Google Chrome Accessibility Extensions & Applications: Reading, Focus & Navigation

Resource List
Aug. 20, 2020Updated Sep. 26, 2022

Students with disabilities and the families who support them often find it much more challenging to meet their educational goals at home without the assistance they usually receive at school. Fortunately, Google Chrome offers a variety of extensions and applications that can be downloaded to your home computer.

We’ve divided these resources into two parts: part 1 focuses on support for children who need help with visual/auditory comprehension and readability, and part 2 zeroes in on support for children who need help with reading comprehension, sustaining focus/attention, and navigation. We’ve noted pricing and other information such as reading level when available. Please let us know if anything on this list (or elsewhere) has been particularly helpful for your child.

Reading Comprehension Extensions

Google Dictionary

Just by double-clicking any word or phrase, you can view its definition in a small pop-up bubble. Words are automatically translated to your language of choice, and you can store words to practice them later. Note that the pop-up bubble will not work in tabs that were open prior to installation. After installing this extension, either reload your open tabs or restart Chrome.

○ Cost: FREE

Ginger

This spelling and grammar checker helps improve written English communication and includes a contextual grammar and spell checker, synonyms, translations, and a dictionary. It also provides suggestions for rephrasing text so you can convey messages with more clarity. There’s even an option to save your text for later use, and it syncs across all platforms.

○ Cost: FREE

Lucidchart

For visual learners, this Google Chrome app allows users to organize their thoughts using graphics. The diagramming tool includes hundreds of templates and examples, such as flowcharts, Venn diagrams, graphic organizers, mind maps, organizational charts, and more.

○ Cost: FREE

Newsela

This Google Chrome app adapts news articles to your child’s reading level while empowering them to apply reading comprehension strategies like highlighting and annotating digital text. Articles are published at five different reading levels with built-in assessments to engage students.

○ Cost: FREE with registration

○ Reading level: Grades K–12

SMMRY

Summarize any online article using the SMMRY website. It reduces the text to only the most important sentences. This tool works with any text, including PDFs. Simply paste the link to the article or upload a file and SMMRY will give you an easy-to-understand synopsis.

○ Cost: FREE

Focus Extensions

Auto Highlight

Auto Highlight is a Google Chrome Extension that automatically highlights the important information in articles, similar to an article summarizer.

○ Cost: FREE

Simple Blocker

Simple Blocker boosts productivity and readability by blocking websites (such as Facebook or Reddit) and subdomains (like news.google.com) so users can focus on the task at hand without being distracted. This extension also has a sleep timer, which allows you to block websites for a set amount of time.

○ Cost: FREE

Move It

This great extension informs users when it’s time to take a break and get active. After setting a time interval, a random “brain break” and physical exercise will pop up at the designated time. This can also help both students and adults monitor their time spent on the computer.

○ Cost: FREE

Google Keep Chrome Extension

Google Keep helps you store quotes, websites, and images that you find and want to save for later. They can be synced across all the platforms you use, including iOS and Android. You can also add notes and labels to keep things organized.

○ Cost: FREE

MagicScroll Web Reader

This unique scrolling system transforms web pages into a book-like interface, making it easier to read without distractions. Once you install the extension, click on the small book icon at the top of your toolbar; clicking this after navigating to any web page will transform the page and eliminate the need for scrolling.

○ Cost: FREE

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Contents


Overview

Reading Comprehension Extensions

Focus Extensions

Navigation Extensions

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