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Top iPad Apps for Children with Autism

Child with iPad

Child with iPad

Top iPad Apps for Children with Autism

This article was originally intended as an assignment on Helium but I got wind of it a bit late and had to rush it and ended up failing to include links as was required. It was rejected. :( (Note to self: always read the terms and conditions carefully)

In a way, I’m glad it was. I now have more time to  extend my research and provide a more comprehensive (and edited) write-up with the help of images and videos.

Please be aware that I am not an expert on children with autism, neither have I personally used the apps mentioned here. I don’t even have an iPad2 yet. I prefer a laptop which allows me to work on.

I do have a soft spot for children, especially those with special needs, so when I saw the title, I knew this was one I would want to write about. I hope readers will find the information useful.

Kids with iPad

Kids with iPad

Since the inception of the iPad and now the iPad2, a large selection of apps have been introduced.

Parents and educators are now excited about the iPad as a teaching aid for autistic children thanks to apps specially developed for children with disabilities which make communication difficult.

These apps help children with autism improve basic skills such as social, fine motor, language and communication skills. Children learn to communicate and express themselves with their iPad without the usual frustration they feel.

I’ve come across may sites promoting apps for children with autism, and these are three that stood out. The info provided is a summary of the info found on the respective product pages.

1. Proloquo2Go

This app can be used on iPhones, iPod touch and the iPad. Highly recommended for people with autism, cerebral palsy and other brain disabilities, it provides an alternative communication solution for those who have difficulty speaking.

Utilizing natural sounding text-to-speech voices, colorful stick-figure illustrations, a high vocabulary of more than 7,000 words and advance word prediction, the Proloquo2Go is extremely easy to use.

I think this video from ABC News will explain Proloquo2Go better:

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2. Grace

The Grace app is an award-winning* app which allows children with special needs to communicate by selecting pictures and linking them to form sentences, before showing them to others to hear them read each word.

Grace app screenshot

Grace app screenshot

Users are encouraged to take control of what they want to say. With practice, users can learn to vocalize words with the pictures as a back-up. Although Grace has its own library of images, digital images from personal photo albums and other sources may be added, and stored images deleted, to customize it.

* Winner of the 2010 Irish Web Awards and United Nations World Summit Award Mobile.

3. iComm

The iComm is an affordable, easy-to-use communication system for children with autism and other disabilities which make communication difficult. Using pictures and words, written and spoken, it allows children to learn by associating pictures with their verbal equivalent.

iComm app

iComm app

Fully customizable, it allows parents to add pictures that their children are familiar with, and also record words in their voice. When children select a picture and hear their parent’s voice saying the word, they love it.

While content is provided for certain categories, parents can create new categories by adding pictures and voice recordings.

This new content can be deleted when no longer needed. Users have control over the experience they want for their children.

These are only three of many iPad apps that may provide solutions to problems faced by parents and children with special needs. Many of these apps can also be used on your iPhone.

Here is a parent’s review of Expressive, another iPad app for children with autism.

Please share your experiences of other apps that will benefit our children.

(The images used are taken from the Internet. Please let me know if they are in violation of any copyright and I will remove them immediately)

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4 responses »

  1. How can I get one for my autistic son?

    Reply
    • Hi Sandy,

      Click on the name of the app you want for your son. It will take you to a website where you should be able to find out more and purchase one for him.

      Let me know once you’ve got one and share your son’s experience.

      Ken

      Reply
  2. love your review Kevin. The iComm App is especially good for people with motor difficulties as it can be controlled with a clenched hand – I set it up for a friend’s daughter who has severe cerebral palsy and she could use it straight away – ordered a chocolate cake!
    Take care and thank you for including Grace App

    Reply

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