this tutorial to figure out how to best use it – and I found it very helpful!