APPS for Autism and Asperger's

Many people have been asking about APPS for iPhones, iPads and iPods.  Here are some APPS suggested by Lois Jean Brady in her book: "Apps for Autism", and some apps reviewed by Bronwyn Sutton, a Queensland Speech Therapist who runs workshops on "Apps for Autism" and reviews apps on her website, see "The Learning App Guide" below.  I have also included APPS suggested to me by other service providers and parents of kids on the spectrum.  If you have found a great APP, let me know and I will add it to the list.   

TIPS FOR PARENTS

How to Stop a Child from Exiting an App   

Most children love using an iPad.  They know their way around the iPad and know where their favourite apps are.  When you want your child to use an educational app it is easy for your child to exit the app and go into another app.  Also some apps have features that you can't hide, such as the settings and share functions.The following steps will allow you to block the Home button and disable certain parts of the app.  Your child can only exit the app if they know the password you have set for it.Instructions on how to stop a child from exiting an app are available here.

 

Shock-Proof Cases for iPads

Griffin Survivor - Griffin, BigW, Amazon 

Shock Drop for iPad Air Prompt Education

 

APP REVIEWS

 https://www.learningappguide.com/AppCriteria.php There is a free trial where you can see some reviews, but you need to subscribe to see the full list of reviews.  

  

COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS - TEXT and/or PICTURES to SPEECH

Discuss with a speech therapist whether your child would be a good candidate for LAMP before considering this option.  This program runs on a special device, not an iPad or phone, so it costs approx $7000 including the device, so it may not be the best option for you.  However high-functioning but non-verbal individuals with autism who are able to use visuals but are frustrated using some of the simpler programs below (because they don't cater for more complex utterances than "I want") may benefit from this system.  Each word is made through a combination of button presses, and the buttons are always in certain positions so that once the individual learns the system they are able to use complex grammar and vocabulary.  There is the possibility of asking questions, making comments, and having a two way conversation.  When learning the system you start with key symbols, and then add more symbols as the individual becomes more familiar with the program.  LAMP has been trialled in some ASPECT schools and has been used in conjunction with a classroom SmartBoard.  

  • LAMP Words for Life for iPad - by Prentke Romich Company USD$299.00

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/lamp-words-for-life/id551215116?mt=8 The new iPad version of LAMP described above.  There may also be ongoing costs as the cost includes 90 days free iShare Access (I'm not sure what ongoing access would cost).  

  • Proloquo2Go by AssistiveWare AUD$229.99

 http://www.assistiveware.com/product/proloquo2go Similar to Boardmaker but with text-to-speech so people can create a phrase and Proloquo2Go will say it and display it in symbols.  Includes a library of over 7000 items.

  • iReadWrite from TextHelp

Lots of features to help with reading and comprehending text, and in writing for assignments etc.  Great for people with dyslexia and other learning difficulties.  Youtube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Iyu64sgWuI&feature=share&list=UUZAh-YwqmDNE3ii6mHLR2Cg%20features%20of%20iReadWrite%20work.

 A choice of two male and two female voices will "read" the text from emails, documents, web pages, and pdf files that you copy and paste into Speak It.  Voices are natural sounding and clear.  You can produce an audio file which can be emailed.  To access the settings and files the iPad has to be in Landscape mode.  This app is also recommended for individuals with reading disorders.  

Typing to speech program with excellent word prediction to cut down on keystrokes required, and adaptive learning of new vocabulary.  Three voices to choose from, a favourites list and a quick list.  

  • My Choice Board by Good Karma Applications Inc USD$9.99

 http://www.goodkarmaapplications.com/my-choice-board.html Has "I want" and pictures of choices so people can express their needs and wants. Pictures and audio can be customised.  There is an "unavailable" sign for popular choices that are not currently available.

  •   Look2Learn - AAC by MDR

http://www.look2learn.com/?q=look-2-learn-aac Has "I want" and photos with audio so people can express their needs and wants.  Clients are able to record their own voices to use with their own photos.  

  •  Voice4U by Spectrum Visions 

http://voice4uaac.com/apps/  Designed to help people express their feelings, thoughts, actions and things they need.  Audio, image and graphics can be customised. Lois Jean Brady says the current audio is breathy and the rate is a bit quick so users will want to customise the audio. Also available on GooglePlay for Android phones.  

You can record a series of messages and then put them in sequence so the individual with autism can tap on each step of a task, story or song to hear the recorded voice output.

A green button with "Yes" and a red button with "No".  A voice speaks the option you select.  

Take a photo (or use a photo of their TV favourite character or one of the sample photos) and the photo "speaks" the sound while the person in the photo's mouth moves up and down in rhythm.  

Upload a full-face photo, record your verbal message, and the photo becomes an avatar which speaks your message.  You can add glasses and curly hair to the photo with a double tap of the screen.  The photo/avatars will follow your finger around the screen with their eyes and head.  

Not text to speech, but it makes typing and emailing messages easier for those who struggle with small keypad buttons.  There are six large buttons which cover the alphabet and most commonly used punctuation.  Multiple taps on a button will give the required letter.  Word prediction included.  Can then email or post to social networks.  

 

COMMUNICATION - SPEECH THERAPY APPS

  • SmallTalk Phonemes and SmallTalk Consonant Blends by Lingraphica www.aphasia.com Free

Series of speech therapy exercises using video of a person's mouth (no eye contact required) to show the lip and tongue movements for single sounds and consonant blends.  

This app is useful for individuals with dyspraxia who have difficulty with the lip and tongue movements involved in speaking.  It combines text and speech with video of a mouth making the sounds to help people to learn how to say words and phrases.  Handy for people with autism as the video is just the mouth rather than the whole face.

A series of flashcards with photos and text for practicing sounds, with immediate auditory feedback.  Target sounds can be the first, middle or last sound in a word, or in short sentences.  Scores of correct, incorrect and approximations are revealed in real time and a summary is provided and stored upon completion.  Includes side and front views of the mouth to help with learning the lip and tongue positions for making sounds.  

This program has been designed by speech pathologists to teach the sounds that letters make, how to join sounds to read words, how to break words up into sounds, and how to read the 200 most common sight words and improve reading and spelling skills 

 

COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS - SIGN LANGUAGE

Type in a word, phrase or sentence and the avatar will sign it for you.  Your entries are saved alpabetically for easy reference.  The user can adjust signing speeds and rotate the avatar to get a better view of hand shapes and movements. 

Designed to help people learn the American Sign Language alphabet.  A letter is spoken aloud and the user can choose from three different signs.  Once they choose the right sign, the reward sound is played and they can move onto the next letter.  

Teaches you 300 ASL signs, with video of a person making the sign and verbal instructions on how to make the sign.

 

SOCIAL SKILLS

 

VIDEO MODELING

 

SOCIAL STORIES

         Ready to go Social Stories on Toileting, Conversations, Trying New Foods, Sleep and Going to the Hairdresser.  Able to be customised with your child's name and photo.

 

FACIAL EXPRESSIONS

 

POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR SUPPORT / PERSON CENTRED PLANNING

 

 

 

ANXIETY MANAGEMENT/RELAXATION

 

 

 

CUSTOMISED LEARNING AND REWARD PROGRAMS

  • iLearnNEarn (Individualise Learning with Reward Earning) by WebTeam Corporation

Based on Applied Behaviour Analysis for Infants and Toddlers with Autism 

http://www.ilearnnearn.com/take-tour.html

 

  • Class DoJo by Class Twist Inc - Reward program for Teachers

Teachers can give points to individual students and generate reports for parents 

http://www.classdojo.com/about

 

 

  • I Earned That by Kidoc - Reward program for parents or teachers

Take a photo of reward and it becomes a 3D puzzle. As the child works towards the reward you can turn over a piece of the puzzle to reveal more of the photo of the reward

http://www.iearnedthat.com/

 

 

 PODCASTS ON AUTISM AND TEACHING STRATEGIES

  • Inclusive Design free course on iTunesU by Apple Distinguished Educator Community