Creating and saving a new symbol in Boardmaker

When we are using the Boardmaker Software Family we can get creative with making our own new symbols from the existing PCS (Picture Communication Symbols). One symbol I like to use frequently when I am making a visual schedule is the black and white checks for “finished”. It’s one symbol that I have had to create myself.

You can do this in lots of different ways. You might find a racing flag image in a web browser and use the feature of drag and drop to put it into the cell. Or as I did, use the symbol for “checker board” and change it to a black and white symbol in the Symbol Finder Settings.

But what do you do once you have the perfect image and want to save it so you can use it over and over again???

I’ve created this step by step guide to saving a new image into the Symbol Browser in Boardmaker.

1. Once you have created your new image you need to select it using the Pointer Tool. Click on the symbol and you will see dotted red lines surrounding it.

2. Then you need to copy the new symbol by selecting “copy” from the Edit menu.

3. Then open up the Symbol Finder by selecting the face on the far left side of the toolbar.

4. Use the keyboard shortcuts “Ctrl + V” to paste the image (as you can’t access the Edit menu when in the Symbol Browser) and you will see your new symbol in a My Symbols\Mine pop up.

5. It is important to type the names you want to assign to the symbol in the text box and click on “Add a Name”

6. Then select “Assign Categories” and you can click in the check boxes next to the categories you want the symbol to be linked to. Click “OK” when you have assigned all categories.

7. Click “OK” again to complete adding the symbol and you will now see your new symbol in the symbol finder.

So now you have another great way to add symbols to your symbol library and create pictures that are meaningful and useful to the settings you use them in.

Another great way to add new symbols to your symbol library is by checking the Boardmaker Share website where new symbols are added frequently. Symbols for the 2012 Olympics and other themed topics are there for you to use right now. You can never have too many symbols!

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About Charlene Cullen

Charlene has worked as a speech pathologist, supporting people with complex communication needs and learning disabilities for the past 15 years. She has worked in a variety of roles within the Disability Services of Western Australia, including Senior Speech Pathologist, Rural and Remote Resource Therapist and Regional Team Manager.

Charlene is a trained Key Word Sign (formerly Makaton) presenter, certified Hanen It Takes Two to Talk presenter and a member of the Apple Consultants Network. Charlene is also an official Proloquo2Go / Proloquo4Text trainer, and TBoxApps Trainer for Therapy Box.

Charlene has developed strong skills in and a passion for, the area of AAC and assistive technologies. She enjoys presenting workshops and providing consultancy services to support and educate parents, teachers and therapists in the use and application of inclusive technologies.

Charlene is a full time member of the Professional and Consultancy Services Team at Spectronics.

AGOSCI State Representative for Victoria (2012-present); Key Word Sign Victoria committee member (2012-present).

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