Saturday, March 8, 2014


FM: aka Frequency Modulator; a system for sending radio signals in which the number of radio waves per second is changed in order to send information in the form of sound.

Transmitting Unit and Lapel Mic
To help me hear my students in my classroom and speakers at faculty meetings and workshops, my school district loaned me an FM system to use with my cochlear implant. I simply plug a receiver into my processor, turn on the transmitting unit, and clip the lapel microphone on the speaker. Voila! The voice is instantaneously transmitted to my processor.

It's an amazing piece of technology. Rather than broadcasting the sound to the entire room, I am the sole beneficiary of the system. Even more amazing is when I use my handy-dandy remote assistant device to adjust the mix of FM mic to processor mic. I can hear 100% of the lapel mic, or adjust it to hear a mix of lapel mic and processor mic. When listening to children read, turning the FM to 100% eliminates the noise clutter of my classroom so that I can focus on the student I am working with. In meetings, I can adjust it so I can hear the voices of both the speaker and the people at my table.
This is the receiver that plugs into my processor.

But as amazing as it is, it's not without distractions. At a workshop yesterday, I could hear the speaker as she monitored the small group interactions at other tables as if she were speaking directly to me. I could hear her comments and questions, and once turned to my table mate to ask her a question about something the speaker had said at another table. Her ensuing look of puzzlement told me she had not heard the comment. I giggled to myself.

I could even hear the speaker's side-bar whispers meant only for another's ears.

It's a good thing I can keep a secret!

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